Tennessee Volunteers Football: 4 Defensive Line Recruits That the Vols Need

Daniel Hudson@daniel3417Correspondent IIIAugust 8, 2011

Tennessee Volunteers Football: 4 Defensive Line Recruits That the Vols Need

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    The Tennessee Volunteers' are quickly closing the holes in their on-field roster, but the defensive line is still lagging behind.

    It seems like eons ago when men like John Henderson and Albert Haynesworth anchored the Big Orange defensive line. There have solid linemen come through like Justin Harrell and Dan Williams, but there hasn't been a consistent stream in years.

    If Derek Dooley and the rest of the Vols' coaching staff can begin bringing in defensive linemen the way they are currently bringing in wide receivers and defensive backs, Tennessee could once again become a perennial contender for the SEC and National Championship.

Christian Brown

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    Rivals' Ranking: 3 stars

    Scout's Ranking: 3 stars

    Top Interests: None indicated

    Recent News and Quotes: I'm going to take a trip up north, but I haven't figured out all of the schools I'm going to visit. I'll probably decide that this week or sometime soon. I've got to talk to my coach and he'll figure it out with me. I'll probably go out to Illinois, Kentucky, NC State, Tennessee... all of them. Purdue, too."

    As you can tell from Brown's own words, he still has a lot of visiting and thinking to do. The same goes the for Derek Dooley and the Tennessee Volunteers' recruiters since they haven't even officially offered him yet.

    Brown is a 6'2", 280 pound defensive tackle from Fort Myers, Florida. He has interest in offers from many of the usual suspects such as Florida, Florida State and Miami, but also in some different schools like Indiana, Middle Tennessee State and Ball State.


    Verdict: Stay tuned. This one might be a while. 

Darius Hamilton

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    Rivals' Ranking: 5 stars

    Scout's Ranking: 5 stars

    Top Interests: Florida, Tennessee and Rutgers

    Recent News and Quotes: "I would say there is a couple schools that are recruiting me the hardest, that's how I rank things, not by favorites, but who is recruiting me the most. Those schools would probably be Rutgers, Florida, Tennessee and North Carolina."

    That's the kind of quote I like to see! He ranks the schools of interest based on their dedication to him and his goals. For fans of the Tennessee Volunteers, it has to be good to see that Hamilton considers the Vols' recruitment of him to be impressive.

    He is the top-ranked strongside defensive end in the country, meaning the 6'4", 245 pound Hamilton can go to any college he wants. The key will be for him to find a coaching staff he trusts, a shot at solid playing time and a great playing atmosphere.

    I say that's in Knoxville!


    Verdict: Florida. Every piece of news seems to slowly point back to Gainesville. 

Ryan Watson

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    Rivals' Ranking: 4 stars

    Scout's Ranking: 4 stars

    Top Interests: Michigan, Michigan State, Tennessee and Georgia Tech

    Recent News and Quotes: "With Tennessee, that's a school my dad really likes and wants me to take a close look at. They're a big-time school, so I'll look into them."

    "Ryan [Watson] was there, big kid who moves well, not sure if he's a big end or can move to tackle. He'll have to get more physical to play tackle. Tennessee is his leader, he said." - Mike Farrell of Rivals

    The parents of recruits have a great deal of influence on their decision, which I think is a great thing. At 18 and 19 years old, future student athletes need the guidance of the parents that have watched them grow both on and off the field.

    The fact that Watson's father is comfortable with Tennessee bodes well for the Volunteers.

    He is a huge defensive end at 6'3", 270 pounds, which means that he could easily be a defensive tackle by the time he's in school. Derek Dooley can easily sell either position to Watson since the Vols need both.

    Verdict: Tennessee. His relationship with his father and the coaching staff is quite strong.

Dalvin Tomlinson

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    Rivals' Ranking: 4 stars

    Scout's Ranking: 4 stars

    Top Interests: Alabama, Georgia Tech and Tennessee

    Recent News and Quotes: "I want to see what colleges I'll take my official visits to, and I'm still focusing on my high school football team, and I'm trying to focus on recruiting, too. I know Alabama is going to be one, and I most likely want to get up to Indiana, and I want to go to Tennessee, too."

    Dalvin Tomlinson is all over the place! Indiana, really? Maybe the recent commitment from the top pro-style quarterback in the country has helped the Hoosiers get an in on the talented defensive tackle from McDonough, Georgia.

    Tomlinson is a great student with a 3.7 GPA and has also received offers from Harvard, Virginia and Georgia Tech. With his smarts and proximity to Georgia Tech, that's certainly a bonus for the Yellow Jackets.

    Once again, Derek Dooley should work hard to sell the small distance from home and the dire need for his defensive talents to bring Tomlinson to the Volunteers.

    Verdict: Georgia Tech. For all the reasons I listed above and the rumor mill.