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Cedric Tillman named preseason All-American by Phil Steele

NCAA Football: Tennessee at Alabama Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Following an out-of-nowhere explosion as a junior, Cedric Tillman has been named to Phil Steele’s All-American third team ahead of the 2022 season. Now a redshirt senior, Tillman is coming off of a 1,000+ season, something no Tennessee receiver had done since Justin Hunter in 2012.

Tillman caught 64 passes for 1,084 yards and 12 scores, emerging as a true No. 1 receiver after entering the season with just a handful of career receptions. Now he’s one of the best in the country, and he’s set to return for more as a redshirt senior in Josh Heupel’s second season.

Tillman was also named first-team All-SEC by Steele. Quarterback Hendon Hooker was named to the second-team, who returns to form a potentially potent duo in Knoxville.

Running back Jabari Small and tackle Darnell Wright landed on Steele’s third team, while guard Jerome Carvin cracked his fourth-team.

Defensively, Byron Young appeared on Steele’s All-SEC second team. Young came on late for Tennessee and is expected to deliver in a big way for Tennessee in 2022.

Linebacker Jeremy Banks also found the All-SEC second-team after stabilizing under the new coaching staff. He’ll now be looked to as a leader on this defense as a redshirt senior, and publications are taking notice.

Expect more preseason accolades as we creep closer to talkin’ season, where the SEC media and coaches will put out their official all-conference teams ahead of the 2022 season.