Tennessee’s football team could use some seriously-talented gifts under the tree this holiday season.
With only about five weeks left until National Signing Day, the Vols have just 15 public commitments. Tennessee’s coaches are hoping recruits are in the gift-giving mood. Keep the toys, electronics and jewelry. The Vols want highly-rated commitments.
Here are five holiday recruiting gifts that would make Tennessee’s holidays extra happy:
Derrick Brown, 5-star DT, 6-foot-4, 318 pounds (Lanier High School, Buford, Ga.)
Brown is hard to read. He is still considering several schools and has taken a business-like approach to his recruitment. He doesn’t say too much, but UGA and Alabama seem to have the lead. Securing Brown would be like receiving a Red Ryder BB Gun. It would be shocking and cause for celebration. Brown is scheduled to take his official visit to Tennessee on Jan. 29.
Donnie Corley, 4-star WR, 6-2½, 182 pounds (Martin Luther King, Wyandotte, Mich.)
Corley’s been extremely tough to predict. He has postponed his college decision at least twice. Now, he may not even enroll in January as previously planned. Tennessee, Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State are his finalists. However, Miami has made up ground lately.
Mecole Hardman Jr., 5-star ATH, 5-10, 175 pounds (Elbert County High School, Elberton, Ga.)
Like Brown, Hardman Jr., will be tough to land. Still, he has shown interest in the Vols throughout the recruiting process. As Alabama and UGA continue to battle for Hardman, perhaps Tennessee becomes the safe choice. Hardman Jr., is the type of playmaker the Vols have been missing at wideout.
Jonathan Kongbo, 4-star DE, 6-5½, 264 pounds (Arizona Western Junior College, Yuma, Ariz.)
Kongbo is committed to Tennessee but has shown interest in several other schools, including Oregon, Washington and Alabama. Given that he’s already committed, it would be hard to describe him as a “surprise” holiday gift. However, the Vols can’t feel too confident about where they currently stand since he’s continuing to look around.
Nigel Warrior, 4-star S, 5-11, 188 pounds (Peachtree Ridge, Suwanee, Ga.)
The Vols haven’t given up on Warrior. Considering his father, Dale Carter, played at Tennessee, they shouldn’t. However, Warrior has given strong indications he’ll end up elsewhere, perhaps Alabama or UGA. He is set to take an official visit to Tennessee on Jan. 29.