Tennessee recruiting: Receivers coach Kevin Beard makes strong impression on first recruiting weekend
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Kevin Beard wasted no time getting his guys in order after being officially announced as the new Tennessee receivers’ coach on Wednesday.
By Sunday, Beard had extended offers to three top flight receivers in the class of 2018 — four-star Kenan Jones and three-stars Demarcus Gregory and Dominick Watt. He also extended a big offer to 247Sports’ No. 5 receiver in the 2019 class Cameron Coleman.
With a large IMG Academy contingent on campus Friday and an important junior day Saturday, Beard got a chance to interact with a ton of potential targets, including Gregory and Coleman. The former walked away impressed from his interaction with Beard.
“He’s a straight up coach,” Gregory said in a text message to SEC Country. “He’s [going to] keep it real with you and I liked that.”
Because Beard already had SEC ties as a quality control assistant at Georgia last year, he already has a leg up on a few of the recruits including Watt who already had an offer from Georgia when he received his offer from the Vols over the weekend. IMG Academy receiver Joshua Moore, who already had an offer from Tennessee and visited over the weekend, also had a very close relationship with Beard from his recruitment with Georgia.
“Our relationship is already there, already strong,” Moore said. “He recruited me at Georgia, so that’s when it all started when I first met him. It’s not like a new receivers coach that I don’t know. The good thing is he’s like another father figure to me so that’s always good.”
A look at the group of receivers that Beard offered first may also give a glimpse into what kind of receivers he may be moving up his board.
Gregory, Watt and Jones are all big-bodied receivers. Gregory and Jones both stand at 6-foot-3 while Watt is 6-foot-1, and all three are 195 pounds or heavier. That goes along with Tennessee’s current receiver makeup, going along the lines of players like Jauan Jennings and Josh Smith, so maybe the Vols’ board won’t be changing all that much.
Of course, then there are the obvious playmakers like Moore and Coleman, who don’t fit that mold but are all the same near the top of Beard’s wish list.
“Coach Beard, he just likes ballers,” Moore said. “When I first met him at Georgia, the first thing he told me was, the reason why he’s recruiting me is because I’m a dog. He recruits dogs, he recruits the best of the best. That should say it all right there. If you can ball, you can ball no matter how big or how small you are. He’s going to develop them either way so that’s not really a big thing.”
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