KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — One of the biggest question marks heading into fall camp for the Tennessee Volunteers is who is going to step up and be a playmaker in the wide receiver room outside of Cedric Tillman.
Tillman is a known commodity who led the team in receptions (64), yards (1,081) and touchdowns (12) last season. Here are a few guys who could be on Hendon Hooker’s radar in the passing game.
Hyatt has a strong freshman season but fell out of favor with the coaching staff last year. He’s had a change of attitude and work ethic and is primed for a break out season. Hyatt added between 10-15 pounds of muscle and will be a much more physical threat in 2022.
What Heupel said about Hyatt:
“Even in the middle part of last year, his focus and attention to detail, he understood that it needed to change. He started making those changes. Dramatically different from the time that we got back in January. We talked earlier about guys who have changed their bodies. He has added a ton of size, strength and maturity to his frame. I think that’s gained a lot of confidence for him and how he plays with a physical presence. That can be in 1-on-1 matchups. It can be blocking on the perimeter. It can be the way he presents himself and finishes plays when he has the ball in his hands, too. All of those factors give him the ability to have a big year for us this year.”
The freshman from Alabama has shined so far during fall camp. He’s undersized at 5’10 160 lbs. but what he lacks in size he makes up for with raw speed. White is quick to get off the line of scrimmage and uses his hands well on defenders. He has the speed to separate from defensive backs.
What Heupel said about White:
“(Squirrel) is not slow, that’s for sure. Squirrel is competitive, really smart and mature in the way that he handles himself in the building, in the meeting room and physically taking care of his body. His ability for the game not to be moving too fast—really almost from day one—in the way that he has handled what we do offensively. He needs to have a great camp for us and I believe that he will. He is truly fearless. He’s not the biggest guy, but he is fearless. He is going to stick his face in any physical situation that he needs to.
McCoy is a transfer from USC who hasn’t been cleared by the NCAA yet. He’s been participating in fall camp and has looked the part of an impact receiver. McCoy has great size at 6’3 220 lbs. and has great hands. He brings a bevy of experience on the college level playing in 6 games for USC in 2020. He recorded 21 catches for 236 yards and 2 touchdowns.
What Heupel said about McCoy:
Bru is big, strong and long out on the perimeter. He’s learning how to play in our offensive system and how to play from the whistle of the previous snap to the snap of the next one. For him, I think he has gained a much better understanding of that throughout the course of the summer. The first couple of weeks of June are so dramatically different than by the time we got to July with him. He is a guy who has played college football and competed at a high level. That maturity is something that is an advantage for him in coming here and transitioning to our football program.”