ATHENS — Former Tennessee football captain and tight end Eli Wolf has announced he’s transferring to Georgia .
Wolf will count against UGA’s 2020 class and will play for the Bulldogs this coming season after graduating from Tennessee in May.
Wolf, a graduate transfer, announced his decision on Thursday:
“My decision to play my final year of eligibility at Georgia is a combination of many things, but first and foremost it was best for my future.”
“I am excited to earn my degree from the University of Tennessee in May. Four years ago I arrived at Tennessee as a walk-on and I want to thank all the coaches, past and present, who helped me develop both on and off the field.
Big thanks to Vol nation and all their support over the years. I will leave Knoxville with nothing but great memories and some life-long friendships.”
It couldn’t come at a better time or place for Georgia.
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The Bulldogs are looking to replace departing junior tight end Isaac Nauta and transferring freshman Luke Ford. UGA returns two healthy tight ends, rising senior Charlie Woerner and redshirt freshman John FitzPatrick.
Mid-term enrollee Ryland Goede is coming off a knee injury last season, and UGA filled out the tight end room by signing freshman Brett Seither.
“Coach (Kirby) Smart and the staff have been nothing short of amazing with me throughout the process,” Wolf told DawgNation. “They gave me time to consider my options, but at the same time were consistent with their message of how I can help them win a championship next year. I couldn’t ask for a better situation to close out my collegiate football career.”
The 6-foot-4, 236-pound Wolf was used primarily as a blocker last season under first-year head coach Jeremy Pruitt.
Nauta, who has talked with the UGA coaching staff and Wolf, said the Bulldogs see the former Vol as more of a pass catcher.
“The biggest thing with Georgia recruiting Eli is with me leaving and Luke (Ford) transferring, the tight end room is pretty thin,” Nauta told DawgNation. “They need a guy with experience and a guy who can make plays in the passing game, and they see him as that.”
Pruitt named Wolf Tennessee’s most improved offensive player last spring and chose him to represent the Vols’ program at SEC Media Days last summer.
Wolf was a standout receiver at Minster High School in Ohio, where he holds all of the schools’ receiving records. He set marks for career receptions (124), receiving yards (2,234) and receiving touchdowns (27) over three varsity seasons (2012-14).
Wolf caught five of the six passes thrown his way last season — the incompletion was not catchable. He caught all five of his targets in the Orange and White Game last spring, leading UT receivers with five catches that went for 63 yards and a touchdown.
“I’m currently working out five days per week with a personal trainer in Knoxville specializing in speed and strength,” Wolf said. “In addition, I’m doing on field training twice a week staying sharp with my mechanics and learning new ways to get better.”
Wolf said he’s confident he can transition quickly into the Georgia offense.
“Having three offensive coordinators in the past four years I have familiarized myself with a college level playbook,” Wolf said. “I have a great foundation there, so I feel that transition will be a smooth one.”
Georgia football tight end Eli Wolf