KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — 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.
Tennessee will host its second major Junior Day of 2017 this Saturday, once again welcoming a litany of important in-state targets. The Vols will also host a greater number of out-of-state prospects compared to two weeks ago.
Key visitors this Saturday include 4-star defensive end Greg Emerson from Northside and 4-star defensive tackle Brant Lawless from Nashville Christian.
Initially, Emerson and Lawless — two top UT targets — were set to be joined by 4-star defensive tackle D’Andre Litaker from Riverdale, who planned to make a return trip to Knoxville after attending the first Junior Day in February.
However, the #BIG3 will have to wait to get on campus at the same time, as Litaker will trip to Louisville with a number of other in-state prospects before a 7-on-7 tournament in Gatlinburg.
Still, Saturday is an opportunity for lots of Tennessee targets to get face-time with the Vols complete 2017 staff. Butch Jones hired receivers coach Kevin Beard from FIU earlier this week, filling the final vacancy.
With a full staff, Jones & Co. will also host other notables such as Virginia tight end James Mitchell, Memphis cornerback Rayshad Williams and athlete Kundarrius Taylor. Carver (Ga.) safety Quindarious Monday should also be in town, as will 4-star Rome (Ga.) defensive tackle Jamarcus Chatman.
Vols 2018 commits Cade Mays and Alontae Taylor are expected to return to campus, too, although Taylor may not be able to get to town depending on what happens in his 7-on-7 tourney.
Tennessee will also welcome a number of 2019 targets, including offensive tackle Jackson Lampley of Montgomery Bell Academy.
Tennessee is competing with Clemson and Auburn to get prospects on campus this weekend, as both programs are also hosting big-time Junior Days.
Top offensive line target Jalil Irvin (Stone Mountain, Ga.) confirmed to SEC Country that he’ll be at Auburn this weekend, but has planned a trip to Knoxville for early March.
2018 defensive tackle Darnell Jefferies, an emerging prospect from Newton (Ga.), was scheduled to attend Tennessee’s event this weekend, but is tripping to Clemson with a number of his Rams teammates. He plans to get back to Tennessee soon, though.
Blackmon 4-star tailback Master Teague will also be at Clemson.
Junior tailback Lyn-J Dixon from Taylor County (Ga.) might opt to visit Clemson instead of Tennessee this weekend, too.
Finally, a number of top 2019 targets from Grayson (Ga.) will be at Clemson this weekend — guys like Owen Pappoe, Ronald Thompkins and Kenyatta Watson, among others.
Meanwhile, IMG Academy, a football factory in Bradenton, Fla., is taking its annual barnstorming tour across the Southeast this week. The program loaded with premier prospects its set to see South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Clemson over the next few days.
The Vols have offered several prospects at IMG, including 5-star defensive end Xavier Thomas and 4-star receiver Joshua Moore, formally of Yokum, Texas and a prospect who briefly called Tennessee his leader last fall.
Other Tennessee targets on the trip include linebacker Mike Jones Jr., defensive end Stephon Wynn and tailback T.J. Pledger.
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