The Tennessee Vols aren’t putting all their eggs in one basket when it comes to signing a quarterback in the 2022 recruiting class.
There’s no doubt that four-star quarterback Ty Simpson is the Vols’ top target.
Simpson, 6-foot-2/185 lbs from Martin, TN, is rated in 247Sports’ composite rankings as the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the nation.
I think Simpson would be a perfect fit in new UT head coach Josh Heupel’s offense. His playing style reminds me of Patrick Mahomes, an NFL superstar who has roots in an offensive system similar to Heupel’s.
Unfortunately for the Vols, there’s a lot of competition for Simpson.
Alabama and Clemson are heavily pursuing the Tennessee native, who is slated to announce his commitment on February 26.
While I think the Vols have a legitimate shot to land Simpson, I still lean toward him landing at Alabama or Clemson. Simpson has a bright future ahead of him, and with all the unknowns at Tennessee (new coaching staff, incoming NCAA sanctions), it would certainly be understandable if he said no thanks to the Volunteers.
That’s why it’s important for Heupel and his staff to continue to look at other 2022 quarterback options, which is exactly what they’re doing.
In addition to Simpson, the Vols are also pursuing a couple of solid options.
Sam Horn, a four-star pro-style quarterback from Suwanee, GA, is an option that Heupel and his staff really like.
Horn has a strong baseball background (as does Simpson), which is a trait that is common with a lot of elite quarterbacks. The Georgia native isn’t a speedster, but he has more than enough mobility to escape pressure.
Another option the Vols appear to be interested in is three-star dual-threat quarterback Tevin Carter, a Memphis native who is receiving some attention from new Vols running backs coach Jerry Mack (he recruits the Memphis area for Tennessee).
— Tevin Carter (@tevincarter_2) February 19, 2021
Carter is kind of an under-the-radar recruit. He has offers from Auburn, LSU, Ole Miss, South Carolina, and Texas A&M (among others), which means the way programs view him doesn’t necessarily line up with his recruiting ranking.
It’s clear that Tennessee has made Simpson the focus of their recruiting efforts. But it’s also clear they are making sure they have other quality options ready to go in case it doesn’t work out with Simpson.
The good news for Vol fans is that Heupel and his staff have a strong track record of developing quarterbacks that aren’t highly rated. So regardless of who signs with Tennessee, we should still see much better quarterback play on Rocky Top moving forward.
Featured image via Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports