Rating the Redshirts

Ten of college football's top redshirt freshmen will be playing in the Southeastern Conference this fall but none of them will be playing for Tennessee. So says Richard Cirminiello of collegefootballnews.com.

Cirminiello lists four SEC players on his Redshirt Freshman All-America first team and six more on his second team. No Vols made either squad. Part of the reason, of course, is that many of the guys who would've been potential impact redshirt freshmen for UT this fall (QB Erik Ainge, QB Brent Schaeffer, DB Jonathan Hefney, FB David Holbert, TE Chris Brown) are now sophomores – by virtue of having played as true freshmen last fall.

Regardless, Tennessee will be facing all 10 of the SEC players Cirminiello tabbed among the top redshirt frosh in America. Four of them play for the Florida Gators. The 10 SEC players are as follows:


Offensive line: Jim Tartt, Florida: He's projected to start at right guard.

Offensive line: Antoine Caldwell, Alabama: He's a possible starter at left guard.

Defensive line: Derrick Harvey, Florida: He's added 30 pounds and could start at end, since Gator ends combined for just five sacks in 2004.

Defensive back: Jamarca Sanford, Ole Miss: Blessed with 4.43 speed, he looms as the likely starter at strong safety.


Running back: Markus Manson, Florida: He's the Gators' fastest back but may have to wait behind DeShawn Wynn.

Tight end: Brad Allen, Vanderbilt: A pre-med student, he picked the ‘Dores over Miami, Michigan and Ohio State coming out of high school.

Offensive line: Herman Johnson, LSU: This 6-7, 370-pounder is listed No. 2 at right tackle.

Linebacker: Merrill Johnson, Auburn: He's running No. 2 at weakside ‘backer.

Linebacker: Donnell Ellerbe, Georgia: He's added 20 pounds but still has the quickness to play safety (a la Thomas Davis).

Defensive back: Dawayne Grace, Florida: He's ticketed to back up Dee Webb this fall.

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