Five Vols Named to Preseason Coaches All-SEC Teams

Orange & White Nation

UT Athletic Department Release

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Tennessee had five players named to the 2020 Preseason Coaches All-Southeastern Conference football teams on Thursday, as announced by the league office.

Senior offensive lineman Trey Smith and senior placekicker Brent Cimaglia led the way as first-team selections. The sophomore duo of offensive lineman Wanya Morris and linebacker Henry To’o To’o were named to the second team while junior defensive back Bryce Thompson earned third-team honors.

UT’s five selections were its most since having eight players named to the preseason all-conference teams prior to the 2016 season. To view the full All-SEC preseason teams, click HERE.

For Smith, Thursday’s announcement added to an already impressive list of preseason accolades that includes multiple first-team All-America honors as well as being named to a handful of national award preseason watch lists. Smith was a first-team All-SEC selection by the media and coaches after anchoring the Vols’ offensive line in 2019. The Jackson, Tennessee, native also won the 2019 Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year Award and took home the inaugural Fritz Pollard Trophy after a dominant junior season. Smith, a potential first-round pick, decided to forego the 2020 NFL Draft to return to Tennessee for his senior season.

Cimaglia has also garnered some well-deserved preseason attention after one best seasons ever by a Tennessee kicker last year. The senior drilled 23 of his 27 field goal attempts last season, including two from 50-plus yards, to earn second-team All-SEC honors. Cimaglia also connected on all 35 extra point attempts and was 9-of-11 on kicks of 40 or more yards. The Nashville native was a 2019 Lou Groza Award semifinalist and was also named to the 2020 Lou Groza Award Preseason Watch List.

Morris will look to build on a solid freshman campaign that saw him earn Freshman All-SEC team honors as well as 247Sports True Freshman All-America recognition. The former 5-star recruit started 12 of UT’s 13 games at left tackle in 2019, helping the Vols close the season with six consecutive wins.

To’o To’o was one of the top freshman defensive players in the country last season and finished second on the team with 72 tackles, including five tackles for loss. His 72 tackles ranked second among SEC freshmen and fourth among FBS freshmen.

The Sacramento, California, native was named to the 2019 SEC All-Freshman team as well as Freshman All-America teams selected by The Athletic and 247Sports. With the departure of senior linebacker Daniel Bituli, To’o To’o is expected to take over as the leader of Tennessee’s defense this season. He has been named to preseason watch lists for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Butkus Award and Bednarik Award.

Thompson has been the Vols’ top corner for each of the past two seasons, racking up 66 tackles, six tackles for loss, two sacks, 15 pass breakups and six interceptions during his two years with the program. The Irmo, South Carolina, native did not allow a single touchdown in 325 coverage snaps last season according to PFF College. Thompson also tied the school record for interceptions in a game by picking off three passes in the first half of UT’s 30-7 win over UAB.

Tennessee kicks off its 2020 season in nine days with a visit to South Carolina. For the most up to date information on Tennessee Football, visit UTSports.com and follow the Vols on Twitter (@Vol_Football), Instagram (@Vol_Football) and Facebook (Tennessee Football).

2020 Tennessee Football Preseason Honors

Brent Cimaglia, Sr., PK
Lou Groza Award Watch List
All-SEC First Team (Athlon, Coaches, College Football News, PFF, Phil Steele)

Eric Gray, So., RB
Doak Walker Award Watch List
All-SEC Fourth Team (Athlon)

Jarrett Guarantano, Sr., QB
Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award Watch List

Velus Jones Jr., Sr., WR/RS
Paul Hornung Award Watch List
All-SEC Third Team (Athlon, Phil Steele)

Brandon Kennedy, Sr., OL
All-SEC Third Team (Phil Steele)

Cade Mays, Jr., OL
Outland Trophy Watchlist
Second-Team All-American (Sporting News)
All-SEC Second Team (Athlon, Phil Steele)

Wanya Morris, So., OL
All-SEC First Team (College Football News)
All-SEC Second Team (Coaches)
All-SEC Fourth Team (Phil Steele)

Josh Palmer, Sr., WR
All-SEC Fourth Team (Athlon)

Trey Smith, Sr., OL
Wuerffel Trophy Watch List
Outland Trophy Watch List
First-Team All-American (Associated Press, Athlon, CBSSports.com, Phil Steele, Sporting News)
Second-Team All-American (Walter Camp)
All-SEC First Team (Athlon, Coaches, College Football News, PFF, Phil Steele)

Bryce Thompson, Jr., DB
All-SEC Third Team (Coaches)
All-SEC Fourth Team (Athlon, Phil Steele)

Henry To’o To’o, So., LB
Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List
Butkus Award Watch List
Bednarik Award Watch List
All-SEC First Team (Phil Steele)
All-SEC Second Team (Athlon, Coaches)

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