Kondolo talks Tennessee

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Tennessee fans were stunned when junior college offensive lineman Cody Clay decided to stay on the left coast at Azusa Pacific College, but the Volunteers aren't out of junior college options on the offensive line.

Next on the list was Fresno junior college big man Chongo Kondolo. Born in Zambia, Africa and transplated to Texas at age seven, Kondolo finished an official visit with the Vols that left him thoroughly impressed with Rocky Top.

"It went well," Kondolo said. "I was very excited to see that there is a lot of academic help and they have a very good football facility. You can definitely develop as a player and the help is there for you to become a good student. And then the tradition and the pride that a lot of the alumni have in Tennessee football — just the fans, 100,000 people every game. You have a chance to be a part of something."

Kondolo, who has racked up offers from Florida State, Nebraska, BYU, Illinois, Arkansas, Maryland, Syracuse, Fresno State and Nevada places Tennessee firmly at the top of his list.

Tennessee offensive line coach is after Chongo Kondolo for the Vols.
(Danny Parker/InsideTennessee.com)
"Definitely at the top," he said. "The help, the family, you have help in football, academics and off-the-field issues. People are there to talk even when you don't want to talk to your coaches. The family atmosphere is what I look for and at the same time I dreamed of playing in the SEC. The tradition, you have a chance to be a part of something special."

The 6-foot-4, 300 pounder is being recruited at guard and enjoyed meeting with recruiter and offensive line coach Don Mahoney Sunday morning.

"It was really today because I really got to sit down and talk with the coaches," Kondolo said of the highlight of his trip. "I talked with Antone Davis, Coach Jones, Coach Mahoney and I met with the NFL scouting coordinator. You really see how much help is really available here. You have a good chance to make it to the NFL and the academic help is there for you to be a good student if that doesn't work out."

Kondolo, who will have three years to play two seasons at his school of choice, says that one thing puts Tennessee out front — former head coach Derek Dooley's Vol For Life program.

"The Vol For Life program, a lot of schools say we will take care of you and help you be a better person, but (Illinois and BYU) didn't have a program like that," he said. "You can go in there and talk about anything, not just football."

Kondolo will visit Nebraska on Jan. 18 and decide on his final visit for Jan. 25 before making his decision just before signing day.

Stay tuned for more Tennessee football recruiting updates from InsideTennessee.com.


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