UPDATE: Jeremy Pruitt confirms the injury to Emmit Gooden. Pruitt told reporters that Gooden “would not be with us this year,” but noted that he had another year. He does still have a redshirt season available, so expect Gooden make an impact in 2020.
Pruitt said it was a torn ACL.
News: Jeremy Pruitt announces that Emmitt Gooden suffered a knee injury and "won't be with us this year."— GoVols247 (@GoVols247) August 7, 2019
"Emmitt is a guy that has another year. He'll continue to go to school and get ready to come back next spring and next fall."
A little over three weeks before Tennessee’s season opener against Georgia State, the Volunteers appear to have lost their top option at defensive tackle. According to Jesse Simonton at Volquest.com, Emmit Gooden could be lost for the season.
NEWS: Vols DL Emmit Gooden suffered a knee injury in practice yesterday, feared to be lost for season but team is still waiting on test results.— Jesse Simonton (@JesseReSimonton) August 7, 2019
Reporting with @AustinPriceless: https://t.co/4TjaqjAdDT
Would be big blow. Vols need Aubrey Solomon eligible more than ever now.
Gooden, a former Last Chance U star, signed with Tennessee as a part of Jeremy Pruitt’s initial recruiting class in 2018. The 6-3, 290 pound defensive lineman worked his way into the rotation last season, cracking the starting lineup against Vanderbilt at the end of the season.
The four-star JUCO prospect registered 33 tackles and seven tackles for loss, good for third on the team in 2018.
Gooden was set to anchor the defensive line in 2019, following the departures of Alexis Johnson, Shy Tuttle and Kyle Phillips. The injury now shifts more pressure towards guys like Greg Emerson, Savion Williams, Kingston Harris, Darel Middleton and Elijah Simmons.
Above all else, it makes the NCAA’s ruling on the Aubrey Solomon waiver that much more important. Tennessee now suddenly desperately needs Solomon to be eligible and ready to bring a veteran presence to the defensive line group. The former five-star defensive lineman appeared in just two games for Michigan last season before getting injured. He transferred to Tennessee back in December, but has yet to hear back from the NCAA about his eligibility to this point.
Expect Jeremy Pruitt to address the injury later today after practice.
This article will be updated.