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Barnes and Staff Visit Multiple Five-Stars, Other Top Targets

Photo credit: Anne Newman/RTI

The live evaluation period in college basketball has officially begun, and Tennessee’s entire coaching staff hit the ground running this past weekend. The AAU circuit is getting started now, and coaches everywhere are traveling around the country to watch top prospects showcase their skills in tournaments everywhere.

Rick Barnes and his coaching staff stopped at various venues this weekend to see some of their top targets in the 2019 and 2020 classes. And according to reports from both 247Sports and, the Vols made their presence known with a multitude of recruits this weekend.

Here are the prospects Tennessee reportedly visited this past weekend during the first April live period:

Jalen Lecque, combo guard

Star Rating: 5-star
Overall: 12
Position: 2
Height: 6-4
Weight: 175 lbs
Location: Arden, NC

The Vols have made Lecque a huge priority in their 2019 class, and they’ve visited him several times during this cycle. He also unofficially visited Tennessee during their January 6th match-up with with Kentucky, a game the Vols won in comeback fashion against a sold out Thompson-Boling Arena. Lecque has discussed the possibility of reclassifying into the 2018 class, but he hasn’t made that decision as of yet.

Isaiah Stewart, center

Star Rating: 5-star
Overall: 14
Position: 4
Height: 6-8
Weight: 243 lbs
Location: Rochester, NY

Tennessee was supposed to go visit Stewart last week, but weather interfered with their initial travel plans. They were reportedly able to see him play this weekend, though. The Vols were his fist Division I offer, but his racked up offers from some of the nation’s top schools since. He just recently picked up an offer from Villanova, and Duke, Georgetown, Michigan State, Syracuse, and others have all extended offers to him.

Josiah James, combo guard

Star Rating: 5-star
Overall: 18
Position: 3
Height: 6-6
Weight: 195 lbs
Location: Charleston, SC

James hosted Tennessee coaches on visit last week, and the Vols have made him a high priority as of late. James has twice unofficially visited Clemson, and Stanford, Auburn, Cincinnati, and South Carolina are teams pursuing him as well.

Marcus Watson, shooting guard

Star Rating: 4-star
Overall: 87
Position: 11
Height: 6-6
Weight: 205 lbs
Location: Buford, GA

Watson is another player the Vols have been pursuing tenaciously as of late. Rick Barnes paid him a visit in early April, and Tennessee has been involved heavily with him over the last few months. Georgia Tech has been recruiting Watson the hardest, and they’re probably the favorite for him right now. He also holds offers from Clemson, Florida, Virginia Tech, Georgia, LSU, and others.

Jaykwon Walton, combo guard

Star Rating: 4-star
Overall: 132
Position: 19
Height: 6-6
Weight: 196 lbs
Location: Montgomery, AL

Though Tennessee has yet to offer Walton, his recruitment has exploded as of late, and the Vols were in Dallas this weekend to see him play. He’s picked up offers from Alabama, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Florida, and Auburn in the past month. He added those to offers he already held from Memphis, Texas A&M, Mississippi State, Xavier, Creighton, and others.

Dekeyvan Tandy, shooting guard

Star Rating: 4-star
Overall: 142
Position: 25
Height: 6-1
Weight: 165 lbs
Location: Hopkinsville, KY

Tandy maintains that Tennessee is one of the schools currently recruiting him the hardest right now. The Vols were just his second Division I offer after Florida, giving him a scholarship offer on February 16th. Tennessee’s coaches visited him last week. He’s picked up offers from Cincinnati, Iowa State, and Kansas State since Tennessee offered him, and Kentucky has expressed interest in him as well. He unofficially visited them in late February, and John Calipari and Joel Justus visited him in early March.

Jaden Springer, shooting guard (2020)

Star Rating: 5-star
Overall: 21
Position: 6
Height: 6-2
Weight: 176 lbs
Location: Charlotte, NC

The Vols may have an in for this highly-rated prospect in the 2020 class. Springer plays for former Vol Bobby Maze’s BMaze Elite AAU team, and Tennessee is already making him a priority in the 2020 cycle. He picked up an offer from the Vols back on September 9th while he was on an unofficial visit, and he unofficially visited Tennessee on January 6th of this year during the Vols’ victory over Kentucky. The rising junior already has offers from UCLA, Auburn, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, Maryland, and NC State among others.

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