UT recruiters off to good start

Quietly – almost without notice – the Tennessee Vols are off to a pretty good start in football recruiting.

Phillip Fulmer and his newly revamped staff already have commitments from four players tabbed by ESPN.com in a feature called "The 150 Watch List." Only one team from the SEC East – Georgia with nine – has more.

Given that most early commitments are in-staters, it should come as no surprise that eight of Georgia's nine cited commitments hail from the Peach State. Conversely, only one of UT's four celebrated commitments is from the Volunteer State.

The four Vol commitments on the ESPN list are Je'Ron Stokes, a 6-1, 178-pound receiver from Philadelphia, Pa., Damien Thigpen, a 5-8, 170-pound athlete from Manassas, Va., Toney Williams, a 6-1, 229-pound running back from Alpharetta, Ga., and Dominique Allen, a 5-11, 235-pound in-state running back from Henry County High in Paris.

With three out-of-state commitments from the ESPN list, the Big Orange equals the total for the rest of the SEC East. Georgia, Florida and Vanderbilt have one out-of-state commitment each off the ESPN list.

The only Georgia commitment recognized by ESPN who isn't from the Peach State is Aaron Murray, a 6-1, 198-pound quarterback from Tampa, Fla.

Florida has three commitments from the ESPN list, two of whom are Sunshine State prospects. The exception is Greg Reid, a 5-9, 165-pound "athlete" from Valdosta, Ga.

South Carolina has just one commitment to date who made the ESPN list but he's a native of the Palmetto State.

Kentucky also has but one commitment mentioned by ESPN, and he's a homegrown prospect, as well.

Like Tennessee, Vanderbilt does most of its recruiting outside the Volunteer State. The Commodores dipped into Rising Fawn, Ga., to secure their only ESPN-cited commitment – Jay Fullam, a 6-1, 190-pound safety.

Here's a recap of the SEC East commitments who grace the ESPN 150 Watch List:

GEORGIA: Chris Burnett (6-3, 275, guard), Washaun Ealey (5-11, 205, running back), Michael Gilliard (6-2, 200 outside linebacker), Abry Jones (6-3, 250 defensive end), Dallas Lee (6-4, 290 guard), Zach Mettenberger (6-5, 208 quarterback), Dexter Moody (6-2, 215 outside linebacker), Aaron Murray (6-1, 198 quarterback, Chase Vasser (6-3, 205 outside linebacker),

FLORIDA: Gary Brown (6-3, 275 defensive tackle), Mike Gillislee (6-0, 190 running back), Greg Reid (5-9, 175 athlete), Nu'Keese Richardson (5-8, 151 receiver).

SOUTH CAROLINA: Chris Payne (5-10, 190 safety).

KENTUCKY: Larry Warford (6-4, 349 guard).

VANDERBILT: Jay Fullam (6-1, 190 safety).

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