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. Check out previous editions here. In this edition, we discuss Tennessee and Patrick Lucas, who will take a visit to Knoxville this weekend.
Hosting Patrick Lucas
Tennessee has been hosting plenty of big recruiting names in the Class of 2019 the past few weeks. The list will include defensive tackle Patrick Lucas this weekend.
Lucas received an offer from Tennessee in late January and has been on the Vols’ radar since. He speaks with defensive line coach Tracy Rocker the most from the Vols.
Lucas is going on the trip with pretty normal expectations for the weekend.
“A great experience and a feel for Tennessee,” Lucas told SEC Country. “I’ve never been up there before. So, get some new scenery.”
The Wetumpka, Ala., native will receive the grand tour of the facilities, campus and Neyland Stadium.
The coaching staff pushes a similar message to Lucas as it does the other recruiting targets: “Come to Tennessee and help rebuild the program into something special.”
“It would [be appealing],” Lucas said. “It’d be fun to start something new at a program that was elite back in the day. [Coach Jeremy Pruitt] wants to get it back to where it was. I would take pride in doing that.”
Lucas also takes pride in making a difference on the field. He wants to play and make an early impact, which could be a positive for the Vols depending on how the defensive tackle position looks in 2018.
“Playing time and the depth chart will be factors,” Lucas said. “Will I have a chance and possibly play?
“Even without that, it’ll be how I feel on campus. Do I feel at home is the main thing.”
The 6-foot-3, 255-pound defensive tackle fits the role Pruitt wants from the position: a stout lineman who can fit through blocks and stop the run in the middle. He believes he can bring this to any school along with a personality that can help team chemistry.
“I bring a lot of energy,” Lucas said. “Chasing plays downfield with my motor to keep going. Even if I’m tired, to keep going.
“I like to laugh, too. Bring some sense of humor.”
Lucas rates as a 3-star prospect and the No. 33 defensive tackle in the class, according to the 247Sports composite rankings. With his size and motor, it’s not out of the question that he can become a 4-star prospect with a solid summer and fall.
Pruitt and the staff are certainly high on him.
Completion for Patrick Lucas
Lucas told SEC Country the Vols are among the school recruiting him the hardest. Florida and Georgia Tech round out the list.
He has already visited Auburn, UAB and Alabama, though the Crimson Tide have not extended an offer.
I get the sense the rising senior would place Alabama near the top of his list if it offered. He came away very impressed with Alabama on his visit last weekend. How Alabama trains its players to stay injury free and keep them on the field stood out the most.
Lucas plans to check out Florida and possibly Georgia Tech before the summer. There aren’t any plans to date.
Tennessee getting in early on Lucas can pay dividends down the line. The Vols struck out on a number of top recruits in 2018 because there wasn’t enough time to build strong enough relationships.
Even if an Alabama joins Lucas’ recruitment, the Vols will always have the edge that they pursued him earlier.
Adonis Otey speaks with Jeremy Pruitt
To shift gears, in-state cornerback Adonis Otey had a very interesting tweet this week.
Great talk with Coach Pruitt and I’ll be at Jr day on this Sat …..🍊🍊🍊
— Adonis Otey 🤘🏾 (@d1dizzle) March 1, 2018
Otey is a former Tennessee commit who didn’t receive much attention from the new coaching staff early on. This appears to have changed, which is good for all involved.
Otey plays a position of need and has enough talent to help Tennessee in the future. He also is from Murfreesboro, Tenn., and is close with a number of top prospects in the middle of the state.
Showing interest in Otey is a good move by the coaching staff.
This will be an interesting recruitment to follow.
Miss a previous edition? Find all your SEC Country Tennessee Vols recruiting news here.