This weekend is shaping up as another impressive showing for Tennessee’s football recruiters.
UT is hosting hundreds of campers for its annual summer camp. Many are among the nation’s elite prospects.
The camp, which began on Thursday and concludes on Saturday, is a valuable recruiting tool because UT’s coaches are allowed to work out prospects.
Recruiting coordinator Ed Orgeron has frequently said that seeing prospects firsthand in a camp setting is one of the most important aspects of his evaluations.
The camp, which is off limits to the media, also allows Tennessee to showcase its facilities to prospective athletes.
UT hosted more than 400 campers for three individual day camps earlier this month. Attendance at overnight camps is usually greater because prospects can stay at UT’s facilities.
Here are some notables who were expected to attend:
Jesse Scroggins: The quarterback from Lakewood (Calif.) High School seems a good fit for UT. He has family in Memphis and is one of the top high school QB prospects in the nation, which is the top priority for the Vols’ 2010 class.
UT has missed out on some other highly rated quarterback prospects.
Pahokee High School: So much for the tiff between UT head coach Lane Kiffin and this Florida high school. UT will host 13 prospects from Pahokee.
UT has offered scholarships to receiver De’Joshua Johnson, linebacker Zachary Allen, cornerback Merrill Noel and defensive linemen Richard Ash and Antonio Ford.
Noel, Johnson, Allen and Ash are visiting UT this weekend.
Signing former athlete Nu’Keese Richardson from Pahokee last February can only help the Vols build a pipeline into Florida.
Miami Northwestern: The talent-rich school sent a handful of prospects this weekend.
Offensive guard Torrian Wilson is one headliner. UT has offered Wilson a scholarship. He is still considering several schools.
Miami commitment Todd Chandler is also thought to be in town.
Jeff Luc: Many believe the prospect from Treasure Coast High School in Port St. Lucie, Fla. is the best high school linebacker prospect in the country. His presence at Tennessee’s camp will turn some heads.
Jarred Haggins: An athlete from Lakeland (Fla.) High School, Haggins has said he’s close to announcing a decision. There are plenty of suitors awaiting that announcement.
UT’s ability to recruit South Florida so quickly and effectively has been impressive. Credit UT assistant coach Eddie Gran.
Lache Seastrunk: One of the nation’s elite tailback prospects from Temple (Texas) High School. Rivals ranks Seastrunk No. 1 among high school tailbacks in the 2010 class. Scout has him at No. 2.
Cody Riggs: Many thought Notre Dame had the lead for this defensive back from St. Thomas Aquinas in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Then Riggs reportedly named Florida and Georgia as co-leaders. UT has an inside track. Riggs is the younger brother of former UT tailback Gerald Riggs, Jr.
Lamarcus Joyner: Another standout defensive back from St. Thomas Aquinas, the cornerback is considered one of the elite prospects in the nation.
Keion Payne: Yet another defensive back from St. Thomas Aquinas. Payne isn’t rated as highly as his teammates but is a solid prospect. He recently spoke highly about a visit to Miami.
DeMarco Cobbs: The athlete from Tulsa (Ok.) High School was recently named one of the top standouts at an Oklahoma camp. A versatile athlete with good size, Cobbs will likely play receiver in college.
Evan Hailes: The defensive tackle from Oscar Smith High School in Chesapeake, Va. has said he’d like to play with former high school teammate Jerod Askew, a Tennessee signee. Hailes has said he expects to make a decision soon. The Vols appear to be in good standing.
Jonathan Mincy: Tennessee has some work to do to land the cornerback from Southwest Dekalb High School in Decatur, Ga. Mincy has taken three visits to Auburn and has called the Tigers a strong leader.
Anthony Johnson: A commitment for the 2011 class, Johnson is another tie into Louisiana via O. Perry High School in New Orleans.
Urell Johnson: A speedy cornerback from O. Perry High School, Johnson would be a good fit for the Vols. UT assistant Frank Wilson should have the inside track. He coached at O. Perry.