Top Uncommitted In-State Prospect Picks Vols

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    (Photo via Ryan Callahan/247Sports)

    After months and months of speculation, the top uncommitted prospect in the state of Tennessee is officially a Vol.

    Four-star defensive end Tyler Baron announced on Wednesday that he will be playing for the University of Tennessee in college. Baron chose the Vols over Ohio State, Oklahoma, Kentucky, and others.

    Per the 247Sports Composite rankings, Baron is the No. 112 overall prospect, No. 5 strong-side defensive end, and No. 5 recruit in the state of Tennessee in the 2020 class. Baron played for Ensworth in Nashville before transferring to Knoxville Catholic for his senior season.

    Heading into Wednesday, Baron was the highest-rated uncommitted prospect in the state of Tennessee. That changed today, though.

    Baron saw a jump in his rankings after a strong performance at the Murfreesboro, TN regional camp for Nike’s The Opening. Baron was already a four-star, but he moved even closer to the top-100 overall prospects after the camp and is right outside top-100 status.

    The 6-foot-5, 252-pound defensive end was named MVP of the event and tested exceptionally well. He was timed running a 4.79-second 40-yard dash, a 4.69-second shuttle, and had a 30-inch vertical leap.

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    Watching Baron’s film, his explosiveness off the snap immediately stands out. He’s a very aggressive tackler who already has a few moves to get by blockers. Baron is quick and strong, and that’s a deadly combo for opposing offenses. Baron doesn’t really have the type of bend and wiggle you hear analysts rave about, but he’s a consistent performer who has a variety of ways to get into the backfield. He’s aggressive and has the type of frame to either add more weight to it and be a down lineman or trim down just a little and be a stand up pass rusher.

    As a senior for Knoxville Catholic, Baron totaled 103 tackles, 25 tackles for loss, nine sacks, and four forced fumbles.

    Baron is the 11th player from inside Tennessee’s own state borders to commit to the Vols in the 2020 class. He’s the fourth player to join UT’s 2020 class who wasn’t already committed to them before the start of the early signing period on Wednesday.

    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.