A not so well kept secret is out.
"I'm a Tennessee Volunteer,” tight end Mychal Rivera told InsideTennessee.com.
The decision was hardly a surprise. Rivera had been the center of rampant recruiting speculation that predicted he would soon commit to UT, likely during a visit to his home from UT coach Eric Russell on Wednesday evening.
“The home visit with Coach Eric Russell went great; it’s the coaching staff at Tennessee that made my decision very easy,” the tight end from College of the Canyons in Santa Clarita, Calif., said.
That coaching staff is headed up by newly hired head coach Derek Dooley, a strong presence in Rivera’s recruitment.
“Coach Dooley is going to do great things at Tennessee,” Rivera said. “He is a very honest guy that is easy to trust. You can tell he is very passionate about being in Knoxville and the SEC.”
“…He told me that I will have three coaches at Tennessee. Coach Eric Russell will coach me, the OC (offensive coordinator) Jim Chaney coached tight ends last year and Dooley said he will help also.”
Rivera took his official visit to UT last weekend and eventually chose the Vols over Kansas State.
“The facilities were insane,” Rivera said of UT. “They are the best I have seen anywhere.”
Rivera also reportedly fielded scholarship offers from South Carolina and Utah State.
Rivera is UT’s 19th commitment for the 2010 class. The Vols are expected to sign approximately 27 prospects. National Signing Day is Feb. 3.