The Vols are in need of adding more offensive and defensive linemen to their future rosters. One of their targets in the 2021 cycle, who can play on either side of the ball, included Tennessee among his trimmed-down list of suitors this weekend.
Rayshaun Benny, a four-star lineman who plays for Oak Park High School in Oak Park, Michigan, tweeted out a graphic that displayed his top eight teams, and Tennessee made the cut. The Vols were joined by LSU, Michigan State, Penn State, Michigan, Arkansas, Arizona State, and Kentucky.
— Rayshaun Benny (@rayshaun_benny) July 25, 2020
According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Benny is the No. 189 overall prospect, No. 19 offensive tackle, and sixth-best recruit in the state of Michigan. The 6-foot-5, 275-pound lineman can play both offensive line and defensive line, and it’s believed UT is looking at him as a potential defensive lineman.
The Vols extended an offer to Benny back in February of this year, and the talented lineman holds offers from over three dozen programs.
Benny has a unique connection to Tennessee in that he attends the same high school former Vol starting running back John Kelly did. Kelly signed with the Vols as a three-star as part of UT’s 2015 class. After sitting behind Jalen Hurd and Alvin Kamara, Kelly took over as starting running back in 2017 and had a strong season, finishing his UT career with 1,573 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns to go along with 350 receiving yards. Kelly was drafted in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams.
As for Benny, he’s a long, athletic lineman who has the versatility to play as a tackle or guard along the offensive line. He has long arms and a great reach, and he’s especially good in run blocking. Benny has a lot of energy and explosiveness off the snap.
Tennessee’s 2021 class currently ranks fourth in the country and No. 2 in the SEC per 247Sports. Of the Vols’ 23 current commits, only one is a projected offensive lineman (Colby Smith), while five project as probable defensive linemen (Dylan Brooks, KaTron Evans, Trinity Bell, Darrell Jackson, Isaac Washington).