Hand it to new Tennessee head football coach Jeremy Pruitt: As soon as he saw Jordan Young’s highlight reel, he extended him an offer. It just took a long, long time before he saw the tape.
And that’s precisely what is so baffling about Young’s extremely delayed recruiting. Despite being a Class 6A 100-meter hurdles champion, despite standing 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds with an even longer wingspan, despite Young producing an otherworldly 1,562 yards and 17 touchdowns through the air as a senior, not a single major conference Division I school offered him a scholarship. Not one.
Until Sunday, that is, when Tennessee came calling and, potentially, jump started Young’s recruiting. The No. 190 overall recruit in the country, per 247Sports, Young was so desperate for recruiting attention he literally put his own phone number and email in his end of season Hudl highlight video. It’s still there, you can see it in the video above.
That’s what athletes who are desperate for attention do, not what athletes who are ranked as four-star prospects do.
And yet, here was Young, holding scholarship offers from Division I FCS Coastal Carolina, Valdosta State and West Virginia State before Tennessee came along. It all begs the question of where the sudden attention was the prior two seasons, right?
The answer to that speaks volumes about recruiting’s reliability on statistics. While Young scored 17 touchdowns as a senior, he apparently had just one as a junior, per this profile by SB Nation.
Still, a track state champion who also lines up as a receiver on the football field? In Georgia, one of the talent-rich states in the nation in both sports? How did no one catch wind of Young’s potential and take a longer look?
Seriously, go look at those highlights again. They’re stunning. They might be the most impressive single-season receiving highlights in the entire class. They’re definitely top five.
What does all this mean? It means that Tennessee may be getting itself a true star. Or perhaps someone else will. Young has yet to commit, South Carolina is reportedly sniffing around and once a couple SEC programs go in after a previously unknown recruit, others usually aren’t far behind.
Wherever he does end up, Young is sure to be motivated to prove he’s a game changer at the highest level. Just ask all the poor Georgia defensive backs who tried to cover him in 2017.