Dooley convinces QB Nance to switch to Vols

UT will wait to see if star WR Rogers joins ex-Vanderbilt commitment

Nash Nance always liked Tennessee — just from afar.

Truth be told, the 6-foot-3, 200-pound quarterback from Calhoun (Ga.) High School may have committed to play for the Vols even earlier, had it not been for the way he was recruited by UT’s former staff.

Nance got a strong feeling that former UT recruiting coordinator Ed Orgeron (who left UT with former coach Lane Kiffin for Southern California earlier this month) wanted Nance and his good friend, highly touted receiver Da’Rick Rogers, as a package deal.

That wasn’t the case when newly hired UT coach Derek Dooley came calling.

“In my opinion,” Nance wrote Thursday in a text message to the News Sentinel, “the Vol Nation has a new head coach with integrity, extreme drive to be successful and a common man that all young athletes will relate to and will love going to battle with every Saturday.

“… I am so relieved and blessed to have this opportunity to play football for the University of Tennessee!”

Nance, who committed to Vanderbilt last June, visited UT over the weekend and was offered by the Vols.

On Wednesday night, Nance had an in-home visit with Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson and de-committed.

In his text message, Nance said the decision to de-committ to Vandy was a tough, emotional one, but that the opportunity to play for Dooley and UT offensive coordinator Jim Chaney, who built some standout offenses at Purdue, was the better fit.

The fact that UT’s coaches like Nance just for Nance was a big factor as well.

“They like him because of his ability, not a package deal,” said Nance’s father, Mike Nance. “They want him because of his ability, whether Da’Rick comes or not.”

Now, that doesn’t mean that Rogers, who has been committed to Georgia since June, is a lost cause. Expect Nash Nance to sell the Vols until Rogers’ decision becomes final on National Signing Day. Mike Nance said he wouldn’t be surprised if the decision remained a secret until Rogers signs his letter of intent on Wednesday.

“That’s something we really don’t know about,” Mike Nance said. “That’s a decision that Da’Rick will have to make. Surely Nash is going to try to recruit him. He’d rather be playing with him than against him.”

And for good reason. Rogers is considered one of the elite receiver prospects in the nation, and the highest rated prospect in Georgia.

Mike Nance has served as mentor to the 6-3, 205-pound Rogers since shortly after he and his son met in the 10th grade and became good friends. The two even transferred together to Calhoun, in part, to participate in an offense more focused on the pass than the running attack they were used to at their previous school.

The move worked. Nance completed over 70 percent of his passes for 3,020 yards and 29 touchdowns while running for over 400 yards last season.

Rogers set the all-time Georgia receiving record with 1,647 receiving yards on 85 receptions, including 22 touchdowns.

All that despite being pulled from their games by halftime in seven of Calhoun’s 15 games because the score was too lopsided to keep the stars on the field.

“He had a really, really exceptional senior year,” Mike Nance said of Rogers.

That is an understatement.

Rogers was at his best when the games were the biggest. In five playoff games, Rogers caught 37 passes for 707 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Now the off-the-field, Nance-Rogers’ relationship will get interesting. Nash Nance didn’t have much of a chance of wooing Rogers to Vanderbilt, where Nance had been committed since June.

UT is a different story, especially after Rogers’ enjoyable official visit to Knoxville last weekend and the connection he’s made with the Vols’ new coaching staff.

However, there are also connections to Georgia that must be overcome. Calhoun coach Hal Lamb is the son of Ray Lamb, Georgia’s director of high school relations.

Mike Nance finds himself in an unenviable position. Sure, he’d like to see his son and Rogers play together, but a true mentor can’t be biased.

“It’s something I’m not going to push on Da’Rick,” Mike Nance said. “He needs to make his own decision.”

The Nances made it clear: they don’t believe Dooley was looking for a package deal. But he sure wouldn’t turn it down.

“Nash and Da’Rick have been close ever since,” Mike Nance said. “They’re just like brothers.”

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Comments » 73

TNParker writes:

First! Go get em Coach!

appalachianvol writes:

DGood read! Hope this story gets better.

pomp_and_circumstance writes:

Mike Nance scares me. He is much too informative about his son's doings and sounds like he believes he was part of a package deal, whether Rogers is or not. Any echo of momma Mustain of Ark. fame is scary.

DownTheField writes:

2* ... hmmm... this will probably be the last we hear of this guy

WCVolFan writes:

My question is: how did Nance fit all that into a text message?! ;)

marvinVol writes:

Pretty good recruiting by Dooley and a pretty go mentor in Nashs Dad.

Go Vols!!!!

Ringside writes:

Good luck to both young men. Welcome to Big Orange country Mr. Nance. Bring it!
GBO!
Thanks Coach Dooley for being in Knoxville!I hope it's a damn long stay.

orangezone writes:

Wide receiver U! Come to UT Da'Rick! Welcome aboard Nash.

corrytonvol4ever writes:

Continue the good work CDD!!! The VOL Nation is behind you 100% !!

ornglovinyankealum writes:

Looks like a great potential duo to me.GO VOLS!!

LiveFaith writes:

I liked this deal from the beginning. Remember this the a x2 win if you get these two. Not only do you get a recruit you want, but your rivals do not! I'm not sure NN will be a starter here, but he's obviously pretty smart and has put up big numbers. You don't wanna take the chance that he does pan out for the camode doors and end up biting us. Da rick is the same, except he's pretty obviously special and would be a direct hit on probably our 3rd most important rival. Get em' coaches.

Just a thot here. But you never know if Da Rick has played UT in order to get his friend a higher detination, only to keep his UGA commit as he always intended? That's cold, but no more cold than the possibility that UT is recruiting his friend for a package deal. Remember the Daniel Brooks deal Fulmer pulled?

Cldvols1 writes:

Bring it on to The Hill, you too Da'Rick! GBO

Cldvols1 writes:

Just saw on Scout.com where we picked up a commitment from Rajion Neal?

tnsportsman writes:

It's third & two at the AL 40 yard line, Nash brings the Vols to the line, he is checking off THE Da'Rick is in motion left. Nash drops back looks right, THE Da'Rick is open down the left sideline, Nash throws, THE Da'Rick at the 20, 15, 10, 5 GIVE HIM SIX! Touchdown THE Da'Rick Touchdown TENNESSEE and the Vols lead 17 to 0!

LOL GO VOLS!

VOLsince68 writes:

We just got Raijon Neal if you haven't heard. It's on Scouts and Rivals.

Go get em' CDD.

GO VOLS!!!!!!

All_Vol writes:

in response to DownTheField:

2* ... hmmm... this will probably be the last we hear of this guy

For what its worth, there is a certain 3* QB and UT alum playing in the Super Bowl in a couple of weeks. Just saying ....

lahvolman2 writes:

in response to pomp_and_circumstance:

Mike Nance scares me. He is much too informative about his son's doings and sounds like he believes he was part of a package deal, whether Rogers is or not. Any echo of momma Mustain of Ark. fame is scary.

Could get interesting... we'll find out real soon if CDD can hold his own against money people accustomed to getting their way... the Nance's are old carpet money people with the money talks and BS walks attitude...

Hillbilly_Orange writes:

I like Coach Dooley more & more each day! The more I hear how these kids like & respect him as a coach and a person makes me proud to bleed orange! GBO!!!!

ethanfrome writes:

Glug, glug, glug, glug, glug. Hhhhhhhh! Glug, glug, glug, glug, glug lug, glug...

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

Watching Nance Nash's video, he looks to me like...uh...Tim Tebow. Is that a good thing?

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to VOLsince68:

We just got Raijon Neal if you haven't heard. It's on Scouts and Rivals.

Go get em' CDD.

GO VOLS!!!!!!

Thanks for the great news! Neal got appeal. He is as good looking a RB as I have seen, period.

Gator_Hater (Inactive) writes:

in response to steamboatticket#484773:

Thanks for the great news! Neal got appeal. He is as good looking a RB as I have seen, period.

Not to mention that Rivals readjusted their position rankings and Neal is rated the #9 RB in the country! Top Ten recruiting finish is definately in sight now.

send writes:

anyone heard anything about def. coaches?

OhioOrange writes:

in response to All_Vol:

For what its worth, there is a certain 3* QB and UT alum playing in the Super Bowl in a couple of weeks. Just saying ....

Thank you All_Vol. He is three star according to scout.com. and I don't care how many stars some cave dweller has assigned him, all I need to see is:
“the Vol Nation has a new head coach with integrity, extreme drive to be successful and a common man that all young athletes will relate to and will love going to battle with every Saturday."
I appreciate you "just sayin'"!

dvols writes:

in response to send:

anyone heard anything about def. coaches?

after signing day coach d will focus more on the wrapping up the coaching staff....

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

Watching Nance Nash inclines me to wonder if Chaney and Dooley plan on REALLY mixing it up. Coach Dooley spoke about having to do that to win. I'm talking about two different offenses with two different QBs. Yeah, that's a stretch. Or maybe not. Maybe it is not a stretch at all...just a lot of hard work.

DerekDooleyisGOD writes:

I just talked to Nash....dont believe me if you dont want to i go to high school with him and grew up three doors down. He told me that Da'rick is a sure thing to UT he is just waiting till signing day to make it more fun for everyone and build the suspense! THERE is a GOD and his name is DEREK DOOLEY!!!! SUCK EM DAWGS YEEEEHAWWWWW! BRING ON Da'rick hes the savior the almight the FREAKIN MESSIAH! BTW Mike Nance= HUGE FIRECROTCH DOUCHE!!!!! ROCKY FREAKIN TOP!

DerekDooleyisGOD writes:

PACKAGE DEAL what a steal nash nance the underrated 2* phenom AND his father: MIKE NANCE the red headed Douche who manufactures carpet and sells it to Wal-Mart! FREE CARPET for all UT FANS!!! HAHAHAHAHA Mike go ahead and bring the ROCKYTOP ORANGE hair of yours up to KNOX county! YEEEEHEEEEEAAAWWWWWW! MIKE KNOX was born a VOL look at his hair!!!!

lomas98 writes:

This is the first time since Casey Clausen's freshman season I can remember having several QB's to battle it out in the spring and fall. Stephens, Bray, Simms, Nance, Lemonier. Nance will likely redshirt. This years QB recruiting class across the country has been called pretty weak by recruiting experts, so the more competition the better.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to lomas98:

This is the first time since Casey Clausen's freshman season I can remember having several QB's to battle it out in the spring and fall. Stephens, Bray, Simms, Nance, Lemonier. Nance will likely redshirt. This years QB recruiting class across the country has been called pretty weak by recruiting experts, so the more competition the better.

My thinking is that the Nicks will be one and two. I could be totally wrong. The two frosh look to need another ten or twenty pounds of muscle. Redshirts, maybe. Simms could also redshirt if others don't. But my guess is that he will be the scrappy one pushing the leaders. Honestly, I think all of these guys are players. We went what, two years without a QB commit? Well, "dear friends, everything is all right tonight, here in the powerhouse" stadium.

Smallmike4pres writes:

in response to All_Vol:

For what its worth, there is a certain 3* QB and UT alum playing in the Super Bowl in a couple of weeks. Just saying ....

3*? I think he was the number 1 recruit in the nation, wasn't he? Nash could have negative stars for all I care if he can bring Rogers with him.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to Smallmike4pres:

3*? I think he was the number 1 recruit in the nation, wasn't he? Nash could have negative stars for all I care if he can bring Rogers with him.

Don't kid yourself, Nash is a player.

DownTheField writes:

in response to All_Vol:

For what its worth, there is a certain 3* QB and UT alum playing in the Super Bowl in a couple of weeks. Just saying ....

Listen, making things up doesn't make them true. We need OL.

stayingorange writes:

in response to DownTheField:

2* ... hmmm... this will probably be the last we hear of this guy

Yeah 2* based on opinion ... and completed over 70 percent of his passes for 3,020 yards and 29 touchdowns while running for over 400 yards last season based on facts on the field.

UTVOLSRROCKN writes:

Welcome to BOC Nash! We are really HAPPY to have you here! Glad you didn't go to Vandy!
VOLS......TCB.....KOKO......GBO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

DownTheField writes:

in response to stayingorange:

Yeah 2* based on opinion ... and completed over 70 percent of his passes for 3,020 yards and 29 touchdowns while running for over 400 yards last season based on facts on the field.

that's great.. i guess you and the harvard coach are the only ones who had access to the stats

lomas98 writes:

in response to steamboatticket#484773:

My thinking is that the Nicks will be one and two. I could be totally wrong. The two frosh look to need another ten or twenty pounds of muscle. Redshirts, maybe. Simms could also redshirt if others don't. But my guess is that he will be the scrappy one pushing the leaders. Honestly, I think all of these guys are players. We went what, two years without a QB commit? Well, "dear friends, everything is all right tonight, here in the powerhouse" stadium.

I wouldn't think Simms would redshirt at all since he was a junior college player. He probably only has 3 yrs eligibility at best. I think when schools go the jc route, they expect them to play or at least be a backup.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orP7GD...

Folks, the second vid on Martaze Jackson has him clocked at a camp with a 4.5/40. The concern from the sheets was his speed, but he has it. The guy is an athlete and he is driven, works out all day long according to his own words. He is a little under the Big Board radar, but no worries.

VOLHolla writes:

in response to ethanfrome:

Glug, glug, glug, glug, glug. Hhhhhhhh! Glug, glug, glug, glug, glug lug, glug...

why - yes I think I will have another......more please.

I am with ya

HOLLA

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to lomas98:

I wouldn't think Simms would redshirt at all since he was a junior college player. He probably only has 3 yrs eligibility at best. I think when schools go the jc route, they expect them to play or at least be a backup.

Right, well I am speculating about QBs, since we now have some. My understanding about the redshirt(please correct me if I am wrong) is this. A player can practice with the team. But unless he actually plays in a game, then he can be redshirted and retain that year of eligiblity. Simms may be the odd man out in our QB roster, or he may be the wild card that gets played. I certainly don't know. His form has been compared to Drew Brees, meaning that his delivery looks a little weird but gets the ball where it needs to be.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

in response to Hillbilly_Orange:

I like Coach Dooley more & more each day! The more I hear how these kids like & respect him as a coach and a person makes me proud to bleed orange! GBO!!!!

I wanted Kippy, but you know what? I think that Ham was right, and I was wrong. Coach Derek will add glory to the great name of Dooley and the great name of Tennessee.

steamboatticket#484773 writes:

If Nance redshirts, I would expect three things. One is development of his arm strength and passing technique. Two is added strength and possibly speed for running the ball. Three is additional plays to our game plans with field practice which takes advantage of his skills.

redthawk writes:

I think the biggest thing this recruit does is allows us to redshirt Bray, and retain some good depth at the position. Bray can make the throws, but really needs at least a year to build up some muscle and be that great starter we need. This way he doesn't waste a year of eligibility and we can be comfortable with what we have for this next year at QB

bigorangejeffy writes:

in response to TNParker:

First! Go get em Coach!

WAY TO GO SLUGGER!
if we dont get da'rick rogers out of this its a wasted scholarship

volunteerfan27204#295834 writes:

Dooley doin it the right Way!!!! Check out my new post and make sure you watch the video, it's an awesome motivation segment as if we needed it now, but it will get your Orange blood pumping and ready for some damn football!

http://smokiespost.blogspot.com/
.

wayoutwill writes:

in response to DownTheField:

2* ... hmmm... this will probably be the last we hear of this guy

This young man is gonna be a smart heady athlete,will find him a spot on the defense;most likely at one of the safety spots;it's just very hard to say where these young men will peak out at over the next five years,but this one has a shot to be a very good college football player and there's no harm in signing a player that can pull another great ballplayer along with him;if it works out that this Rogers kid is as close as it appears;we will give Ga. a run for his services.Dooley is showing more and more why he was the pick and I really thought that Kippy was the man until I heard Dooley speak,at which time I understood why he was hired and at this point,I firmly belive that he is the man for the job,that he is going to be a great football Coach on the major college level;I still wonder if the Vols will be his final stop though;I hate that we may lose him to our rivals down south when and if Mark Richt's expiration date comes!Oh,well,GO BIG ORANGE!

SavTnVol writes:

in response to steamboatticket#484773:

If Nance redshirts, I would expect three things. One is development of his arm strength and passing technique. Two is added strength and possibly speed for running the ball. Three is additional plays to our game plans with field practice which takes advantage of his skills.

Is it just me, or does NN's size, arm strength and maybe running ability, along with this post, remind you of anyone? Not as highly rated coming outta high school, but from what everyone is saying, I hate to say the name, but Tebowish??? FYI, Peyton was not a 3 star rated qb out of HS..He was, I believe, the #2 rated qb in the nation.

gnm53108 writes:

Redshirt.

V_O_L_S_GO_VOLS_GO writes:

I work in Dalton, GA just north of Calhoun, and I work with a gentleman who's the father of a kid on the Calhoun team. He's really praising Nance, but he called Da'Rick a "Freak of Nature" because of his athletic ability. He also said he'd 'bet the house' that Da'Rick decommits from UGA and comes with Nance. Gotta be a packaged deal.

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