Tennessee is upset at Peters for switching to the Hogs

It is nice to be feared by the Vols. They rejoiced when it was announced that they would not have to play the Hogs in 2012.

Arkansas wide receiver Joe Adams breaks tackles to return a punt for a touchdown against Tennessee at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville on Nov. 12, 2011. UT lost the game 49-7. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)<br /><br />
” width=”607″ /></p><br />
<p>Photo by <a title=Amy Smotherman Burgess, ©KNS/2011

Arkansas wide receiver Joe Adams breaks tackles to return a punt for a touchdown against Tennessee at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville on Nov. 12, 2011. UT lost the game 49-7. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Arkansas wide receiver Joe Adams breaks past Tennessee defensive back Brian Randolph  to return a punt for a touchdown at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville on Nov. 12, 2011. UT lost the game 49-7. (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)<br /><br />
” width=”607″ /></p><br />
<p>Photo by <a title=Amy Smotherman Burgess, ©KNS/2011

In the article below you can see that the player who lived in Texas that switched to Texas could be explained away and the one that lived in Virginia that switched to VA Tech could also but the Vols don’t have an explanation for why the 4 star linebacker Otha Peters switched from his commitment to the Vols to sign with the Hogs. (I have another post on this too.) Rick Schaffer told me that it was John Adams who wrote in 1992 that the visiting Hogs did not have  a chance against the #4 ranked Vols in Knoxville, but it did not turn out that way.

Below is an article from http://www.knoxnews.com :

John Adams: Recruiting reveals state of UT program

By John Adams

Originally published 08:48 p.m., February 1, 2012
Updated 09:18 p.m., February 1, 2012

Tennessee signed 21 football recruits Wednesday. If you want to know what that means to the future of UT football, you have come to the wrong place.

But I can venture an opinion on what the class says about the current state of UT football. The opinion was formulated by recognizing a handful of recruiting hits and taking note of a couple of misses.

Bottom line: UT is more desperate than prosperous.

First, the misses — the most telling of which were linebacker commitment Otha Peters, and defensive tackle Korren Kirven, who entered the stretch run of recruiting seemingly torn between UT and Virginia Tech.

Peters opted for Arkansas the day before signing. Kirven backed off the Vols and Hokies for national champion Alabama.

Those were not-so-subtle reminders that when you have suffered through three losing seasons in the last four years, you can be as vulnerable in recruiting battles with more successful programs as you are on the field.

Losing long-standing linebacker commitment Dalton Santos to Texas wasn’t as significant. He grew up a Texas fan. When the Longhorns finally expressed interest, he couldn’t resist.

But neither Peters nor Kirven had a childhood infatuation with the program they chose. They were out-of-state signees who picked top-10 teams over a team that just went 5-7 and lost six assistant coaches.

As for the hits, the standout signee is obvious. His name is Deion Bonner, a cornerback from Columbus, Ga.

I don’t know Bonner’s 40 time or vertical jump. I just know he was charged with a crime while visiting Georgia’s campus.

How’s that for standing out?

He stands out further since second-year coach Derek Dooley and his staff have talked so much about recruiting “high-character” players in rebuilding UT’s program.

“When I say bringing in high character (players), that doesn’t mean I’m never going to bring in guys who have made mistakes,” Dooley said at Wednesday’s media gathering. “Because I’ve made as many mistakes in my life as anybody.

“We did a lot of diligence on the situation. Deion was incredibly truthful and incredibly remorseful.”

No matter what glowing attributes the Vols might have uncovered in their recruitment of Bonner, does that outweigh a police report? He was one of three people arrested by University of Georgia police following the theft of iPods and iPhones from the unsecured lockers of seven Georgia players.

Recruiting interest in Bonner waned elsewhere after the incident, but not at UT, reminding you that the pursuit of high-character players sounds better in theory than in the reality of back-to-back losing seasons.

Dooley needs a talent upgrade. Fast. So he’s willing to take a chance on a player who can’t resist the temptation of an unlocked locker but might be a lock-down corner.

Given UT’s immediate needs, junior college players are more alluring than ever, which brings up encouraging news for UT fans. When you check out the resumes of this class, three of the most impressive are from the junior college ranks.

Never mind what defensive lineman Darrington Sentimore accomplished at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College. I remember him as a backup lineman at Alabama. I also remember that he looked like an Alabama lineman. That’s high praise for a UT signee.

Daniel McCullers looks like a former Alabama lineman. McCullers, who last played at Georgia Military Institute, is in the Terrence Cody weight division at 6-foot-6, 380 pounds. As the 3-4 alignment becomes more prominent in UT’s defensive plans, it’s helpful to have someone towering over center who, as Dooley put it, is like “two people.”

Cordarrelle Patterson is a consensus five-star wide receiver coming to a program that can benefit enormously from a five-star anybody. So even if Patterson falters at the major-college level, his signing flashes neon bright for now — just as Kenny O’Neal’s once did.

UT signed O’Neal as a junior college five-star wide receiver five years ago. He had two career catches at Tennessee.

But the Vols can’t think about potential recruiting busts now. They have to hope that Patterson plays up to his billing, McCullers becomes the next Mt. Cody, and Sentimore plays like what he once was — an Alabama lineman.

That’s the state of UT football.

John Adams is a senior columnist. He may be reached at 865-342-6284 oradamsj@knoxnews.com. Follow him at http://twitter.com/johnadamskns

Arkansas wide receiver Joe Adams runs back a punt for a touchdown against Tennessee at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville on Nov. 12, 2011.  (AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />

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