Vols Offer Intriguing Athletic Defender from Georgia

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    Photo Credit: Mason Burgin/RTI

    Tennessee has been very active on the recruiting trail lately, throwing their name in the hat with a lot of big time prospects and picking up commitments in the 2019 class. However, it’s not just the big time prospects the Vols are after; Jeremy Pruitt is a great evaluator and prides himself on his ability to find talented football players where others aren’t looking. This confidence is evident in his comfort level to offer lesser known prospects, and he may have found another diamond in the rough this week.

    Roman Harrison, a defensive end/linebacker from Bainbridge, Georgia, received a scholarship offer from the Vols on Tuesday.

    Harrison is part of the 2019 recruiting cycle, but he is currently unrated by 247Sports. Tennessee became just the third FBS program to offer him, joining Georgia Southern and Georgia Tech.

    Tracy Rocker is currently the lead recruiter for Harrison, and Rocker has deep roots in Georgia which likely led him to the intriguing defender. The two have now built a strong relationship, one that will likely continue to grow following the scholarship offer.

    The weak-side defensive end may not be a household name, but he has put up some solid numbers. As a junior at Bainbridge High School, Harrison collected 50 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery according to MaxPreps.

    The biggest concern right now for Harrison is his size. At just 6-foot-2, 241 pounds, he would be on the small side for a defensive lineman, but he would fit in well as a linebacker. He is toned though, and has similar numbers in the weight room as some of the better offensive lineman in the 2019 class. He is a freak athlete as well. At Tennessee’s football camp earlier this year, he recorded a 39 inch vertical.

    A look at his film shows just how good of a football player he can be. He has the perfect combination of power and finesse, and he uses it wonderfully to defeat blockers. He changes direction swiftly and is a sure tackler. He has a wide variety of pass rushing moves, and he does a good job of switching them up to keep the opposition off guard. He is physically very gifted, but also very technically sound.

    It is very clear that he is playing out of position in high school. In college he projects as a hybrid, edge type defender. If used properly, he has the potential to become a breakout star. Tennessee may be one of the first schools to realize this, but many others are going to catch on soon. His recruitment is getting ready to blow up.

    The Vols may have an advantage getting in early, but there is still a long road ahead in the recruitment of Roman Harrison. Tennessee’s coaches may have unearthed another potential recruiting star.