Catholic High School offensive lineman Kyler Kerbyson had scholarship offers that spanned the country, from Southern Cal to Florida, from Stanford to Alabama.
He chose home.
The 6-foot-5, 300-pound offensive tackle committed Thursday afternoon to the University of Tennessee. Ranked a three-star player by Rivals and four-star by Scout, Kerbyson became the 13th commitment for Tennessee's 2011 recruiting class.
Family factored into the choice. So did coaching.
"(Head) Coach (Derek) Dooley is just a class act," said Kerbyson, whose maternal grandfather was a 5-11 running back at Tennessee in 1954. "And, I went to a camp there, and (offensive line) Coach (Harry) Hiestand, I really learned a lot from him. And I think I could learn a lot more."
Tennessee fell behind in the chase for Kerbyson in late spring but quickly made up ground.
"They really stepped up their game," said Kerbyson. "They were sincerely sorry. They apologized. They started calling, started messaging me on Facebook and doing a lot more stuff. They got right back up in the circle."
Mack Crowder (Bristol, Tenn.) and Alan Posey (Athens, Ga.) are Tennessee's other offensive line commitments. Should Tennessee land Antonio Richardson, a 6-6, 310-pound offensive lineman from Nashville's Ensworth School, its recruiting class would receive quite the jolt.
Richardson's the News Sentinel's top prospect in the state. Rivals ranked him as the nation's 44th best player.
Tennessee, among plenty of others, has offered Richardson.
"I've talked a little with him on Facebook, and I think he's a great guy," said Kerbyson. "He still says he's going to wait until Feb. 2, or whatever Signing Day is, to make his decision. I'm going to start doing (player recruiting) more, because when I go (to UT) I want my class to be a winning class. I want us to be a great class, one that brings this program around."
In February, Vanderbilt was the first Division I school to offer Kerbyson. His recruitment snowballed into offers from Tennessee, Florida, Alabama, USC, Arkansas, Kansas, Duke, Illinois, Maryland, Memphis, Stanford, Syracuse, UCLA and Virginia.
He trimmed that to Tennessee, Duke and Alabama in recent weeks. Duke finished runner-up.
"One of my brothers actually pressured me," said Kerbyson. "He asked me a question, 'If you had to choose right now, and it was a life-or-death situation, what would you choose? Would you have a school in mind?' I said, 'I think I would.' He said, 'What makes you think that'll change in the next few weeks?' I was like, 'You got a great point right there.' So, I just called my family and sat down with them and talked it out a little bit and decided to go to UT.
"Right after we decided, we drove over to Tennessee, and I sat down in Coach Dooley's office with (offensive coordinator) Coach (Jim) Chaney and Coach Hiestand. I told them, and they were very ecstatic. They started giving me a bunch of hugs."
Tennessee's roster has three of Kerbyson's former Catholic teammates: offensive lineman Daniel Hood, tailback Dorian Cozart and defensive back Nick Branum.
Kerbyson won't wait long to play inside Neyland Stadium. Catholic will play there tonight in the Knoxville Orthopaedic Clinic's Kickoff Classic jamboree.
"I was joking around with Coach Dooley," said Kerbyson. "He said he's a little jealous I get to play in Neyland Stadium before he does."