Vols Among Finalists for 2019 Safety

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    (Photo via Ben Ennis/Clayton News-Daily)

    Tennessee still has a few spots available in its 2019 recruiting class after the early signing period. The recruiting dead period is still in effect right now, but in a week and a half, recruits can start visiting campuses again and coaches can begin contacting prospects again.

    The Vols still have three players committed to them in the 2019 cycle who didn’t sign with them in December, and one of those players is four-star safety Anthony Harris. It’s believed Harris didn’t sign because of grade concerns, and UT is trying to make sure they’re prepared in case Harris can’t make it in as part of the 2019 class. They’ve continued to pursue other safety prospects, and one of those recruits just included the Vols as one of his finalists.

    Jamal Hill is a three-star safety out of Morrow, Georgia. He didn’t sign with a school during the early signing period, and now he’s being pursued heavily by several schools. On Tuesday, he released his list of his four finalists heading into the last full month of the 2019 recruiting cycle, and Tennessee made the cut.

    The Vols join USC, Oregon, and Colorado as Hill’s top choices. The Vols are the only team on the east coast to make Hill’s list of finalists despite him playing in the southeast.

    Hill is rated as the No. 520 overall player and No. 44 safety in the 2019 class according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. Along with the teams in his final four, he holds offers from Alabama, Michigan, Arkansas, and others.

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    This past season, Hill was named to the first-team All-Region 4-AAAAAA team for his senior year. That’s the same region that four-star Alabama defensive end signee Justin Eboigbe played in this past year as well.

    The 6-foot-2, 195-pound safety has a wide array of skills he shows off in his highlight film from his senior season. He has really good speed, and he’s reportedly been timed running a 4.45-second 40-yard dash and a 10.96-second 100-meter dash. He uses that speed effectively in covering receivers as a corner and chasing down running backs who got past the first and second level of the defense. Hill is a very good run-stopping safety and shows very good awareness. He takes correct angles when pursuing backs and wraps up well on tackles. There are several times on his film where he makes touchdown-saving tackles. Though he’s better at stopping the run, Hill has some good skills in coverage too. He’s a little more raw there and will need to shore up that area of his game, but that’s far from a huge weakness for him.

    Hill’s senior season stats haven’t been posted, but as a junior he totaled 67 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, three interceptions, and 16 passes defended.

    Tennessee is positioned well with Hill even if they do keep ahold of Harris in their 2019 class, but he won’t be easy to pull in. Hill is planning on taking four official visits in January, and the Vols will be getting one of those visits. He plans on making the trip up to Knoxville on January 25th.



    Nathanael Rutherford
    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.