Gene Swindoll -

Mississippi's No. 1 cornerback Jaylon Reed heading to Tennessee

Tennessee now has picked up eight verbal commitments in April as Magnolia State cornerback Jaylon Reed declared his intention Thursday to play for the Big Orange.

One recruiting target after another is claiming a spot on future Tennessee football rosters.

Jaylon Reed is the latest as the cornerback selected the Volunteers in a declaration made over social media on Thursday afternoon.

The Olive Branch (Miss.) High School junior chose Tennessee over offers from prominent programs such as Georgia, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Oregon, South Carolina and Vanderbilt.

The Volunteers placed their scholarship offer on the table March 9. Reed made the trip over to Knoxville both on Saturday for the DISH Orange & White game and back on March 25, 2016.

The Scout network ranks Reed as the No. 57 cornerback in the 2018 class, No. 23 in the South and No. 1 in Mississippi.

Between the 2018 and 2019 class, the Big Orange have now added eight verbal commitments in April. Reed became the second cornerback to pledge to Tennessee on Thursday as Murfreesboro-based sophomore Adonis Otey pulled the trigger just hours earlier.

With Clarksville’s Shatar McClay projected to play in the secondary on The Hill, the Volunteers now have two defensive backs pledged for 2018. Both McClay and Reed have unteachable length and both have enough weight on them now that they will not be terribly far from getting their bodies right for Southeastern Conference football.

Reed is the first Magnolia State talent to commit to Tennessee this recruiting cycle. In February, the Vols signed wide receiver Jordan Murphy out of Hattiesburg (Miss.) High School. Recruiting coordinator Robert Gillespie is Tennessee’s recruiter over that state.

In 2016, Reed accumulated 66 tackles (41 solo), six pass breakups and one sack.

Teams don’t often test Reed’s skills as he is known in the Magnolia State as one of the better corners in the region. He still lends a helping hand to the Olive Branch defense by never going up on plays, sometimes sprinting from halfway across the field to make tackles on ball carriers that seemingly were en route to paydirt.

In what is sometimes a rare quality for cornerbacks contemplating a “business decision,” Reed is quite aggressive and is not afraid to help out in slowing down the opposition’s running game. He’s a sure tackler and sometimes comes off the edge to blitz quarterbacks from the blindside.

Junior Highlights: Olive Branch CB Jaylon Reed

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