Rivals.com national recruiting analyst Mike Farrell has been talking recruiting, while attending the U.S. Army All-American game in San Antonio. He was asked to size up the Vols recruiting under new head coach Butch Jones.
Said Farrell,"He has put a good staff together. I think they have gotten aggressive with the 2014 class already, so they are making in-roads. It's a very, very strong year in the state of Tennessee for 2014, current juniors. They have to close strong this year. Get some bodies in there. Get some athletes, and I think they will do that. His biggest hire was Tommy Thigpen from Auburn. That guy can recruit. He's a tremendous recruiter. He's got ties to North Carolina. He has recruited the Deep South. We worried about Brian Kelly's ability to recruit when he went to Notre Dame from Cincinnati because Cincinnati gets the scraps left over from the Big Ten. We'll see if Butch Jones has the same thing. So far, I've been impressed with him. I think he's a good coach. Now will Tennessee be back and be a national championship contender? Time will tell. The SEC is kind of stacked. It looks like a few SEC East teams are in a little bit better shape right now. But I think he will be able to recruit effectively."