Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt said the Vols addressed their needs at cornerback with the 2018 signing class.
However, because the Vols did not sign a true cornerback in this cycle, there does appear to be a hole at the position. Pruitt doesn’t seem to think so.
“Well, who said cornerback was a need in this class?” Pruitt said last week. “To me, I know some of the guys on our team and we got guys that can play cornerback. I think all of those guys can play multiple spots. So, I feel like we addressed our needs at the position.”
It’s time to look at the Vols’ biggest misses in the Class of 2018. This recruiting cycle will be remembered for striking out on top cornerback prospects.
Overall, Pruitt did a solid job in his first recruiting class. He and his staff put together a good class in about two months’ time.
Here are some prospects who were never committed to Tennessee and would have taken the class from good to great.
If National Signing Day occurred about a month earlier, Olaijah Griffin could be on Rocky Top. He spent the Under Armour All-America game with Tennessee signee Alontae Taylor and the two seemed to be pretty good friends.
Griffin could have played immediately for the Vols. It’s tough to close out Southern California prospects, though, when USC is pushing hard.
Pruitt took his shot and there’s no shame coming up short on this one.
This one ended about the same way as Griffin’s recruitment.
Isaac Taylor-Stuart was pursued heavily by the Tennessee coaching staff. He was intrigued by being coached by Pruitt and early playing time.
At the end of the day, playing for USC was too much for him pass up. At one moment, it appeared USC’s class might be too full, which opened the door for the Vols. But the Trojans were able to make it work, obviously.
LB Quay Walker
This one probably stings the most for Vols fans.
Quay Walker was a Tennessee lean until the last few days before National Signing Day. He even picked up a Tennessee hat during his announcement before throwing it off to the side and picking Georgia.
The Vols are switching to a 3-4 system and could have used Walker next season. His choice of SEC East rival Georgia hurts even more.
Vols fans are not likely to forget about Walker spurning them on Signing Day.
Jacob Copeland got a lot of fans excited when he said the Vols were near the top of his list after the Pruitt hire.
Tennessee got him on campus for an official visit, but there seemed to be a disconnect of some kind. The Vols never really picked up much traction after that.
He seemed to be an Alabama or Florida lean throughout January.
There supposedly was some worry in Gainesville, that Copeland was going to surprise everyone and pick the Vols on Signing Day. I think he always was going to end up at Florida.
Pruitt swung for the fences with four prospects who could have contributed next season. The hope has to be with a full year to build relationships, he’ll be able to reel in a few more of these top prospects in 2019.
The post Prospects who could have taken Tennessee’s recruiting class from good to great. appeared first on SEC Country.