Welcome to this weeks edition of The Hill. Before we get started, I wanted to thank you all for your patience as we transition to the fanvsfan network. We are very excited about the opportunity to be on this platform, and look forward to owning all of you fun boys from rival fan bases. Anyway, on with the news.
At this point in the year, no news is good news. The days are withering down and camp is right around the corner. This offense is going to be something scary to watch. There should be more information regarding how the team looks once steam picks up, but right now I am very intrigued about Pig Howard. "Da Pig" as many of you call him is going to be a versatile player that sees snaps all over the field. He brings speed that we have not had in quite a while, but most importantly, he can hold on to the ball. He is a competitive young man and is always looking to get better.
The July camp is less than a week away and I would not be surprised to see some big names and a commit or two at the camp.
Cameron Sutton is a guy that has really gained momentum. Ansley likes that he has prototypical size and speed to play press coverage. It is true that he tried to commit to Florida and they refused the commitment. I have changed my stance on this kid as well. I think Florida really missed the boat on him. He looks to have the type of recruitment that was seen with Brian Randolph. He has more SEC offers than Randolph had at this point in time.
Jalen Reeves-Maybin- I have remained strong in my belief that we are in good position with JRM. I can remember the first time I saw the coaches recruit this kid. It was at a basketball game and I remember asking someone around me who the kid was. The coaches knew how special he was, and it was evident with how much attention he was getting from the coaches. Jay Graham never left his side. He went in the tunnel with CDD and then came out and talked to Sal. The rest of the region has caught on to Reeves-Maybin, and it has become even more obvious that he would be a great player for the Vols. I would expect him on defense. He plans to visit next week and spend a lot of time with Sal and Ansley.
Jordan Wilkins- If you would have asked me about this instate running back three weeks ago I would have said that I do not think much is going on with him. He looked to be a lock for Auburn. While they are still in the picture, he has been listening to our coaching staff. He wants to make one more visit before he decides and that visit will be to Rocky Top. Auburn appears to be pushing for Derrick Green or Tyshon Dye, but while doing this, I believe they are missing out on a stud. Wilkins has great speed for a back that is above six feet tall and weighs upwards of 210 pounds. I think the coaches want two backs in this class, and Wilkins is a very realistic option to be one of them.
Tarean Folston- I will reiterate that Hinshaw loves this guy, but I have changed my stance on him a bit due to the reemergence of Jordan Wilkins. I think Wilkins takes priority over Folston, but if he commits elsewhere, Tarean would be right back in the hunt for one of those spots.
Derrick Henry- I updated the board on a situation that I heard about regarding a group of guys wanting to play together. I am unsure about this now, because Reuben Foster just committed to Auburn, and I do not believe they are a factor for the players in that pact. All I can say regarding Henry is that he is very excited about being coached by Jay Graham. Graham could really help the Vols out in this department.
Jason Hatcher, Tahaan Goodman, and Paul Harris- These are players that are coveted by USC but may be pushed out due to a lack of spots. Rumor is that Sebastian LaRue may be told to look around. Harris would likely slide into the spot left vacant by LaRue. I think we will ultimately get Jason Hatcher. He wants to commit after his first game. I like where we are here. He has stated that we have everything he is looking for. Goodman will be one to watch for a while. I doubt USC has a spot for him and he is intrigued by the SEC. Byron Moore will be the lead recruiter for this kid. Goodman is a playmaker. Adding him to Vonn Bell and JRM would be a great haul.
Brendan Langley and Will Earley- These are two DBs that are still on the board. Of course the Alexander brothers are there, but I am not going to speak on them until they visit. Langley, in my opinion will be swayed by UGA. They were desperate and offered his teammate, and Dooley has made it clear that he will not do the same. Alabama is still a major player, but I just do not get the feeling that they will take him. Earley is a different story. He is 6 feet 2 inches and runs a 4.4. He is a little underdeveloped as far as footwork goes, but the coaches like his potential. He has shined at other SEC camps and if he does the same in Knoxville, I would expect an offer.
Naim Mustafaa, Antonio Riles- Theese are players that the Vols are recruiting very hard. Mustafaa is coming back for a visit. I do not expect Riles to be a Vol but we have shown no signs of quitting on him.
Marquion Lane- The athletic brother of the Florida Marlin visited today and we are looking at him at WR. He is enamored with FSU, so we will see how it plays out. He has good size and speed and is someone that has legitimate offers from high profile programs.
Carl Lawson and DeMarcus Walker- Both are expected to visit soon. Our chances are better with Lawson, but Sal will not give up on Walker. He is favoring UF and UA at the moment. His top two are common knowledge, but I think he is interested in the fact that he can play early at Tennessee and would likely play multiple positions.
A name we are all sleeping on is Arizona athlete Chauntez Jackson. He plays DE/TE and we are recruiting him on the offensive side of the ball. He is fast and would present huge mismatches if he develops.
Finally, people asked last week to add information about Vol Basketball and hoops recruiting. Unfortunately, this is just not my area. I have heard what we all have heard. Nick King, Robert Hubbs and Austin Nichols are guys that many Cuonzo Martin doubters did not believe we would be factors for. The good news is: They were wrong and we are factors for all three. Hopefully someone else will be able to give some good information about Volunteer basketball for Edition 3 of “The Hill.”