SEC Football News on Saturday Down South

Tennessee’s loss of Lambert hurts, but there’s tons of talent remaining

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Yes, Tennessee’s hurting a little bit this week.

A little bit … but not as much as in recent years when it battled midrange ACC schools for talent and sometimes lost. Those days are over.

Yes, Ohio State passed Tennessee in the national rankings for the No. 2 spot when it swayed talented five-star linebacker Raekwon McMillan to freeze in Ohio instead of stay in the south where he’s from. And yes, Tennessee lost four-star DaVante Lambert on JUCO national signing day, to SEC rival Auburn no less.

Yet the Vols still have 16 four-star prospects on board–the biggest group of four-star prospects in the nation, along with the biggest overall class in the nation. Some FBS signing classes don’t even have 16 players on board yet, not to mention four-star recruits. There’s a ton of talent in this group, and things are about to rebound–if you trust the word of the kids committed to Tennessee. In fact, the Vols signed three good junior college prospects–Lavon Pearson, Owen Williams and huge OL Dontavius Blair--on Wednesday, so they’re locked in to be in Rocky Top next fall.

JUCO linebacker Chris Weatherd is up next to sign–in February. He can’t wait to get to Knoxville.

“We’ve got a lot of good recruits coming in, and I think coach (Butch) Jones changed the vibe around there,” Weatherd told Saturday Dowh South. “It’ll be substantial when everybody gets there and gets rolling.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: All rankings referred to by Saturday Down South are based on the composite ranking, which averages all services.

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