Recruiting the state of Tennessee? Check. Locking down the legacies? Check. Pulling a national prospect like Washington D.C.'s D'Andre Payne? Check.
On Wednesday afternoon, new Volunteers coach Butch Jones added another dash of flavor to the 2014 recruiting class, taking a commitment from his former stomping grounds of Ohio. The Vols marched into Big Ten Country and secured a commitment from four-star tight end Ethan Wolf of Minster, Ohio. Wolf is the eighth commitment in this year's class and chose UT over Michigan State, Arkansas, Boston College, Cincinnati, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisville, Nebraska, Pitt, Purdue and others.
Wolf took to the Twitterverse on Wednesday afternoon proclaiming:
after a long hard recruiting process .. i decided to become a Tennessee Volunteer!! #VFL #BrickByBrick #volnation
He also tweeted the picture above, painting a brick with the word "committed" on it, going with the "brick by brick" theme of UT's rebuilding project.
Wolf committed to the Vols on Wednesday while visiting Knoxville for the second time in a couple of months. He gives UT its first tight end pledge of this year's class, and appeared to be one of the team's top targets at the position. Fellow four-star tight end Daniel Helm visited Knoxville last week. 247Sports rates Wolf a four-star and the 10th-ranked tight end in the nation. Scout also has him as a four-star and the No. 7 tight end in the country. Rivals rates him a three-star.
The 6-foot-6, 240-pound prospect makes the second tight end from the state of Ohio that Jones has brought to the Vols roster since arriving in December, joining Chardon native A.J. Branisel who signed in February. Tennessee also received a commitment from JUCO tight end Woody Quinn of Santa Ana (Calif.) College in the 2013 class. Wolf credited UT tight ends coach Mark Elder as having a big role in his commitment. He had a strong relationship with all UT's coaches dating back to their days at Cincinnati.
He is an excellent blend of pass-catcher and blocker, and he's more along the lines of the type of tight end Jones wants to deploy at UT. According to his statistics on 247Sports he had 52 catches during his junior season, and 12 of them went for touchdowns. Tennessee jumped to fourth in the Rivals team recruiting rankings and are currently sixth in 247 rankings.
Wolf joins Hendersonville (Tenn.) running back Jalen Hurd, Knoxville safety Todd Kelly Jr., Delaware wide receiver/jumbo athlete Neiko Creamer, Nashville wide receiver Vic Wharton, D.C. cornerback D'Andre Payne, Virginia offensive lineman Coleman Thomas and Atlanta running back Treyvon Paulk as UT commitments.
Welcome to Big Orange Country, Ethan!