ESPN’s Mark Schlabach reported on Thursday that Tennessee will not be extending any contracts for assistant coaches and implemented a hiring freeze on any vacancies as it investigates any recruiting violations that occurred within Jeremy Pruitt’s program.
In the same report, Schlabach mentions that one of the players involved in the inquiry by Tennessee’s compliance department is 5-star Georgia signee Amarius Mims.
Mims is Georgia’s top-ranked signee in the 2021 recruiting class, as he was the No. 1 player in the state of Georgia and the No. 7 overall player in the 2021 recruiting cycle. Mims committed to Georgia back in October and signed in December. He is already on campus for Georgia.
The Cochran, Ga., standout picked the Bulldogs over Tennessee and Alabama. Georgia has the No. 3 ranked recruiting class in the 247Sports Composite rankings. Tennessee’s recruiting class is No. 15 at the current moment.
Mims is not the only player involved in the investigation, as Schlabach reports that current Tennessee running back Eric Gray was also involved. Gray was held out of Tennessee’s final game of the 2020 season against Texas A&M and Schlabach reports that the investigation played a part in that.
Ironically the assistant coach in charge of recruiting Mims is no longer at Tennessee, as Will Friend had accepted the offensive line coach opening at South Carolina. It was reported on Thursday morning that Friend, along with South Carolina offensive coordinator Mike Bobo, are expected to take the same jobs at Auburn according to FootballScoop.com.
Tennessee struggled on the field this season, going 3-7 in Pruitt’s third year in the program. The Volunteers have also seen some high-profile departures this off-season, as leading rusher Ty Chandler entered the transfer portal, while Tennessee’s top pass-rusher Deandre Johnson transferred to Miami.
Georgia beat Tennessee 44-21 in Athens this season.
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