Quick links:
 Latest Team Rankings
 Free Rivals Alerts
 Member Services
ShopMobileRadio RSSRivals.com Yahoo! Sports

May 4, 2009

Paige opts to turn the page and leave Tennessee

Rob Lewis
Rivals.com College Football
Associate Editor
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - An offseason that has seen plenty of attrition for the Tennessee football program saw more activity Monday with sophomore receiver Ahmad Paige announcing that he's transferring from the program now that the spring semester is over.

Paige, from Sterlington, La., arrived in Knoxville as a heralded prospect as part of a consensus top-five national recruiting class in 2007.

After two full years in the program and a spring practice under the new coaching staff, Paige had yet to secure a place in the receiver rotation.

"It's true, I'm leaving," Paige confirmed on Monday afternoon. "It's not anything negative as far as me and Tennessee or the new coaches. Playing time is part of it, but I really just feel like I need a new start. I've already spoken to Coach [Lane] Kiffin and we left everything on really good terms.

"I'm sad it didn't work out for me here, but I'm excited about getting a new start somewhere."

Paige acknowledged the prospects of playing time factored into his decision, but he's also dealt with more than his share of real-life tragedy.

"I've had some bad luck since I've been here, off the field more than on it," Paige said. "Playing time is part of it, but I really feel like I just need a change of scenery for my life and start over."

Paige, who redshirted in 2007 and didn't appear in a game last fall, never materialized into the playmaker he or Tennessee fans envisioned when the Vols won a fierce recruiting battle with USC to land him on National Signing Day.

Off the field and in the locker room, though, he was a popular figure - as much with the coaching staff as with the players.

"We had a good talk and everything was positive," Paige said of his final conversation with Kiffin. "He told me that he would release me without any restrictions because he felt like I was a good guy, didn't have any problems with academics or anything.

"He told me he'd help me find another school and that he was ready to give any coach who called him and asked about me a positive review. I don't have anything bad to say about Coach Kiffin or me leaving. Things just didn't work out for a lot of different reasons."

Paige becomes the ninth player to either voluntarily leave or be dismissed from the program since Kiffin arrived on the job in December.

Rob Lewis is the associate editor of VolQuest.com and covers both football and basketball. Lewis is in his eighth year on the basketball beat which is the longest tenure of any reporter covering the Vols.
Home | Latest Headlines | Recruit Search" | Commitments" | Targets" | Visit Dates" | The Wire

Talk about it in the
Latest NewsThe Wire | More
Still seeking answers
Ohio DT back on campus
Hoops search update
Hart needs 'showstopper' for show to go on
Dawson high on Vols after visit
Message Board Topics2601 fans online now
So, Cuonzo missed out on Mizzou, Tulsa & potentially Purdue
OT: Steak in Knoxville
Is it just me or does BigOrangeLawyer....
Witch. St. insider spoke too soon
Diamond DeShields transfering from UNC
The General's Quarters
The Place to Discuss Vol Basketball and Football
More boards:


Rivals.com is your source for: College Football | Football Recruiting | College Basketball | Basketball Recruiting | College Baseball | High School | College Merchandise
Site-specific editorial/photos VolQuest.com. All rights reserved. This website is an officially and independently operated source of news and information not affiliated with any school or team.
About | Advertise with Us | Contact | Privacy Policy | About our Ads | Terms of Service | Copyright/IP policy | Yahoo! Sports - NBC Sports Network

Statistical information 2014 STATS LLC All Rights Reserved.