National Signing Day is less than a week away and it is crunch time for coaches and recruits across the country. Coach Butch Jones and staff seem to be going for a "boom or bust" approach as we count down the days till next Wednesday. Luckily for the Big Orange Nation that looks like a boom!
With the commitment from WR MarQuez North last night, Tennessee has jumped 13 spots in the RIVALS class rankings. The addition of North moved the Vols into the top 25 in the 247Composite team rankings at number 25.
Contact period ends this weekend.
5* RB Derrick Green committed to Michigan on Saturday.
5* DB Vonn Bell ‘s official visit to Knoxville last weekend went well. It is down to Alabama and Tennessee but nothing will be announced till next Wednesday at 10:00 AM. Andrew Bone who works within the athletic department at Alabama had this to say, "I don't see Bell as a part of this class anymore. I'll give the edge to UT.”
5* DE Carl Lawson makes an official visit to Auburn this weekend where he has been committed since last March. He is expected to have visits from Clemson and Tennessee this week but will not announce until NSD.
4 * WR Marquez North cancelled his visit to UNC, ended his recruitment and committed to Tennessee as of Wednesday PM. North confirms his decision via tweet.
Another 4* WR, Shelton Gibson is committed to West Virginia but visited Tennessee earlier this month. Expect the coaching staff to make a final visit to him before NSD.
4* QB Joshua Dobbs visited last weekend but currently remains committed to Arizona State.
3* RB Aregaros Turner may make a visit to Knoxville this weekend. He decommitted from Cincinnati and is considering UT and Kentucky.
Another 3* RB and Ole Miss commit, Peyton Barber made a visit early in January but is not expected to waver from the Rebels.
Tuesday night DE Davin Bellamy decommitted from Florida State, which leaves Georgia, Tennessee and possibly Oregon? Bellamy is planning to visit the Ducks this weekend. Bellamy received a visit Monday night from Mark Richt and Todd Grantham while the Vols made their final in-home visit on Tuesday. Georgia has a slight lead with the Vols not far behind.
4* LB Trey Johnson visited last weekend but still remains committed to Ohio State as of Wednesday PM.
3* OT Dan Skipper decommitted from Tennessee on Monday. He is headed to Arkansas. He was initially recruited to the Vols by Chaney and Pittman who are both now currently on staff in Fayetteville.
OL Chongo Kondolo was rumored to have made his decision to commit to Tennessee on Tuesday but this is unconfirmed. However, Nebraska and Utah State still appear to be contenders at this point and Kondolo may very well wait till NSD to announce.
3* DL Jaylen Miller said Tuesday that he’s not planning to announce his decision until signing day, but the Vols still appear to be in good shape with him. Miller returned to Knoxville on Saturday with his family for a quick unofficial visit coming off his official visit to UT the previous weekend. Tennessee is expected to make its final visit with Miller in the next couple of days but Miller said there’s still a chance he could visit North Carolina State or Maryland this weekend.
4* RB and Vandy decommit, Johnathan Ford hosted Auburn coach Gus Malzahn on Tuesday night for his final in-home visit with the Tigers. Ford, who remains the Vols’ top remaining target at running back, has stayed in contact with Tennessee’s coaches over the past couple of weeks, and UT is expected to make its final in-home visit with him in the next couple of days. Auburn appears to have all of the momentum with him right now though.
4* WR Tyler Boyd sticking with his commitment to Pitt over Tennessee.
4* LB and FSU commit, E.J. Levenberry is currently in Knoxville to visit Tennessee after canceling last weekend. If he backs out the Vols are still pushing to get at least one other linebacker on campus this weekend.
4* LB Skai Moore may make Knoxville his final visit this weekend although this has not been confirmed. Arkansas and South Carolina however are currently making a hard push for Moore.
LB Zach Cunningham no longer appears to be an option for Tennessee. He said Tuesday night that he’s not planning to visit Knoxville after canceling his scheduled trip on Sunday. He will decide between Auburn, Oregon and Vanderbilt on Thursday, but he’s not planning to announce his choice until signing day.
JUCO WR Corey Smith, a former UT commitment, received a visit from Coach Jones on Tuesday, but Smith announced that afternoon that he has committed to Ohio State.
Coach Elder made his final in-home visit with TE commitment A.J. Branisel on Tuesday night. Coach Mahoney met with OL commitment Dylan Wiesman Tuesday. Both Branisel and Wiesman remain firmly committed to Tennessee and are expected to sign with the Vols next week.
DE Joe Sanders off the committed list. JUCO bound.
3* DE and Syracuse commit Malik Brown may visit Knoxville before the week is out.
4* DE Jason Carr remains firmly committed to Tennessee after spending an “unofficial” weekend in Knoxville last week. Great quote from Carr, “I had a player tell me this weekend that he has had more conversations with Coach Jones since he came back for the semester than he had with Coach Dooley his entire career. All of us really like the whole coaching staff."
The countdown is on! I have a good feeling about this....
The University of Tennessee football team's spring football practice schedule begins March 9, including six practices before the University's spring break (March 25-29). The Vols open on Saturday, March 9, with the first of 14 practices leading into the Orange and White Game, which is set for April 20 at 2:00 p.m. at Neyland Stadium. The Spring Coaches Clinic will be held April 11-13.
A pre-spring practice press conference with head coach Butch Jones will be held on Friday, March 8, at the Stokely Family Media Center at Neyland Stadium.
Additionally, the annual Pro Timing Day is scheduled for Wednesday, March 20.
Tentative Spring Practice Dates
March 8 - Pre-Spring Practice Press Conference, Stokely Family Media Center, Neyland Stadium
March practice days: 9, 12, 14, 16, 19, 21
April practice days: 2, 4, 6, 9, 11, 13, 16, 18
April 20 - Orange and White Game, 2 p.m., Neyland Stadium