Report: Vols Finally Land Alabama Grad Transfer Brandon Kennedy

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    (Photo via Marvin Gentry/USA TODAY Sports)

    After a lengthy battle with Alabama, offensive lineman Brandon Kennedy is finally transferring out of the Tide’s football program and to another SEC school. And that school is one of Alabama’s biggest rivals.

    According to a report from Rivals, redshirt sophomore offensive lineman Brandon Kennedy will officially be a Vol for the 2018 season and is expected to be on campus for summer classes in July. Kennedy reportedly also chose a grad school program that isn’t offered at Alabama, and that helped his case to make the move within the conference before the SEC amended its grad transfer rule after voting on it earlier this month.

    Kennedy will have two years of eligibility remaining instead of the typical one year for most grad transfers. He redshirted as a freshman, played as a redshirt freshman, and then he sustained a season-ending injury early in the 2017 season as a redshirt sophomore and obtained a medical redshirt for the season.

    In those three years, Kennedy finished his undergraduate degree at Alabama. He’ll have two years to complete a grad degree at Tennessee, and he can play football both of those years.

    The 6-foot-3, 305-pound offensive lineman never started a game for Alabama in his three years there. He appeared in three games last season against Fresno State, Vanderbilt, and Ole Miss but served primarily as the Tide’s backup center. Then he suffered a season-ending foot injury early in the year and earned a medical redshirt after the season. He appeared in seven games in 2016 as a redshirt freshman but never started.

    Coming out of high school, Kennedy was a four-star guard according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. Those rankings had him as the No. 296 overall player and No. 19 guard in the 2015 class. Tennessee had offered him, as did Clemson and Auburn.

    Kennedy should come in and compete immediately to start as either a guard or center for the Vols this fall. He’ll be competing against Ryan Johnson at center and players like Chance Hall, Drew Richmond, and Ollie Lane at guard.

    Tennessee has now added four graduate transfers under Jeremy Pruitt. Stanford quarterback Keller Chryst and Michigan State running back Madre London will use their final year of eligibility at Tennessee, and Michigan kicker Ryan Tice will be a walk-on grad transfer with two years of eligibility.

    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.