Breyon Gaddy, one of the most physically imposing recruits in the 2017 class, announced Tuesday he's going to play college football at Tennessee.
Jesse Simonton of SEC Country noted the defensive tackle's choice of the Volunteers. The coveted recruit posted a message alongside his twin brother, fellow Vols commit Brandon Gaddy, confirming the decision:
Gaddy is a 4-star prospect who's rated No. 274 overall in the 2017 class, per 247Sports' composite rankings. He also checks in as the No. 15 defensive tackle and the 12th-best player coming out of the state of Virginia.
Although those are solid rankings, he's got the potential to make a much larger impact if he can translate his raw tools into on-field production during his time in college.
The Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School standout brings a rare combination of size (6'5", 335 lbs), strength and athleticism to the table. It's allowed him to overpower smaller, often overmatched opponents, but now begins the process of working on his technique.
Along with attracting interest for his football potential, he's also played basketball. Bishop Sullivan teammate and 2018 linebacker recruit Teradja Mitchell showcased the big man's skills:
His future figures to come on the gridiron, though. He realized something special was going on when Alabama came calling during his junior year, per Larry Rubama of the Virginian-Pilot.
"For me to be a junior and to receive an offer from them is really big," Gaddy said. "It makes me want to work harder."
The biggest question now that he's made his school choice is how long it will take for him to make an impact. As mentioned, the talent is there for him to become a high-end defensive tackle, but the transition and development stage is going to take a while.
Picking Tennessee makes plenty of sense. There's no better way for a player to gauge his development than by playing in the SEC against elite competition on a weekly basis during conference play. It's a perfect measuring stick for a recruit with upside but who needs a lot of work.
Gaddy probably won't be ready for a full-time role at the outset. He may find himself in a situation where he can carve out a role for himself as part of the defensive line rotation by the latter stage of his first season, though.
That said, this signing is more about the extended future. The Vols will hope he's able to make the necessary strides and become a game-changing interior lineman by the time he's an upperclassman.