Vols show faith in commitment Jeffery

Defensive lineman tore ACL, MCL in September

Arthur Jeffery Jr.

Arthur Jeffery Jr.

Arthur Jeffery Jr. signs with the Vols

Arthur Jeffery Jr.

Arthur Jeffery Jr.

SARASOTA, Fla. - Booker High School’s Arthur Jeffery Jr. never saw the season-ending knee injury that he suffered in a victory over city rival Sarasota on Sept. 5 as a gloom and doom prophecy.

Jeffery’s patience and positive outlook will be rewarded on Feb. 4, 2009, when he plans to sign a national letter of intent with Tennessee. The 6-foot-5, 270-pound defensive lineman confirmed his decision on Thursday and said that he planned to make his official visit Jan. 16.

The story was first reported by sportsota.com.

“He never lost his faith,” Booker coach Fred Gilmore said. “I’m sure that he had his doubts, but he never showed it around us.”

Ranked as the 16th best defensive tackle in the country by Scout.com, Jeffery underwent surgery on Oct. 24 to repair a torn MCL and ACL in his left knee. Tennessee and the University of South Florida were the main contenders for Jeffery’s services, while schools such as Arkansas, Kentucky and Florida Atlantic continued to express serious interest after the injury.

“Tennessee can do a lot for me,” Jeffery said. “All the coaches said that it was a common injury and that I will come back stronger from it. The thing that kept my spirits up was the fact that (Tennessee and USF) were still calling and were still interested.

“With other schools, I didn’t know if they were still interested. Once everybody found out about the injury, there were a lot of people who didn’t want to hear from me.”

Jeffery reported no complications from the surgery and that his rehabilitation is “going great.”

“I’m just anxious to get back on the field,” Jeffery said.

Jeffery burst onto the scene as a freshman, earning a promotion to the varsity and establishing himself as a starter in the midst of the Tornadoes’ run to the 2005 Class 3A state championship game. He earned first team Class 3A All-State honors after recording 74 tackles, 28 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, five blocked kicks and four forced fumbles in 2007 for the District 11 champion Tornadoes.

Gilmore, who publicly stated that the injury wouldn’t hurt Jeffery’s scholarship hopes, lauded Tennessee and USF for doing their “due diligence” during the recruiting process. Despite the injury, Jeffery wasn’t going to fret about the direction of his career.

“I try to stay positive in everything that I do,” Jeffery said. “I don’t like having negative energy around me. I’m one of the those people who look for the best in a bad situation.”

Former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer and his staff made Jeffery a top priority last summer. New coach Lane Kiffin picked up where Fulmer left off.

“It’s the SEC and that’s where all the great games are played,” Jeffery said. “I want to be where the best of the best are.

“They’re looking for someone to come in and play right away. That’s what I’m looking forward to doing. I would love to make an impact on the team.”

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Comments » 143

rockytopatl writes:

It sounds like good news if he rehabs it properly. It is a little disturbing, however, that more big schools did not pursue him.

Do any of you recruiting gurus have the poop on him? How many stars?

Cherokee writes:

Very glad to have this young man coming to UT. I like seeing top notch DL on the Hill. Welcome aboard!

Triton1 writes:

#16 in the nation at his position, sounds good to me.

Louisvol8859 writes:

Here is the rivals info he is higher ranked on scout as just reported by Triton.

http://tennessee.rivals.com/viewprosp...

VolPatrick writes:

Um, alright! Time to put some meat on that line and turn the nasties loose! Way to go coaching staff, and keep up the good work. The momentum is building????

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to rockytopatl:

It sounds like good news if he rehabs it properly. It is a little disturbing, however, that more big schools did not pursue him.

Do any of you recruiting gurus have the poop on him? How many stars?

3 star. Another 3 star :/

Kiffin_fan writes:

You can't pay attention to stars. I went to school with a no star recruit named Bruce Wilkerson. Some of you might not remember him but he earned a Super Bowl ring with the Green Bay Packers. Don't worry about the stars out of High School, its what they do after, that really matters.... Go Vols...

orangecountry21 writes:

ESPN's analysis seemed hardly impressed saying he MIGHT end up being a productive player

okievol writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

3 star. Another 3 star :/

Sam Bradford - 3*
Colt McCoy - 3*
Jon Crompton - 5*

**********

Kiffin_fan writes:

ESPN also didn't give the Heistman to Peyton... were you impressed??

txvolsfan writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

ESPN's analysis seemed hardly impressed saying he MIGHT end up being a productive player

Yea, ESPN is never wrong!!! LOL

LDDFC912 writes:

STARS = phooey.

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to txvolsfan:

Yea, ESPN is never wrong!!! LOL

Amen TX... why so much negativity all the time???

Kiffin_fan writes:

Not you Tx talking about others....

LDDFC912 writes:

PEYTON + ERIC BERRY + ESPN = BOHICA !

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Kiffin_fan:

Amen TX... why so much negativity all the time???

Because we are in recruiting battles with USF and Florida Atlantic. We seldom win recruiting players between Florida and Alabama.

Louisvol8859 writes:

This is a great pick up we needed more big uglies. Eat it Herbert you are replaced already.

Kiffin_fan writes:

Who put is in these battles???

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to Louisvol8859:

This is a great pick up we needed more big uglies. Eat it Herbert you are replaced already.

I totally agree Lou,,, we are on the way back finally...

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Kiffin_fan:

Who put is in these battles???

I don't understand the question but the reason we are 5-7 is while Florida is fighting for recruits that Southern Cal wants, we are fighting for players that USF wants.

ellisonfamily writes:

Rivals says he's a 3 star, but I bet part of that is about the knee surgery. With a whole knee, I wonder if he is more of a 4 star? There is a pretty big difference between Rivals and Scout on this guy.

Also, the surprise d-line commit -- I think -- has a lot to do with Monte Kiffin.

Slystone writes:

99 gator - why wasn't Urban on this kids list? Interested to no why the Gators or Noles weren't in the midst here.

Louisvol8859 writes:

He was a 4* until his injury then he dropped.

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

I don't understand the question but the reason we are 5-7 is while Florida is fighting for recruits that Southern Cal wants, we are fighting for players that USF wants.

That is exactly why we made a change... We are only fighting for the ones you speak of because that is the cards Kiff was dealt....

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Slystone:

99 gator - why wasn't Urban on this kids list? Interested to no why the Gators or Noles weren't in the midst here.

They were. Both offered him per Scout.

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Louisvol8859:

He was a 4* until his injury then he dropped.

Source?

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Right on Vols, we will eventually get rid of the ITES... It may take longer than I thought though... lol

pdhuff#552644 writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I welcome the young man.

What the other poster was inferring I think was that, like me, he would be glad to go toe-to-toe once again with Bama and Fla and LSU which I think HCLK will eventually bring us.

How many days, TJ?

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Kiffin_fan:

That is exactly why we made a change... We are only fighting for the ones you speak of because that is the cards Kiff was dealt....

If thesavageorange is around, who do we have a legit shot at landing this class that would make some noise (e.g Sam Montgomery, Reuben Randle, Patrick Patterson)

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to pdhuff#552644:

I welcome the young man.

What the other poster was inferring I think was that, like me, he would be glad to go toe-to-toe once again with Bama and Fla and LSU which I think HCLK will eventually bring us.

How many days, TJ?

Thats exactly what I meant PD ... help me out here.... lol

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to pdhuff#552644:

I welcome the young man.

What the other poster was inferring I think was that, like me, he would be glad to go toe-to-toe once again with Bama and Fla and LSU which I think HCLK will eventually bring us.

How many days, TJ?

That would be I.

Louisvol8859 writes:

Volquest it is in the old updates. Scout.com still has him as a 4*.

Greer_Vol_22 writes:

in response to rockytopatl:

It sounds like good news if he rehabs it properly. It is a little disturbing, however, that more big schools did not pursue him.

Do any of you recruiting gurus have the poop on him? How many stars?

rocky, its easy for the big schools to pass on him when they have guys with two good knees lined up...

hotrodvol writes:

Time for him to rehab now. Probably a redshirt, but you don't recruit for one year, but for four are five. By the time he leaves UT, he may be the best in this class.

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to Louisvol8859:

Volquest it is in the old updates. Scout.com still has him as a 4*.

Scout is definitely less reliable. They spell the names wrong half the time.

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to hotrodvol:

Time for him to rehab now. Probably a redshirt, but you don't recruit for one year, but for four are five. By the time he leaves UT, he may be the best in this class.

..............? (the last line)

nwcs writes:

>I went to school with a no star recruit named Bruce Wilkerson

Hmm, I went to school with his younger brother. Small world, eh?

gohawks1 writes:

in response to okievol:

Sam Bradford - 3*
Colt McCoy - 3*
Jon Crompton - 5*

**********

Yep. Good point.

madvillevol writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

If thesavageorange is around, who do we have a legit shot at landing this class that would make some noise (e.g Sam Montgomery, Reuben Randle, Patrick Patterson)

How about Morgan Moses, Marlon Brown, Pete White, Jelani Jenkins??? Any info???

Louisvol8859 writes:

This is what happend to Florida in his recruitment.

"Gilmore said every school that was recruiting him eventually called and said they still wanted him, with the exception of Florida. He hadn't heard anything from the Gators nearly a week after the diagnosis and two weeks after the injury."

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to nwcs:

>I went to school with a no star recruit named Bruce Wilkerson

Hmm, I went to school with his younger brother. Small world, eh?

You went to school with Jerome??? wow it is a small world....

orangecountry21 writes:

in response to madvillevol:

How about Morgan Moses, Marlon Brown, Pete White, Jelani Jenkins??? Any info???

Jelani Jenkins has reportedly told Kiffin no thanks.

Louisvol8859 writes:

Jeffery commitment... Reply

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sorry for the delay. Just got off the phone with him. He has always liked Tennessee and it was done when it was announced that Monte Kiffin was joining the staff. Working up the story now.

vtvol#210290 writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

I don't understand the question but the reason we are 5-7 is while Florida is fighting for recruits that Southern Cal wants, we are fighting for players that USF wants.

I'd be happy with a George Selvie on the Vol D front four, wouldn't you?

Kiffin_fan writes:

in response to Witch_Doctor:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Very well written, I totally agree

King53 writes:

wow...I love this kid's size. He is a beast! Good job Coach K and GO VOLS!!!

99gator writes:

apparently, the new coach likes defensive tackles.

monte kiffin must have told his son that they are a good idea.

madvillevol writes:

in response to orangecountry21:

Jelani Jenkins has reportedly told Kiffin no thanks.

Hate to hear that CLK seems to be doin a pretty good considering the timetable tho. Any news on any of the others

allvol9 writes:

Welcome to Big Orange Country Arthur! Glad to have you on board.

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