Tennessee football landed a huge commitment Wednesday morning, gaining a pledge from 4-star ATH Emmanuel Okoye, who has been at the NFL Academy in England. He was originally born in Nigeria.

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Even better news for Vols fans: Okoye also plans to reclassify to 2023 and will be eligible for Tennessee this season. The Vols beat out Texas Tech and USC for his talents, though plenty of Power 5 programs offered him.

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Sports betting in Tennessee officially launched on November 1, 2020, and many of the largest sportsbooks are live and operating in the volunteer state. Tennessee is only one of a handful of SEC football states with legalized sports betting.

Okoye was not a football player until a few years ago. Instead, he thrived at soccer and basketball before being discovered by Osi Umenyiora’s “The Uprise” program where he was asked to attend a talent camp, according to ESPN’s Chris Low. He raised some eyebrows and enrolled at the NFL Academy soon after receiving an invite.

And at 6-5, 230 pounds, it isn’t hard to see why Tennessee thinks he will have potential, possibly as a tight end or defensive end.

Tennessee has done solid work on the recruiting trail, for both 2023 and 2024. However Okoye fits into Josh Heupel’s plan, this is a great pickup for the Vols.