Vols Land Signature of Five-Star OT Darnell Wright

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    (Photo via Sholten Singer/The Herald-Dispatch)

    Tennessee had one big fish left to haul in for their 2019 class on National Signing Day. And they brought him aboard.

    Five-star offensive tackle Darnell Wright officially announced on Wednesday that he will be signing with the Vols and will give Tennessee their second signature from a five-star offensive tackle. Wright joins Wanya Morris as the two five-stars in UT’s 2019 signing class.

    According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Wright is the No. 10 overall player and No. 2 offensive tackle in the 2019 class. The 6-foot-6, 320-pound lineman from Huntington, West Virginia held offers from Georgia, Alabama, Clemson, and others.

    West Virginia had made a late push for Wright, and new head coach Neal Brown had pulled out all the stops to try and sway the No. 1 player in the state of West Virginia. But Wright ultimately chose Tennessee on National Signing Day.

    Wright had been considered a Tennessee lean for months. He’s visited UT’s campus multiple times over the last eight months, and Tennessee and West Virginia were the only two schools he took official visits to.

    Now, he’ll officially don the orange and white for this upcoming season.

    Wright, who also plays defensive end for Huntington High School, has all the tools to be a successful offensive linemen at the collegiate level. He’s already very strong and dominates defensive linemen in high school. He’s extremely aggressive while run blocking, and he can move very well in space. He has a quick first step and plays through the whistle. Wright has tenacity and that grit that coaches want in an offensive lineman, and he has the type of frame that’s coveted by college coaches everywhere. He’ll need to play a little lower in college, but any of his shortcomings are teachable and things that he can eventually smooth out once at the next level. He’ll also need to get rid of some weight, but overall it’s easy to see why he’s a five-star. Wright doesn’t have a full tape up of his senior season, just individual game highlights. So here’s a look at his junior year film:

    Tennessee has now signed five offensive linemen in their 2019 class with the addition of Wright. He joins fellow five-star Wanya Morris, four-star guard Jackson Lampley, three-star guard Melvin McBride, and three-star offensive tackle Chris Akporoghene as UT’s offensive linemen signees.

    Wright is the highest-rated player the Vols have signed according to the 247Sports Composite rankings since Kahlil McKenzie in the 2015 class. He’s the Vols’ first top-10 overall prospect since McKenzie (Trey Smith was rated as the No. 14 overall player in the composite rankings because of his lower rating on Rivals).

    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.