published Sunday, April 28th, 2013

Vols' 11 football commitments for 2014

KNOXVILLE — The calendar still says April, but Tennessee already has 11 players committed to its 2014 football recruiting class.

WR Neiko Creamer

Elkton, Md. (Eastern Christian Academy)

6-4, 222

Stars: 3 (247sports, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Boston College, Syracuse and West Virginia, among others.

Skinny: The jumbo receiver is the son of former Tennessee defensive back Andre Creamer, a four-year letterman (1984-87).

TE Daniel Helm

Chatham, Ill. (Glenwood)

6-4, 220

Stars: 4 (Rivals, Scout), 3 (247sports)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Ole Miss, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Arkansas, Mississippi State, Virginia Tech and others.

Skinny: The nation's sixth-ranked tight end and No. 201 overall prospect per Rivals, Helm visited Tennessee earlier this month and had trimmed his list to Michigan, Ole Miss and the Vols.

RB Jalen Hurd

Hendersonville (Beech)

6-3, 230

Stars: 5 (247sports), 4 (ESPN, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, LSU, Vanderbilt, Michigan, Ohio State, Notre Dame, Stanford and others.

Skinny: Just three months after telling the Times Free Press he had no relationship with Tennessee's previous staff, Hurd became the crown jewel of the Vols' class. The state's top-ranked prospect, he ran for a state-record 3,357 yards, scored 43 touchdowns and delivered a 394-yard, seven-touchdown performance in December's Class 5A title game.

WR Kameel Jackson

Arlington, Texas (Blinn Junior College)


Stars: Unrated

Who else wanted him: Signed with Oklahoma in 2011.

Skinny: A former four-star recruit, Jackson, who committed on Saturday, left the Sooners after catching 12 passes for 165 yards as a freshman, and transferred to Louisiana-Monroe before heading to junior college for academic reasons.

S Todd Kelly

Knoxville (Webb School)

6-1, 190

Stars: 4 (247sports, ESPN, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Ohio State, Clemson, Florida State, UCLA, Southern California, Washington, Louisville and others.

Skinny: A national recruit (with offers from big-name programs across the nation) in the Vols' back yard, Kelly is one of the nation's top-rated safeties, the son of the former Tennessee defensive end and 1992 team captain of the same name and the brother of an Alabama cheerleader.

WR Lawrence Lee

Pensacola, Fla. (West Florida Tech)

5-10, 163

Stars: 4 (ESPN), 3 (247sports, Scout), 2 (Rivals)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Missouri, Memphis and others.

Skinny: Likely a slot receiver at Tennessee, the under-the-radar prospect recently took visits to Alabama and Auburn and totaled 109 catches for 2,238 yards and 28 touchdowns in his sophomore and junior seasons.

RB Treyvon Paulk

Alpharetta, Ga. (Milton)

5-9, 200

Stars: 4 (ESPN), 3 (247sports, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Ole Miss, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Louisville, West Virginia, South Florida, Wisconsin, TCU, North Carolina, California and others.

Skinny: From the same high school as two 2013 targets (defensive end Carl Lawson and tailback Peyton Barber) who went elsewhere, the all-purpose back became the Vols' second running back in the class when he committed the day after Hurd.

CB D'Andre Payne

Washington, D.C. (Friendship Collegiate Academy)

5-9, 172

Stars: 4 (247sports, ESPN, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Georgia, LSU, Vanderbilt, Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, Virginia, Stanford and others.

Skinny: Payne proved to be one of the best players in the nation's capital at H.D. Woodson last season (four interceptions and four punt-return touchdowns) and transferred to Friendship, a talent-producing program with at least three other coveted 2014 prospects.

OL Coleman Thomas

Max Meadows, Va. (Fort Chiswell)

6-6, 298

Stars: 3 (247sports, ESPN, Rivals, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia and others.

Skinny: Versatile enough to play any position on the line, Thomas is the first commitment in an extremely vital offensive-line class for the Vols, who could lose five of their top six after this season.

ATH Vic Wharton

Nashville (Independence)

6-0, 177

Stars: 4 (ESPN, Rivals), 3 (247sports, Scout)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, North Carolina and others.

Skinny: The nephew of former Tennessee basketball player Brandon Wharton played his freshman season at Knoxville Catholic, built a relationship with Tennessee's coaches while they were at Cincinnati, became the first commitment of the class on Christmas Day and now is an active recruiter, both on Twitter and his own phone, for the Vols' class.

TE Ethan Wolf

Minster, Ohio (Minster)

6-6, 240

Stars: 4 (Scout), 3 (247sports, ESPN, Rivals)

Who else wanted him: Offers from Arkansas, Kentucky, Michigan State, Indiana, Minnesota, Illinois, Purdue, Nebraska, Pittsburgh and others.

Skinny: Rated the nation's No. 7 tight end by Scout, Wolf has a good frame and good hands, and he caught 43 passes for 580 yards and 10 touchdowns as a junior.

about Patrick Brown...

Patrick Brown has been the University of Tennessee beat writer since January 2011. A native of Memphis, Brown graduated from UT in May of 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Electronic Media and worked at the Knoxville News Sentinel for two years on the sports editorial staff and as a freelance contributor. If it’s the NBA, the NFL or SEC football and basketball, he’s probably reading about it or watching it on TV. Contact him ...

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