Joshua Palmer shuts down recruitment, commits to Vols

Tennessee continues to stay hot on the recruiting trail, adding its third commitment in eight days as Joshua Palmer picked the Volunteers on Tuesday night.

Joshua Palmer is a Canadian that moved to Florida, committed to a school in New York, visited a prominent program in California and decided Tennessee will be home, sweet home.

The 6-foot-3, 185-pound wide receiver joined the Vols’ pledge sheet Tuesday evening.

“First, I’d like to thank all of my coaches at St. Thomas Aquinas for putting me in the position I am in today as well as my parents and family for guiding me through the hard and easy times being away from home,” Palmer said on social media. “I also want to thank the coaches that I have built strong relationships with during this recruitment process and helping me realize that there are coaches that care about your future. With this I’m proud to announce that I am shutting down my recruitment and happy to say that I will be extending my academic and athletic careers at the University of Tennessee.”

Palmer originally committed to Syracuse back on June 22. He backed off that decision because of a desire to visit other programs this winter. He officially visited Tennessee (Jan. 13-15) and UCLA (Jan. 20-22) before arriving at his decision to be a Volunteer.

Palmer told InsideTennessee that his time in Knoxville revealed few surprises about how historic Tennessee football is.

“I know they’re beasts,” he said after his official visit to Rocky Top. “When I seen that, I was actually happy that I wasn’t surprised. Tennessee is a good place, I really enjoyed it.

“The facilities are great. I’d never been to Tennessee before. When I went there, I was very surprised with what they can do with the doctors and the weightroom and the training facilities — all that stuff.”

Tennessee's leading receiver last season, Josh Malone (972 receiving yards, 11 touchdowns), declared for the NFL Draft earlier this month, vacating over 60 targets. Palmer told IT that he sees an opportunity to play right away in Knoxville.

Palmer gives the Big Orange 28 commits for 2017, including seven from the state of Florida. The class ranks No. 10 in the nation according to Scout on Tuesday night.

The Scout three-star prospect and the Sunshine State’s No. 13-ranked wide receiver in the 2017 class is a Toronto native that moved south prior to the 2015 season to accelerate his football career, choosing to live with his aunt and uncle.

Newspaper editors and reporters voted Palmer to the Florida Class 7A All-State second team.

Palmer enjoyed competing with and against some of the best prep players around as St. Thomas Aquinas won the 2016 FHSAA Class 7A state championship with a 45-6 victory over Plant.

The Raiders also took part in the GEICO State Champions Bowl Series and defeated Bingham of South Jordan, Utah, by a score of 33-25 in Frisco, Texas, on Dec. 23. Another future Volunteer, defensive lineman Kivon Bennett, was the game’s most valuable player after notching five tackles, a half sack and two forced fumbles.

St. Thomas Aquinas also won the 7A championship in 2015, defeating Viera 45-10. The year prior, the Raiders beat up Osceola 31-0 for the state title.

Photo by Danny Parker

Tennessee wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni

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