The junior college ranks are becoming a big part of what Tennessee Head Coach Derek Dooley is trying to attack to get the top players that the two-year colleges are offering. Khambrel Garland is just another potential piece that Derek Dooley and staff are trying to add to the pipeline of top junior college players.
"I have really been talking to Tennessee a lot lately. I talked to Coach Dooley and Coach Staley recently. They were cool." Garland, who is origianally from St. Thomas Aquinas HS (FL), signed with Northern Illinois coming out of high school, but was not able to qualify. However, the process is different now he states.
"Junior college has really taught me how to mature. Coming out of high school I didn't feel like I was mature enough for D1. It has helped me get faster. I also think I have gotten bigger as well. The drills that I'm doing here are going to be able to help whenever I got to D1. It will just become natural to me, but with a faster pace."
While he already has in mind of how he will be able to perform at the next level, where does Garland think he'll be able to do all of the things needed at the next level?
"I'm really liking Tennessee right now. I wouldn't call them my favorite, but they are one of them. I have been talking to Nebraska some lately as well. I told them I would try to come up there..."
The Arizona Western Community College star has not only caught the attention of Tennessee, he has gained offers from Arkansas, Oregon State, Indiana, Baylor, South Alabama, and Purdue to go along with the Vols. Garland will soon make the trip up to Knoxville this coming up month for the first time ever. Despite it being his first time on Rocky Top, the junior college defender has made suggestions that his comfort level will still be high. " With Coach Staley and CP, (who Garland knows after spending a year with the two at Hutchinson Community College in Kansas) at UT already I am going to feel more comfortable when I go there." Tennessee will be losing soon to be three year starter Prentiss Wagner, so having the ability to replace them a junior college player that has experience will be beneficial in the future for the Vols. Garland is high on the Vols, and would be a solid pickup for the new defensive staff.