Unfortunately for Tennessee fans, this feels all too familiar. The Volunteers are 13 days away from playing their first game of the season, and they still don’t know if USC transfer Bru McCoy will be eligible to play.
Tennessee and McCoy have been waiting for the NCAA to make a ruling since the he joined the team back in the early summer. McCoy’s status is up in the air due to his now infamous USC-Texas flip flopping via the transfer portal.
It’s a situation that feels similar to Cade Mays and Aubrey Solomon, who both were eventually ruled eligible to play. Mays’ situation pushed into the season, while Solomon’s was resolved the week of the first game.
With Tennessee set to face Ball State on September 1st, time is getting thin.
“Obviously, getting him prepared, being able to rep him – all those things – you’d like that before you start your regular game-plan week, essentially seven days before kickoff,” Josh Heupel told reporters on Friday. “That’s best-case scenario where you’re able to work him and incorporate him and plan for what it’s going to look like when we run out of the tunnel.
“Our administration’s done everything that they possibly can. They’ve been great throughout the entire process, from the very beginning, and they’re still working as hard as they can to give him the opportunity to play.”
The former five-star athlete is a potential answer for Tennessee at receiver opposite of Cedric Tillman. McCoy has been working to get comfortable with the pace of the offense during camp after not playing football last season.
McCoy has two seasons of eligibility remaining.
Veteran Ramel Keyton would be the likely beneficiary if McCoy wasn’t able to go. A guy like Jimmy Calloway or even the trio of freshmen receivers could also see some added reps as well.
With game week fastly approaching, Josh Heupel needs an answer. We’ll see if he gets one in time. If he doesn’t, it’s on to plan B for the season opener.