Coach Spotlight: Sheldon Day

In the last couple of years the Vols have done well recruiting in Big Ten territory. The class of 2011 brought in Michigan's DeAnthony Arnett. Zach Fulton and Matt Milton, both from Illinois, were part of the UT class of 2010. This year the staff is hoping to land a big fish in Sheldon Day out of the Hoosier State from national powerhouse Warren Central High School in Indianapolis.

"Last year we had a defensive lineman in Kris Harley (4-star/ who signed with Virginia Tech," said Warren Central head coach John Hart. "There are a lot of similarities between Kris and Sheldon. Sheldon has longer arms and is taller at about 6-2, 280. He runs exceptionally well and is a great student of the game."

Coming off a state championship season in '09, the Warren Central Warriors went 8-2 in 2010 and were up in the 1st round of the state playoffs by Lawrence Central. Day was outstanding in his first year as a starter leading the team in sacks with five, making 53 tackles, nine tackles for loss and a safety, and two forced fumbles.

"What makes Sheldon such an excellent defensive lineman is his explosiveness off the ball," said Hart. "He has a tremendous "get off". Based on media publications, he's projected to be one of the best defensive linemen in the state next season, and you probably wouldn't get any argument if you called him the best defensive tackle in the state. People can't maintain blocking on Sheldon. He does an excellent job getting off his blocker. With his tools and the more we teach him, he continues to improve his game."

Day received numerous regional offers during his junior season. His first BCS school offer came from Cincinnati. He now has a long list including TCU, Notre Dame, Michigan, Penn State, Virginia Tech, North Carolina and Tennessee.

"Coach (Harry) Hiestand and I are longtime friends," said Hart. "He's been in touch a lot with either Sheldon or myself on behalf of Tennessee.

"Sheldon is truly a great kid, and I mean that. After he received his first BCS offer he didn't say anything about it. He told me he didn't want the other players to feel bad. That's the kind of character Sheldon has. He's excellent in the classroom with a 3.8 GPA in advanced placement classes."

One other thing Sheldon Day has in common with Kris Harley is being a standout out in the shot put. Coach Hart thinks he'll qualify for the state championships this track season. Day's other extracurricular activities include being a part of the schools Finance Academy and Minority Engineering Program. He wears No. 91 for the football Warriors.

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