Tennessee is looking to recapture its glory from the 1990s. Join us daily at SEC Country for the latest Tennessee recruiting news and notes on the next crop of Volunteers. In this edition, we discuss if Tennessee commit Alontae Taylor would consider another school.
More Nashville games coming in the future?
Recruiting the central part of Tennessee will continue to be vital to the success of the Volunteers football program as the Nashville area grows.
With an increased number of talented in-state players coming from a certain region, Tennessee should do everything in its power to keep a presence in the middle of the state.
One such way of keeping the Vols brand strong in and around Nashville will be to continue playing games there.
Tennessee has played four games in Nashville in the last three seasons, including two SEC road games at Vanderbilt. The Vols also faced Bowling Green in the season opener at Nissan Stadium in 2015 and played Nebraska in the Music City Bowl last season.
Playing games in Nashville in the future has been something athletic director John Currie has thought about.
“We are still in the evaluative period of talking about it,” Currie said at a Big Orange Caravan stop last week in Nashville. “Candidly, coach [Butch] Jones and I have talked about scheduling but not extensively. The state of Tennessee is a priority. Knoxville, Tenn., is a priority. The middle Tennessee region is a priority.
“We just have to do that in a smart way that makes sense for our fans and the program. One of the challenges of neutral-site games, if you will, though we don’t consider Nashville neutral, we consider it a Tennessee town, is having the right kind of matchup that makes sense.”
The right opponent would have to present itself for the Vols.
“We’ll continue to look for the right kind of opportunities to be here as often as we can,” Currie said.
The Class of 2018 has some top players from the middle of the state: Brant Lawless (Nashville Christian School), Camron Johnson (Brentwood Academy), Master Teague (Blackman) and Jaylon King (Ensworth).
The Class of 2019 appears to be even more loaded with talent from the Nashville area including Jackson Lampley (Montgomery Bell Academy), Ani Izuchukwu (Davidson Academy), Trey Knox (Blackman), Wesley Walker (Ensworth) and Adonis Otey (Blackman). All are 4-star prospects, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
Jones and his staff will continue to recruit the Nashville stars, especially with more talent coming through every cycle.
Playing games in front of large swarms of orange-clad fans at a neutral-site game is one way for the Vols to stand out in recruiting.
Memphis athlete Cam Jones continues to trend toward Tennessee
Memphis native Cam Jones has leaned toward Tennessee for a while. He sent out a tweet Sunday night confirming the thought-to-be favorite.
— 🌹Cam Jones🌹 (@KingCam_1) July 17, 2017
Jones, a 3-star athlete, likely will play linebacker in college. The Vols don’t have a linebacker committed in the Class of 2018 but likely will bring on one or two.
I wrote about Jones and a few other options for Tennessee last week.
Jones’ top 5 list includes Memphis, Indiana, Mississippi State and Missouri.
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Correction: Camron Johnson’s first name was misspelled in the original story. SEC Country regrets the error.