Tennessee needs some immediate help at offensive line. That’s why Jeremy Pruitt and his staff were pursuing several junior college lineman for the 2018 recruiting class, and they were able to land one in borderline three-star/four-star tackle Jahmir Johnson.
But the Vols still need more help and depth. And they’re turning to the graduate transfer route to try and find it.
New Tennessee offensive line coach Will Friend visited grad transfer offensive tackle Calvin Anderson out of Rice earlier this week. And according to Anderson’s Twitter, Friend wasn’t the only Power Five school to visit him. Anderson also got visits from Notre Dame and Louisville.
Spoke some excellent football with coach Alexander from Notre Dame, coach Friend from Tennessee and coach Klenakis from Louisville. The opportunity to play football at a high level is coming in all shapes, sizes, and school colors! #NotreDame #Tennessee #Louisville pic.twitter.com/Zxh93JAUdN
— Calvin Anderson (@THE_CONDA25) January 19, 2018
Anderson has already received his release from Rice and will transfer for his final year of eligibility once he graduates in May. The senior started all 12 games for Rice this past season, and he closed out his Rice career making 36 consecutive starts for the Owls. He was twice voted an honorable mention All-Conference USA lineman, earning those honors in 2016 and 2017.
The 6-foot-5, 300 pound lineman would provide an immediate starting option at tackle for the Vols. True freshman All-American Trey Smith finished out last season as the starter at left tackle for the final three games of the season, but both of Tennessee’s tackle positions were more or less revolving doors last year because of various injuries and other attrition.
Tennessee currently only has two four-year scholarship offensive linemen on the roster, and that’s Chance Hall and Drew Richmond. And Hall missed all of last season with an injury.
The Vols need just about all the help they can get on the offensive line heading into the 2018 season. Anderson would just be a one season plug, but he would help bolster Tennessee’s depth for the future by not having to play a younger player instead, and he would provide more experience than any other lineman on the Vols’ roster right now.