Best of Fulmer era - CBs

No position in college football is more demanding or stressful than cornerback. You have to be fast enough to cover receivers with world-class speed and tough enough to bring down 250-pound fullbacks.

Worse, one little mistake by a cornerback probably means six points for the opposing team. That's especially true at Tennessee, where the corners are put "on an island" in man-to-man coverage the vast majority of the time.

In spite of the daunting demands placed on cornerbacks in the Vol defensive scheme, Tennessee has been blessed with some first-rate ones over the past 15 years. That said, here's my ranking of the top cornerbacks of the Phillip Fulmer era (1992-present):

1. Terry Fair (1994-97): A three-year starter, he was an All-SEC pick as a kick returner in '96, then won all-conference honors as a corner in '97. Fair recorded 163 career tackles, 11 interceptions and 19 pass breakups. A first-round draft pick, he went on to spend eight years in the NFL.

2. Dwayne Goodrich (1997-99): Another three-year starter, Goodrich was known as "The Human Magnet" for the way he seemed to attract the football. He registered 137 career stops, 12 interceptions (two of which he returned for touchdowns), six fumble recoveries and 22 pass breakups. A team captain and All-SEC pick as a senior, he was a Round 2 draft pick who spent three years in the NFL.

3. DeRon Jenkins (1992-95): A four-year starter, Jenkins managed the remarkable feat of recording almost as many interceptions (12) as he did pass breakups (14). He also contributed 145 career tackles en route to earning All-SEC honors in '95. A Round 2 draft pick, he went on to play seven years in the NFL.

4. Andre Lott (1999-2001): Sandwiching two years at corner around a year at safety in 2000, Lott registered 152 tackles and 22 pass breakups but just two interceptions as a Vol. Tabbed a captain and All-SEC selection as a senior, the Memphis product was a Round 5 draft pick who wound up playing five years in the NFL.

5. Jabari Greer (2001, 2003): Like Lott, Greer recorded a lot of tackles (147) and a lot of pass breakups (32) but few interceptions (2). Still, the Jackson native was an excellent cover corner who beat the odds by winning an NFL job as a free agent and recently completing his fourth year in The League.

6. Inky Johnson (2005-06): He appeared on his way to a fine career when severe nerve damage to his shoulder ended his playing days just two games into his junior year. His career stats show 41 tackles, 1 interception and 10 pass breakups.

7. Jonathan Wade (2005-06): His development was greatly hampered by the fact he spent a year at wide receiver and spent his springs running track. Still, he was very productive in his two years as a starter, finishing his career with 110 tackles, 6 interceptions and 19 pass breakups. A Round 3 draft pick in 2007, he just competed his rookie year in the NFL.

8. Ronald Davis (1993): Another converted receiver, the Bartlett native made the most of his two years on defense, racking up 65 career tackles, 3 interceptions and 9 pass breakups. He was so impressive as a senior that the Atlanta Falcons picked him in Round 2 of the '04 NFL Draft. He lasted just one year in the pros, however.

9. Willie Miles (2000, 2002): This talented Texan posted decent numbers (81 tackles, 3 interceptions, 13 pass breakups) but always will be remembered as the Vol who was defending on Jabar Gafney's phantom "catch" at the end of the 2000 UT-Florida game.

10. Teddy Gaines (2000): This Kingsport product started just one year but played enough over his four-year career to register 81 tackles, 1 interception and 18 pass breakups. He was a Round 7 draft pick but did not stick in the NFL.

11. Steve Johnson (1998): He picked a great year to win a starting job, filling a cornerback spot for the '98 national championship team. Johnson finished his career with 98 tackles, 2 picks and 16 pass breakups. A Round 6 draft selection, he spent two years in the NFL.

12. Roshaun Fellows (2004): A Freshman All-American in '04, Fellows virtually disappeared after his promising start. He lost his first-team job to Jonathan Wade in 2005, sat out '06 following surgery on a pectoral muscle, then was dismissed from the team prior to the '07 season. His career numbers show 60 tackles, 3 interceptions and 14 pass breakups.

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