Could Vols Land Recent Ohio State Decommit?

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    (Photo via USA Today Sports)

    If you missed the news on Friday night, the recruitment of one of the state’s top players just got more interesting.

    Four-star linebacker Kane Patterson decommitted from Ohio State on Friday, and it was announced in the middle of his high school’s game on Friday as CPA took on Ensworth. Patterson picked the Buckeyes over offers from Alabama, Tennessee, and many others when he committed to them on July 9th.

    It’s no secret that the Vols like Patterson a lot, and he made it a point to show Tennessee plenty of love when his recruitment was open. Now that he’s no longer committed to Ohio State, are the Vols back in play?

    According to one Ohio State analyst, his gut says Tennessee is where Patterson ends up.

    Jeremy Birmingham covers Ohio State recruiting for Lettermen Row, and he tweeted out shortly after Patterson’s decommitment that he believes the Vols will ultimately be Patterson’s choice when it’s all said and done.

    Recently, Clemson extended an offer to Patterson earlier this month, and many believe the Tigers are now one of the frontrunners for his services. Patterson also holds offers from Auburn, Oklahoma, LSU, Wisconsin, Stanford, and many more.

    Birmingham believes, as many others do, that Patterson’s decommitment is directly linked to the controversy surrounding Ohio State, Urban Meyer, and former receivers coach Zach Smith. Meyer was recently suspended for the Buckeye’s first three games of the 2018 season after a lengthy investigation into whether or not he knew or covered up information pertaining to Zach Smith’s abuse of his wife, Courtney.

    As a junior last season, Patterson totaled 64 tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, an interception, a pass defended, and he blocked a field goal according to MaxPreps. On offense, he ran the ball 110 times for 1,003 yards and 23 touchdowns. So far this season, Patterson has eight tackles, two tackles for loss, and a fumble recovery in two games.

    The Vols already have 20 players committed in their 2019 recruiting class, and spots are at a premium right now. But the staff likes what they’ve seen from Patterson, and he’ll definitely be someone they continue to pursue.