The InsideTennessee.com Recruiting Mailbag is a weekly feature where our members get to ask our experts questions about the University of Tennessee's recruiting efforts.
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Was our chances of landing tight end prospect Rickey Parks hurt since Ga Tech has offered him as QB?
James' Answer: If he is will to play other positions UT's chances are good, if not, not very good at all at the QB position.
Hampton's answer: I think he wants to play QB so I don't think it helps us by any means.
Will there be any prospect athletic skills testing performed on Jr day?
James' Answer: No skills test etc are allowed. It's a day to educate prospects and their parents on the respected school, the recruiting process etc. More tours and presentations on what Tennessee has to offer. Some one on one time with prospects and the UT coaching staff.
Hampton's answer: No. It's just a regular unofficial visit as far as I'm aware.
1. What is the range of prospects we sign next year based on the current roster? 15-20, 20-25. 2. How many DTs, DEs, LBs and TEs do we sign next year? Who is our must get target in TN this year?
James' Answer: 1. I think the number will be between 17-22. 2. At least three defensive tackles, 2 defensive ends, three linebackers and one tight end. 3. That's a tough one, could be one of two or three guys. But Brian Kimbrow would be a good place to start, Nate Cole may be even higher rated than Kimbrow.
Hampton's answer: 1) Dooley will have to work the numbers but look for us to sign 20-25. Saban is a master at this so he learned from the best. 2) I will say 3 DTs, 3 DEs, 3 LBs, and 2 TEs. 3) Brian Kimbrow.
Following up on Vol77 previous question, who will be the top five targets from Tn next year?
Hampton's answer: I will say Brian Kimbrow, Drae Bowles, Nat Cole, Jovon Robinson, and Ben Still. Nat Parham, Graham Shuler, and Patton Robinette are 3 to keep an eye on. Their stocks are all rising fast.
Since this will be answered after Jr. Day, who really stood out this weekend? Anyone kind of off the radar that probably earned a scholly offer?
James' Answer: Well I can tell you how the prospects thought about the Vols Junior Day. There were several guys that passed the old adage "Pass the Eye Ball" test, I was very impressed with Jordan Jenkins, Imani Cross and Dan O'Brien. Everyone seemed really impressed with Tennessee's facilities, the coaching staff etc.
Hampton's answer: It wasn't a camp so they didn't do any drills or evals. Nobody new received an offer. It sounds like they really want Nat Parham back at camp this summer to try and earn an offer though.
Is Tennessee still focusing on high character good grade guys, or do you feel they'll loosen up with a few more high risk high reward type guys?
James' Answer: They will loosen up some, but won't give up their core values. That being said, you have to build your program, house etc with a solid foundation, that's what Dooley did with this last class. Meeting his needs while getting solid kids who will end up staying in the program. Each year expect him to sign a couple of guys that he wouldn't have signed the year before.
Hampton's answer: I think they will loosen up on that some, yes.
Don't you think that if CDD is serious about his direction, Jr. day may be too early to accept anyone. That's a long time to hold 'em in the corral.
James'Answer: I truly believe that Dooley and his staff will be slow and deliberate in taking commitments this spring, summer and fall. I think that anytime a certain guy that they truly desire wants to pull the trigger they will take him. Look at schools like Texas that are usually done by summer time in recruiting. Never too early to take a guy if they are truly the right match for your school.
Hampton's answer: No way you turn down a commit from somebody you want just because NSD is a long time away. Dooley did not lose one single decommit this past year so his track record is unblemished.
Our junior day has been criticized because it was later than most. Do you think the timing affected the turnout? Did Dooley make it later for a reason? Are we going to recruit Virginia/North Carolina/South Carolina more?
James' Answer: If you haven't been around Derek Dooley one on one, it's hard to realize how detail oriented he really is. Everything he does is for a reason. His timing was planned out, just like making it invite only. Dooley and his staff are more concerned building one on one relationship with the prospects and their families that bringing in huge numbers to impress the fans.
Hampton's answer: I do not think the timing has much to do with anything. I would much, much rather have our Junior Day on a different weekend than when Florida, Bama, and UGA have theirs.
I assume with the Cross commitment, we will be focused on the "shifty, home run threat third down rb" now?
James' Answer: Yes the next back will be a true speed back, although I think you will see Derek Dooley preference to be a more physical type of runner.
Hampton's answer: Yes and at the top of that list is Brian Kimbrow.