Vols Among Contenders for 4-Star Offensive Lineman

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    (Photo via Brian Dohn/247Sports)

    Tennessee has a need for offensive linemen in their 2021 class. As it stands right now, the Vols only have one offensive lineman committed to them in this cycle. But UT’s coaches continue to target a number of linemen, and one of those recruits just included the Vols in his list of top teams.

    Geno VanDeMark is a four-star offensive lineman who plays for St. Joseph Regional in Montvale, New Jersey. Tennessee offered him back in late January, and now the Vols are one of VanDeMark’s top contenders moving forward.

    The 6-foot-4, 313-pound lineman tweeted out a graphic featuring his top six schools on Tuesday, and Tennessee made the cut along with Nebraska, Rutgers, Michigan State, Ole Miss, and Arizona State.

    According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, VanDeMark is one of the top prospects in the state of New Jersey. He’s rated as the No. 316 overall recruit, No. 18 offensive guard, and No. 4 prospect in New Jersey in the 2021 class. He’s the top-rated offensive lineman in New Jersey per those rankings.

    Since VanDeMark’s junior season ended, he’s racked up a ton of offers. A dozen schools have extended offers to VanDeMark in that time, including five of his top six teams (Rutgers offered in February of 2019).

    VanDeMark participated in a regional camp for Nike’s The Opening back in April of 2019, and there he recorded a shuttle time of 5.15 seconds and a 20-inch vertical.

    Watching VanDeMark’s film, I’m very impressed by his hand placement, aggressiveness, and footwork. He plays with a nasty streak. VanDemark isn’t a dirty player; he just plays mean, which is what you like to see in an offensive lineman. He has very good strength, and he’s great at absorbing contact as a pass blocker and redirecting pass rushers where he wants to go. As a run blocker, his aggressiveness really comes out, and he’ll keep blocking until that whistle has stopped blowing. He has the ability to play at either guard or tackle and has the frame to beef up or slim down and be just as effective as he is right now.

    Tennessee’s only offensive line commit in the 2021 class currently is three-star North Carolina offensive tackle Colby Smith. The Vols are still pursuing a number of offensive linemen, however.

    New Jersey is a state the Vols haven’t had a ton of success in over the years, but UT is targeting a handful of recruits from the state this cycle. Along with VanDeMark, Tennessee is also a player for the No. 1 player in the state, defensive tackle Tywone Malone. The Vols have offered close to a dozen prospects in Jersey this cycle.