As if Jordan Pouncey didn’t already have enough to think about as a college destination must be chosen within the next 72 hours.
The 6-foot-3, 186-pound wide receiver from Winter Park, Florida, took an official visit to Knoxville over the weekend to compare Tennessee to other finalists with National Signing Day arriving Wednesday.
“Well, it was definitely eye-opening,” Pouncey said Sunday. “I’ve got a lot to think about in the next 48 hours.
“The thing that I like the most is definitely the people in the Sports Broadcasting, the VFL Network. That’s what I’m going to be doing, that’s who I’m going to be working with, and they’re all really cool people. They have a really great setup in that studio that they have in the football building. I really like that and obviously Neyland Stadium is one of the biggest stages in all of sports. So I like that a lot.”
The Winter Park (Fla.) High School wide receiver plans to choose between Miami (Fla.), Tennessee and Texas early Wednesday afternoon. He had been committed to Notre Dame for several months.
“Notre Dame is not in it,” Pouncey said. “Once I decommitted, all the players unfollowed me on social media, all the coaches unfollowed me and my family on social media. So they’re kind of just out of it.”
The multi-faceted prospect in the Orlando area was in Knoxville for the first time since the summer prior to his senior season.
“This visit we went a little more in-depth about the university in its entirety,” Pouncey said. “We got to see…I want to major in Sports Broadcasting, so we got to see the communications aspect of what they do. We went into the studio, they had me do a couple interviews and they had me read off the teleprompter and everything. So that was very cool. (Tennessee) coach (Butch) Jones, he has a bunch of connections with people in that field. So that was really cool. Then I got to hang out with the players a little bit more and kind of get a feel for the actual team.”
Pouncey said he “definitely” felt like a priority recruit in spite of having 28 commitments for the 2017 class.
“Tennessee’s been recruiting me since my freshman year. They really made it clear that they want me and need me. That’s always a good feeling."
Coaches informed the Scout three-star prospect that few scholarships remain in his class.
“The talked about that a little bit,” Pouncey said. “They want to make it work and coach Jones is going to do whatever he can.
“(Jones) just said if I do want to come there, just let him know.”
The Scout No. 10-ranked wide receiver in the Sunshine State was hosted by Tennessee freshman wideout Marquez Callaway and spent time with a pair of the Vols’ Florida-based pass catchers in Brandon Johnson and Latrell Williams.
To select between the Hurricanes, Longhorns and Volunteers, Pouncey said that relationships are of the most concern.
“Whoever is going to be coaching me for the next 3-5 years, that person needs to have my best interests,” Pouncey said. “The only way I can know that is if I have a good relationship with them. So that’s really the biggest thing for me. Then another thing is the opportunity to come in and play as a freshman.”
With Josh Malone declaring for the 2017 NFL Draft, the Volunteers must replace their top receiver. Passing game coordinator Zach Azzanni was going to break down film with Pouncey on Sunday but the standout had to return home for a banquet.
“We definitely talked about the depth chart a little bit,” Pouncey said. “They’re lacking at the receiver position. So they need them to come in. He said, ‘If you come here, you need to be ready to play.’”
Pouncey added that he had not dealt with Texas coaches until December. The Miami staff includes some “really cool guys.”
“I think they have to be (cool) since they coach for Miami,” Pouncey said. “They’re all very laid back and cool. I like them. I love them to death. They know what I want, they have my best interests at heart. It’s going to be a hard decision, and I feel like I’m going to hurt some feelings when I make my decision. I don’t want to do that.”
The playmaker resides in the same Orlando area that contains Tennessee tight end commit James Brown, who’s been in communication with Pouncey.
“I don’t know him personally, but we’ve been going back and forth since he found out that I scheduled my visit here. He’s a cool guy.”
Look for Pouncey to announce his college destination on Wednesday afternoon at 1:20 Eastern.
As a senior, Pouncey mostly competed at running back, carrying the football 86 times for 768 yards with 12 touchdowns. He added 31 receptions for 431 yards.
In 2015, Pouncey reeled in just 17 catches but turned those receptions into 515 yards and seven TDs. He also saw time in the secondary, recording 29 tackles, five pass breakups and an interception.