Former 4-star LB Henry To'o To'o Transfers to Alabama from Tennessee

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVMay 8, 2021

KNOXVILLE, TN - DECEMBER 5: Henry To'o To'o  #11 of the Tennessee Volunteers reacts after a play against the Florida Gators at Neyland Stadium on December 5, 2020 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by Andrew Ferguson/Collegiate Images/Getty Images)
Andrew Ferguson/Collegiate Images/Getty Images

Former Tennessee linebacker Henry To'o To'o announced he's transferring to Alabama on Saturday:

11 @HenryTootoo1

God THANK YOU❤️ pic.twitter.com/r9DCEWhkjK

To'o To'o was the No. 3 outside linebacker and No. 44 overall player in 247Sports' composite rankings of the 2019 recruiting class. The Concord, California, native made 22 appearances for the Volunteers, making 140 total tackles and intercepting one pass.

The Division I Council approved the rule allowing players to transfer once without having to sit out, thus accelerating the rate at which players are changing schools.

On Monday, the Crimson Tide received a commitment from former Ohio State wide receiver Jameson Williams, who had entered the transfer portal.

The Athletic's Max Olson and Bruce Feldman ranked To'o To'o as the third-best player in the portal for this year: "He checks all the boxes in terms of work ethic, leadership, football IQ, physical play and sideline-to-sideline playmaking ability."

A telling indicator as to the state of Tennessee's program is that the Vols had six outgoing players among Olson and Feldman's 50 best. First-year Vols head coach Josh Heupel has a lot of work ahead to undo the damage done by his predecessor, Jeremy Pruitt.

For Alabama, it's a case of the rich getting richer. The Tide lost Dylan Moses, who signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars as an undrafted free agent. In his place comes a starting-caliber linebacker with two years of SEC experience.

Aaron Torres @Aaron_Torres

Its funny because Nick Saban predicted this at the Alabama spring game. He said (and im paraphrasing) "I don't like the one time transfer rule. But the funny thing is, it's only going to allow us to get better." <br><br>Not great for everyone else 🐘🐘🐘

Aaron Suttles @AaronSuttles

Alabama’s defense just got better. Henry To’oto’o is really, really good.

Moses wasn't the only notable departure from the Alabama defense, with Patrick Surtain II and Christian Barmore moving on to the next level as well. But head coach Nick Saban routinely sees multiple defensive stars leave every season and continues to reload.

Alabama finished sixth in ESPN's SP+ defensive rating in 2020 as the unit allowed 352.2 yards and 19.4 points per game. The defense should be just as good as the Crimson Tide attempt to retain their national championship.