Tennessee’s Next Defensive Targets in the 2021 class


Tennessee was red hot on the recruiting trail in April and May, picking up 15 commits in this class. With the COVID-19 pandemic freezing on-campus visits and host days, Tennessee’s surge of recruits was very unexpected. This slew of commits included two five stars in the name of Dylan Brooks from Roanoke, Alabama, and Terrence Lewis from Hollywood, Florida. National media took notice, and the Vols were a hot topic for much of this time. With limited spots left, the big question now is who’s next in Tennessee’s 2021 class.


Five-star linebacker Smael Mondon headlines Tennessee’s remaining targets on defense being the 25th ranked overall player and the number two outside linebacker according to 247 Sports composite rankings. Mondon is from Dallas, Georgia, sitting firmly in one of Jeremy Pruitt’s favorite hotbeds for recruiting. He brings top tier speed and athleticism at the Linebacker position. Continuing, Four Star Prince Kollie is picking up steam in the recruiting world, picking up big-time offers. The Vols were not included in his top schools, but his recruitment is not yet over. Another prospect is Outside Linebacker Naquan Brown from Virginia. He recently committed to LSU, but the Vols may look to flip him. Tennessee will have to fight hard to get any of these prospects. It should be an interesting ride to National Signing Day.

Courtesy of 247sports.com

Defensive Line

Four-star Defensive Tackles Payton Page and Tyrion Ingrams-Dawkins are two highly coveted prospects from North Carolina. Both specialize in their size and strength. Another defensive lineman that Tennessee is recruiting hard is four-star Jahvaree Ritzie. Tennessee will have to attempt to flip Ritzie as he recently committed to North Carolina. All three have program changing potential and would be massive additions to the 2021 class. Tennessee has been pushing hard for Four-star Tywone Malone. The Vols look to add size, and Malone brings just that. We will see who Tennessee ends up with in the end.

Defensive Backs

The Secondary may be the position group with the most depth and talent on the team currently. However, the Vols may lose much of that talent after the season to the NFL draft. That makes recruiting defensive backs in 2021 crucial. Tennessee has been pursuing four-star Terrion Arnold hard. He is versatile enough to play both Safety and Cornerback. Another prospect that Tennessee looks to add is four-star Demarius McGhee. He has risen in the rankings lately. The Vols are pushing hard and will fight to get the athletic corner.


Many other targets remain on the board, but these are some that the Volunteers are recruiting the hardest. With more than five months left until the early signing period, many things can change. The current pandemic crisis will also be a factor. It will be interesting to see who Jeremy Pruitt ends up getting in Tennessee’s 2021 class.

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