Trevarris Saulsberry had grown impatient.
The Gainesville (Fla.) High defensive tackle, a Tennessee commitment since early August, had known for a long time that his teammate, 6-foot-4, 240-pound defensive end Jordan Williams, was a heavy lean to follow him to Knoxville. Williams, though, had to take his time and evaluate his options, which included offers from all around the SEC and a number of other teams from around the country.
That suspense ended Wednesday night, when Williams became UT’s 18th commitment for the class of 2011.
“I’m happy that he’s a Vol,” Saulsberry said.
Williams, a three-star according to both Rivals.com and Scout.com, had narrowed his offer list down to three schools: Tennessee, Oregon and South Florida. Williams visited Oregon last week on an official visit for the Ducks’ 43-23 win over Washington State.
The difference-maker, Saulsberry said, might have been UT defensive line coach Chuck Smith.
“He was talking about how much he loved Coach Smith and how the program was good for him and how he fits right into it,” Saulsberry said. “But he was still trying to weigh out his options with Oregon and USF.”
Williams, ranked the 44th best defensive end in the country by Rivals, is the Vols’ second defensive end and fourth defensive lineman to commit for 2011, joining Saulsberry, DE Juda Parker (Honolulu, Hawaii) and DT Allan Carson (Oxford, Ala.). He is the third Floridian to commit to the Vols.
Williams and Saulsberry will be among a number of current commitments and UT targets on campus for the Oct. 23 game at Neyland Stadium against Alabama.
“I’m excited to know that I actually have somebody I know on the team,” Saulsberry said. “Jordan is like my brother. He’s the closest person to me.”
Andrew Gribble can be reached at 865-342-6327.