InsideTennessee Recruiting Mailbag

It's time for another edition of the InsideTennessee Recruiting Mailbag. A premium feature for our membership, where you get to ask the recruiting questions and our experts supply the answers.

What is your estimate on the pace of commits for the rest of 2011? We have speculated on the board that they will be slower in coming because of limited available scholly numbers, but the overall trend has been earlier and earlier - so I'm curious as to y'all's opinion on this.

James' Answer: Now we have two, one that won't be here until a year and a half, expect Dooley and his staff to be very creative in ways of putting together plans etc. I would say they will probably be at least No. 5 by the end of the summer, but if they aren't don't panic and don't expect Dooley to.

Hampton's Answer: It will be pretty slow. I think by the end of summer last year we had something like 10 commits. I think it would be a great sign if we are at 6 or 7 by the end of this summer.

As Stallion stated we will be slow on recruiting because of scholly numbers. Others say we will be because of the depth that we are starting to build. That said, Why do are SEC foes not have these same problems? (I.e AL,GA,FL) Is it because we can no longer can sale playing time in certain positions? What is our chances at the three RB's in state?Who is the highest ranked recruit we lead for? Obrien? Who will commit next?

James' Answer: Georgia, Florida and Texas all have fertile recruiting grounds. Tennessee has to reach out side its borders for the top athletes available. Tennessee still has a need at depth at almost every position, and the need to increase the talent level at several. Tennessee gets Kimbrow, Redmond and Robinson if they offer Redmond. I think it will come. O'Brien and possibly another lineman comes to mind.

Hampton's Answer: UT is not a real easy sell. We are 18-20 over the last 3 years and a different coach each of those seasons. We have to start showing progress on the field to really light it up in the spring. Most of all, Dooley is very methodical so I would just get used to it. I think we will get Kimbrow and have a good shot at Robinson. I don't think we will get Mathers right now. He says he wants to leave the state. Yea, I'd say O'Brien is the highest rank guy we lead for. I would say one of Bowles, Jelks, or Borne will be our next commit.

How many signees do you anticipate being in-state players? And which ones are the most probable to sign with UT, and who are the ones UT will have a tough time signing?

James' Answer: Kimbrow, Redmond, Robinson, Jelks, Bowles and Cole would be a great haul.

Hampton's Answer: I expect to sign right around 5-6 TN guys. I think we will get Kimbrow, Bowles, Redmond, and Jelks. We have a good shot at Robinson. I do not think Mathers will sign with us right now.

Have we offered JC DT Daniel McCullers? Is yes, what is the probability we can sign him?

James' Answer: Yes it appears the Vols have offered, he will end up having a lot more offers before all said and done.

Hampton's Answer: Yes we have offered him. It's hard to tell right now because we are his only offer. It depends on what other offers he gets and how much UT really likes him.

I believe Taylor and Deloach are two of our most important recruits in this class. Where exactly do we stand with them?

James' Answer: I like Tennessee's chances with both, it will be a battle for both and look for both offer sheets to explode after spring evaluations.

Hampton's Answer: We are in their top 3 with UGA and GT.

I have read in several places that the Vols lead for Jelks and Bowles. Any thoughts on why they have not pulled the trigger to commit?

James' Answer: If Tennessee truly wants Jelks there isn't any way he isn't a Vol. I think Bowles will be also. I'm like Hampton on this one, I think they will pull the trigger during camps.

Hampton's Answer: I would say they haven't because it's so early in the process. I doubt they will wait much longer. They should be Vols by the end of summer at the latest.

With the QB situation; who we have in house, who has committed elsewhere, etc., do you think we take one, and if so, who is the most likely prospect? I am a little concerned that we only have three after this year. One could transfer, one could get hurt, and we could be left short at the position.

James' Answer: I kinda disagree here, I don't see them taking one just for the sake of doing so.

Hampton's Answer: Yes, I think we will end up taking one. I am not sure who it will be. Cyler Miles has an offer but I doubt he will leave the West. We seem to like Chad Kelly quite a bit but still haven't offered him.

Assuming grades are not the problem, what semester and year will Corey Smith be on campus? Are his 3 JUCO semesters summer '11, fall '11, and spring '12? And what's the story on the kid needing to go the JUCO route so early?

James' Answer: Hampton is correct. He will play one fall, practice in the spring and redshirt the other fall semester. The key here is that he must graduate. Summer classes will count towards this. If he graduates in December of 2012 he will be here in January of 2013.

Hampton's Answer: No, summer does not count. he has to be in JUCO for 2 fall semesters. If all goes according to plan, Smith will be here as an EE in the spring of '13. I am not exactly sure, but I think he has already taken 4 years worth of high school classes. There was some problem when he transferred that messed everything up. His grades aren't terrible.

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