Bo intrigues UT staff

He has a running back build (6-1, 211 pounds). He has running back speed. He even has a running back name (Bo). And he has enough running back skills to make college recruiters drool. Seventy-four of them have offered him scholarships to date.

Clearly, Bo Williams is a hot property. This talented young man from Oakland Park, Fla., is one of the South's most prized prospects … and he's taking a long look at the Tennessee Volunteers.

"They're in my top five," he said. "Actually, it's a top 15. I have like 74 official offers right now, so I've got to go by the schools, look at the coaches, the style of offense. I want to find a school that fits me. I'm a running back, and I want a school that runs the ball. That's basically it."

Williams attended UT's recent senior camp and thoroughly enjoyed himself.

"It was great, man … very exciting," he says. "I met new people and liked the coaches. Everybody treated me nice. I got a lot of attention."

Williams participated in just two activities at the Vol camp. He ran the 40-yard dash and long-jumped 10 feet, 4 inches. By then Vol coaches had seen enough.

"They liked my long jump and speed," he recalls. "They didn't want me to do any of the other drills. They already knew what I could do."

Williams spent part of his Tennessee visit with fellow Floridian Vladimir Richard, a redshirt freshman defensive lineman from Sunrise. They bonded immediately.

"He's a great guy," Williams says. "We talked a little bit and it was good."

Williams began the 2005 season as Northeast High School's fullback because of his size. When a Game 3 injury sidelined starting tailback Evan Pittman, however, Bo stepped in to fill the vacancy. The rest, as they say, is history.

"When Pittman got hurt that was my chance to shine," he recalls. "I ran for 112 yards in the Piper game, and that showed people what I could do. I've started ever since."

Despite playing in just six games, Williams finished 2005 with 780 yards on just 83 carries.

"Hurricane Katrina cost us four games," he says. "I was on a good pace. I was getting better every game."

After just six games at the position, Williams already is drawing comparisons to some of the great tailbacks of the past 30 years.

"I get compared to a lot of people – Bo Jackson, Tony Dorsett," he says. "If you look at my size, you say, ‘Oh, that's a guy that can't run,' but I've got speed. I'm shifty and I can do it all."

Williams proved his speed at the Junior Olympics for 17- and 18-year-olds last summer.

"I broke Antwan Smith's 200-meters record," he says. "Antwan had the Junior Olympics record for two years. I broke his record last year and I'm going back to break my record this summer."

When asked to describe himself, Williams answers without hesitation.

"Powerful and speedy. Very powerful," he says. "Any linebacker that's faced me knows that I can run you over or I can run by you. It's simple as that. Speed and power is my game plan. My mindset is to break the first tackle. That's how I play the game, and it's made me a better back."

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