Junior college defensive end/linebacker reflects on Tennessee visit
Jordan Bonner is in no hurry to end his recruiting journey. The 3-star defensive end/linebacker said he never even thought about committing to Tennessee during his official visit this weekend. Yet that’s no cause for concern.
“No, we didn’t even talk about it,” the prospect from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M (Miami, Ok.) told SEC Country. “…I love Tennessee, but I’ve still got three more visits to take that I haven’t even set up yet.”
The 6-foot-6, 230-pound Bonner said he planned to take an official visit to Kentucky on Dec. 12 and will take official visits to Louisville and Nebraska before making his decision, although he’s unsure of when he’ll take those trips. He plans to announce his decision in December or January.
Tennessee is believed to be in good position to land Bonner. This recent visit only reinforced that.
“I had a great time,” he said. “I enjoyed myself. Great facilities. Great stadium. Everything was pretty good.”
Bonner said Tennessee has him tabbed to play defensive end. With his light frame, he could also play a hybrid defensive end/linebacker role as senior Curt Maggitt did before his hip injury in September. Bonner is willing to play either position.
Bonner took notice of Tennessee defensive end Derek Barnett on Saturday. The sophomore had two sacks, one of which resulted in a safety.
“He might be entering the draft sometime soon,” Bonner said.
Tennessee is sure to use its recent success at developing defensive ends to convince Bonner to become a Vol. Maggitt played linebacker before his success at defensive end. Barnett is one of the top underclassmen defensive ends in the nation. Junior Corey Vereen has also blossomed this season. Tennessee’s defensive line is coached by Steve Stripling, who is one of Bonner’s primary recruiters, along with John Jancek.
“I think coach Strip is a great guy,” Bonner said. “I”m sure he has a lot to do with (Barnett’s) development. I was watching him. That dude is a beast. Coach is helping him out.”