Thursday, February 21, 2013
Strategy to improve Vols recruiting
By Brent Sobleski
Tennessee finished with the 29th ranked recruiting class according to ESPN Recruiting Nation. A solid effort from the program considering it experienced a coaching change in December. But the class itself only ranked 11th among the SEC.
If Tennessee wants to recruit at the same level as it's conference counterparts, it will have become a national recruiter once again. One state in particular could be the key to the Volunteers' future success on the recruiting trail.
'Tennessee has a history of success with California players," John Adams of GoVolsXtra.com wrote. "It should take advantage of that. And establish itself as the best SEC alternative on the West Coast."
Tennessee already offered four ESPN Watch List recruits from the state of California. The Volunteers' staff should concentrate on Dwight Williams (Gardena, Calif./Junipero Serra), Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom) and teammates Dallis Todd (La Miranda, Calif./La Miranda) and Tyler Luatua as its top targets to set the tone of the current class plus help recruit other western prospects.
"Everywhere Tennessee turns in the Southeast, it’s running into flourishing programs: Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama, Florida, even Ole Miss now," Adams continued.
"California is a different ballgame. There, you’re competing with Pac-12 schools. There, you would stand out."
Kentucky, Ole Miss and Vanderbilt have shown over the past year the pull of the SEC and how even the non-powerhouse programs in the league can recruit at an elite level as a result.