Vols are Finalists for Elite Four-Star Power Forward

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    (Photo via The State)

    Tennessee is in on some truly elite talent in the 2020 recruiting cycle in men’s basketball. The Vols are legitimate contenders for five-star guard Jaden Springer, are the perceived favorites for borderline five-star guard and No. 1 in-state player Keon Johnson, and have a commitment from high four-star small forward Corey Walker. On Friday evening, another highly-rated player who is high up their board released his list of finalists, and UT made the cut.

    PJ Hall is a four-star power forward who plays for Dorman High School in Roebuck, South Carolina. He’s been high on Tennessee’s recruiting list for a long time, and on Friday he released his list of five finalists. The Vols were included along with Florida, Clemson, Virginia Tech, and Georgia Tech.

    The 6-foot-9, 220-pound forward is rated as the No. 65 overall player, No. 9 power forward, and No. 1 player in the state of South Carolina in the 2020 class according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

    Hall has a sister who attends Florida, but he’s developed a strong relationship with Tennessee and head coach Rick Barnes throughout his recruitment. In an interview with Jed Blackwell of GoUpstate.com, he had nothing but positive things to say about Barnes and the culture at UT.

    “It’s hard to find something not to like about Coach Barnes,” Hall told Blackwell. “He loves his guys, and they love him back. And I like their style of play and the way they get up and down the floor.”

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    Due to a scheduling error, Hall wasn’t able to make an official visit to Tennessee earlier this year, but he plans on making a trip to Knoxville in the near future. He’s taken official visits to Clemson and Florida so far.

    Hall is the type of athletic, versatile power forward that can have major success in Tennessee’s system. He moves very well for his size, and he has a very high basketball IQ. Hall is able to stretch the floor and hit threes as well, and he has plenty of confidence in his shot from distance. That doesn’t mean he’s a finesse forward, though; Hall is gritty and fights inside both on offense and defense. He can nail fadeaway jumpers and drive into the paint and muscle his way forward for tough baskets. He’s also a solid rim protector and doesn’t budge easily in the paint.

    During the NBPA Top 100 Camp back in June, Hall also had this incredible highlight outlet pass:

    In the Adidas Gauntlet series this year, Hall played in 14 total games with Upward Stars, and he was a standout player. According to ExposureSportsNews.com, Hall averaged 14.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks a game in 18.6 minutes a contest. He shot 59.1 percent overall and was 24-of-43 from three (55.8 percent).

    As a junior with Dorman, Hall averaged 14.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 2.1 blocks per game while shooting 56 percent from the floor. He was voted an All-Region and All-State player and helped the Cavaliers win their third-straight 5A state title.

    The Vols are one of five finalists for five-star guard Jaden Springer and one of three finalists for top-30 overall guard and No. 1 in-state prospect Keon Johnson in the 2020 class along with being named finalists for Hall. Tennessee has one commit in their 2020 class so far, and that’s from four-star small forward Corey Walker.



    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.