Mayo, a rugged 6-2, 230-pounder with the speed and instincts to be an outstanding pro, saw his first three years at UT hampered by an assortment of injuries. He showed what he can do when fully healthy last fall, however, leading the Southeastern Conference with 140 tackles. If he performs well at the upcoming Combine workouts, he could work his way into Round 1 of this April's NFL Draft.
If Lofton AND Mayo prove to be first-round picks, it will be only the seventh time in history the Big Orange has accomplished this feat.
The first time it happened was 1968, and two centers were involved. Bob Johnson was taken by the Cincinnati Bengals with pick No. 2 in the NFL Draft, then 7-footer Tom Boerwinkle was pick No. 4 by the Chicago Bulls in the NBA Draft.
The next time was 1977. Tailback Stanley Morgan – projected to play wide receiver – was taken by the New England Patriots with pick No. 25. Shortly thereafter, Bernard King (pick 7, New Jersey Nets) and Ernie Grunfeld (pick 11, Milwaukee Bucks) were first-round selections in the NBA Draft.
The third time was 1980. Defensive back Roland James was pick 14 of the New England Patriots, then forward Reggie Johnson was pick 15 of the San Antonio Spurs.
After a 10-year hiatus, Tennessee produced first-rounders in both sports again in 1993. Defensive end Todd Kelly was tabbed by the San Francisco 49ers with pick 27, then guard Allan Houston was pick 11 by the Detroit Pistons.
Nine years passed before the Vols showed up in Round 1 of each draft again. That was 2002, when defensive tackle John Henderson (pick 9 by the Jacksonville Jaguars), wide receiver Donte Stallworth (pick 13 by the New Orleans Saints) and defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth (pick 15 by the Tennessee Titans) were first-round NFL selections. A couple of months later, forward Marcus Haislip was taken by the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks with pick 13.