Wynn At All Costs

In the dog-eat-dog, law-of-the-jungle, survival-of-the-strongest, kill-or-be-killed world that is Southeastern Conference football, the difference between victory and defeat is a razor's edge and, consequently, contests that are captured in the fall are frequently decided the winter before when recruiting rules the gridiron landscape.

That summation underscores the significance of a unique recruiting war being waged between SEC East stalwarts Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee, along with SEC West power Auburn.

The object of their aspirations is JUCO defensive end Jarius Wynn who, at 6-foot-4, 270-pounds, with 4.87 speed and excellent strength, has the makings of a strong side end. He can perform 25 uninterrupted reps of 225 pounds in the bench press, and has a 32-inch vertical leap. He can shut down the run and collapse the pocket or provide backside pursuit. Wynn was recently selected first team to the 47th Annual JC Grid-Wire All-American squad.

In short: the four-star Georgia Military Academy prospect, could be an instant hit for one of the five SEC teams that comprise his list of finalists. Wynn, who played for Lincoln County High School in Lincolnton, Ga., had offers from across the country but wanted to remain close to home, which happens to be in the heart of SEC East country.

"LSU, South Carolina, Georgia, Oklahoma State, Mississippi State, Auburn, Miami, Florida State, North Carolina and Alabama have all sent me stuff," Wynn said. "I'm open to everyone right now, but I want to stay in the south so my family can see me.  Plus I'm used to the heat down here and I want to play in as warm of a place as I can."

In addition to liking the heat, Wynn likes to bring the heat and wants to avoid taking a seat in the heat of competition.

"I want to win and I want to help a team win," Jarius Wynn told Scott Eklund of JCFootball.com. "I need to be on the field because it's too hard standing on the sidelines."

And what else does Wynn want from his school of choice.

"I want a place that can give me a good education and hopefully a place that I can have good advisors and people to make sure I'm getting all the work and classes done I need to," he said.  "Then it has to be about the football program and if it's a winning program that develops players well."

Wynn visited Tennessee for the Alabama game and the Vols remain a solid contender. He can play defensive tackle as well as defensive end, but he prefers playing end, and says that's where UT wants him to play. As a potential prototypical strong side end, Wynn would be an ideal complement to Gerald Williams on the weakside. Both players are mature enough physically to impact the rotation next fall and would provide the Vols with a big boost in the defensive line.

Wherever Wynn signs there's every chance he'll make a difference in the SEC East the next two seasons.


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