What is National Signing Day?
NSD, usually the first Wednesday of February, is the first day that a high school senior can sign a binding National Letter of Intent for college football with a school that is a member of the NCAA. Quite simply, it's the day that recruits sign a piece of paper that creates a contract between the player and the school.1
When is National Signing Day?
February the 4th, 2015, which is today, unless you're some sort of time-traveling wizard.
Where can I watch all this hot fax machine recruiting action about the Tennessee Vols?
- ESPN's National Signing Day Special begins at 8 AM Eastern, and will run for eleven grueling hours.2 Signing day coverage is also available on WatchESPN, in case you plan on surreptitiously watching the broadcast while you're working.
- In tandem with ESPN's coverage, the SEC Network will feature SEC-specific signing day coverage starting at 10 AM Eastern (also available online).
- SB Nation has a list of recruits and their estimated commitment times, and Dan Rubenstein will be hosting a live signing day special that you can watch right here. I'll be on around 1:25 to talk about the Vols, which will probably mean that I sound like Charlie Brown's teacher. Get excited!
- In addition, the Tennessee Athletic Department will broadcast a Vols Signing Day Show beginning at 7 AM Eastern, with interviews, features, and highlights. Tune your internet to UTSports.com.
I'm at work, how can I follow along without it being obvious that I'm shirking my responsibilities?
Great question! Keep your eyes and your commenting fingers locked here on Rocky Top Talk as we'll be following all the information throughout the day. If you haven't read the excellent positional preview pieces we've been writing, well, what are you waiting for? If you're also on twitter, follow @RockyTopTalk, @CobbWebbAttack (shameless recruiting writer plug), @Vol_Football, and @SBNationRecruiting for all the latest. ESPN accounts @RecruitingNation and @ESPNU will also be involved during the day for some exclusive (non-Vol) announcements.
I'm on a horrible conference call, do you have anything recruiting related I can read?
As a matter of fact, we do...
Which Vols commits should I be worried about flipping?
In order of probability of a decommitment: 4* JUCO CB Justin Martin, probably not (Texas A&M); 3* OG Venzell Boulware, probably not (Ohio State); 3* TE Kyle Oliver, almost certainly not, unless coaches pull his scholarship; and, 3* LB Austin Smith, almost certainly not (Florida). Of these four, Martin is probably the biggest concern because of his relationship with Aggies defensive coordinator John Chavis. If Boulware flips, it's probably because Tennessee is about to land another offensive line commitment who is taking his scholarship, but with Kendall Bussey decommitting and Drew Richmond on the board, it looks like the Vols are done with the 2015 class. Local commitment Jocquez Bruce has already agreed to blueshirt, forgoing an official visit to Tennessee and an in-home visit with the coaching staff.
Which uncommitted players are the Vols still targeting?
In order of probability of a commitment: 4* OT Drew Richmond, likely (Ole Miss and Tennessee) COMMITTED TO TENNESSEE; 4* OT Patrick Allen, unlikely (Georgia and Tennessee) COMMITTED TO GEORGIA; and, 3* OT Tyree St. Louis, unlikely (Miami and Tennessee). I suppose there's some infinitesimal chance that 4* ATH Jaason Lewis COMMITTED TO ASU or 4* Tennessee DB Rico McGraw will change his mind and decide to commit to the Vols, but there's also a chance you'll win the lottery or be crowned the Queen of Love and Beauty.
Who is definitely committing to the Vols today?
Who isn't committing to the Vols today?! But seriously, even with nine early enrollees, Tennessee will definitely sign:
5* DT Kahlil McKenzie SIGNED
4* OT Drew Richmond SIGNED
4* WR Preston Williams SIGNED
4* CB Micah Abernathy SIGNED
4* QB Sheriron Jones SIGNED
4* DE Darrell Taylor SIGNED
3* DT Quay Picou SIGNED
3* ATH John Kelly SIGNED
3* OG Zach Stewart SIGNED
3* LB Austin Smith SIGNED
3* CB Darrell Miller SIGNED
3* APB Vincent Perry BLUESHIRT
3* ATH Jocquez Bruce BLUESHIRT
- 3* P Tommy Townsend
2* LS Riley Lovingood3 SIGNED
How excited should I be?
Very. The 2015 class is shaping up to be even better than the 2014 class, and the current two-year recruiting run is the best Tennessee recruiting period since the late 1990s. We can only hope that the players who commit today have as much success as the 1995-1999 recruiting classes.
1. Note: signing a letter of intent does not guarantee admission to the school and recruits have occasionally been denied admission even with a signed NLI.↩
2. This doesn't include the 2 hour Signing Day Preview which begins at 5 AM.↩
3. Recruiting services almost never rate special teams players above 2 or 3 stars, which explains Lovingood's curiously low rating. He's supposed to be one of the best long snappers in the country, and is rated 7th at the position in the 247 Composite.↩