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 commit Adrian Martinez and the current coaching staff and their efforts on the recruiting trail this week.
Adrian Martinez update
Tennessee might have to start worrying about 4-star quarterback commit Adrian Martinez. He already has taken an official visit to Ohio State and is picking up momentum all over the country.
According to a report from Steve Wiltfong of 247Sports, Scott Frost already has reached out to Martinez to offer a scholarship to play at Nebraska.
“[Frost] said with my help they will make Nebraska the No. 1 offense in the country just like at UCF,” Martinez told Wiltfong on Saturday night.
Martinez has said he wants to wait to see who Tennessee’s new coach is, then make his decision. I still believe Tennessee is the leader in the clubhouse, but the past few weeks will put pressure on the new coach.
UCF put up video-game numbers this season under Frost. Golden Knights quarterback Milton McKenzie threw for 3,795 yards and 35 touchdowns, and also rushed for 497 yards and 7 touchdowns.
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Frost’s system has to appeal to a dual-threat quarterback like Martinez.
Would a possible Les Miles hiring excite Martinez the same way as playing for Frost at Nebraska? Probably not.
Tennessee does have a relationship with Martinez, even if it was with the former staff. He enjoyed an in-home visit with quarterback coach Mike Canales, though he’s unlikely to be retained.
The new staff will have its work cut out for it when it comes to building relationships with the other 14 commits and recruiting targets. Martinez seems like he’s becoming a tougher commitment by the day.
Martinez will take an official visit to Missouri this weekend. The Tigers have an offense that has put up points in bunches this season behind record-setting quarterback Drew Lock.
Tennessee likely won’t keep all three of its quarterbacks on its roster from this season. Martinez could provide some valuable depth at the position. Also, none of the returning quarterbacks was particularly impressive this season, which could give Martinez a slight chance to compete for early playing time.
No big official visits
The Vanderbilt game was supposed to be the big official visit weekend when Tennessee was going to make its last push for some of its top targets in the Class of 2018. There weren’t any big fish on campus for their official visit, though.
This is clearly because there isn’t a coach in place. There is no sense in having a top target waste his official visit to Knoxville and spend his time with a coaching staff that likely won’t be there any longer the next week.
New athletic director Phillip Fulmer must find a new a new coach, quickly. The Vols can’t delay the official visits much longer.
The Vols have important targets scheduled to visit the next two weekends.
Alontae Taylor is Tennessee’s No. 2 target regardless of the new coach. He is scheduled to take his official visit the weekend of Dec. 8, as first reported by Austin Price of Volquest. Taylor was committed for more than a year before backing off his pledge two weeks ago, when coach Butch Jones was fired.
He knows what Tennessee has to offer; it’s a visit to see what the new coach has planned for Taylor. The visit will be crucial to bringing Taylor back into the fold. Tennessee doesn’t hold a commitment from a wide receiver this cycle. Securing a commitment from Taylor would be a huge win for the new coach.
Tennessee will host another important recruit the weekend of Dec. 15, when defensive end commit Jamarcus Chatman will take his official visit. He’s been steady in his commitment, but I could see him looking elsewhere if Tennessee completely botches this hire.
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