KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee’s offensive line will get some much-needed help with the addition of Alabama transfer Brandon Kennedy, according to a source with direct knowledge of the transaction.
Kennedy, who has two years of eligibility remaining, was a backup center for the Crimson Tide who graduated in December.
Kennedy, 6-foot-3 and 305 pounds, played guard at Wetumpka High School, where he was recruited by Tennessee and Auburn before choosing Alabama.
The Vols’ offensive line looks to be anchored by redshirt center Ryan Johnson, but the battle will be on at guard until sophomore preseason All-SEC pick Trey Smith returns from the medical condition that sidelined him in spring drills.
Freshman Jerome Carvin (6-foot-4, 330 pounds) impressed in spring drills at guard, competing with sophomores Riley Locklear and Devante Brooks.
Kennedy will push for a starting spot immediately at one of the interior offensive line positions.
Redshirt freshman K’Rohjn Calbert is another player who will jump into the mix in fall drills once completely cleared from the knee surgery he underwent last fall.
Juniors Drew Richmond and Marcus Tatum are expected to enter fall drills with the first-team offensive line, though incoming junior college transfer Jahmir Johnson could challenge.
The Vols were very thin in spring drills, to the extent Coach Jeremy Pruitt needed to move defensive linemen over to the offensive line to ensure there was enough depth.
Here’s a look at how the depth chart might look entering fall camp, though the minute Trey Smith is cleared to play he’ll be a starter and things will shift:
- LT Drew Richmond, (6-5, 309, Jr.) 13 starts
- LG Jerome Carvin (6-4, 330, Fr.) 0 starts
- C Ryan Johnson (6-6, 300, So.) 4 starts
- RG Riley Locklear (6-5, 295, So.) 2 starts
- RT Marcus Tatum (6-6, 281, Jr.) 3 starts
- G-T Trey Smith (6-6, 320, So.) 12 starts
- G Devante Brooks (6-5, 282, So.) 4 starts
- G Joe Keeler (6-6, 279, Jr.) 0 starts
- G Ollie Lane (6-5, 285, Fr.) 0 starts
- G Tanner Antonutti (6-5, 260, Fr.) 0 starts
- T K’Rohhn Calbert (6-5, 285, Fr.) 0 starts
- T Jahmir Johnson (6-5, 290, So.) 0 starts
- T Nathan Niehaus (6-6, 285, So.) 0 starts