Nation's top 2019 prospect claims Butch Jones never reached out to him while coaching Tennessee
Tennessee was hoping to impress the No. 1 recruit in 2019 class this past weekend when it was revealed that he would visit campus for the game against Mizzou. Instead, five-star DE Nolan Smith saw the Volunteers lose 50-17 to the Tigers.
After the game, Smith gave his impression of the visit and relayed the message he was given by Tennessee. He revealed former coach Butch Jones never talked to him while he was leading the Tennessee program, according to Jesse Simonton of Volquest, the Rivals’ Tennessee affiliate. Smith is apparently a fan of the new defensive coordinator on Rocky Top, Kevin Sherrer.
Only Smith knows whether it was enough to change his mind and sway him away from Georgia, where he has been committed since January 2017. Sherrer’s presence on the Volunteer’s staff adds an interesting wrinkle because he was on the Georgia staff when Smith committed there.
The early signing period is roughly a month away, and Smith is clearly weighing his options carefully. Although he makes his home in Georgia, he’s shown that he isn’t scared to travel out of state by playing his high school football at IMG Academy in Florida.
He currently ranks as the No. 1 player in the country and the state of Georgia, according to 247Sports.
What was Tennessee’s message to 5-star UGA commit @SmithNoland2 this weekend?
“Give us a chance. Just look at us. I never been to Tennessee. Coach Butch Jones never called me. Never talked to me at all. I don’t know why. But I talked to coach Sherrer, got up here and had fun.”
— Jesse Simonton (@JesseReSimonton) November 18, 2018