4-star Reggie Grimes sees Vols as 'viable option' for football future
Sitting in the front row on Saturday night, Ravenwood defender Reggie Grimes watched an undermanned Tennessee team put some a solid fight for the longest time against the No. 3 Georgia Bulldogs. He soaked up the atmosphere and listened to the coaches talk after the game about where they want to take the program.
"I can come in and play and play a lot early," Grimes said. "They have great kids with good character and good leadership. They just don't have a lot of depth. My class would help them stay in a lot of these ball games and help win a bunch."
The Vols led late in the first half before the Dawgs pulled away for a comfortable win. The final score was not an indication of how the game was played and Grimes is the first to acknowledge that.
"For a while there it was a ballgame," Grimes said. "It was a lot closer than people expected it to be going into the half. If they cut out a few errors and get a few more guys then they will be a formidable squad for sure."
And the chance to come in and play early and get after the quarterback is something that stands out to the in-state defender.
"That's definitely a positive," Grimes said. "That was their pitch. They need pass rushers. Guys that can get to the quarterback and that's what I do."
Much of Tennessee's staff knows Grimes and his family well. After all, Pruitt played with his dad in Tuscaloosa and members of the staff have spent time at Alabama.
"I know they will look out for me," Grimes said. "It's more of a family thing and that's a bonus. They will look out for me and they will have my back out of respect for my dad. If I go to Tennessee, that's something I'd be really confident in."
Tennessee is making a real conscious effort to pull the top players in this state for the 2020 class. They already have Cooper Mays and Keshawn Lawrence committed and they continue to work players like Tyler Baron, Jay Hardy, Omari Thomas, Chris Morris and the trio of linebackers at Whitehaven. Those kids talk and if it can work out to play together they want to make it happen.
"I'm closer with Key, but I talk to Tyler and Coop," Grimes said. "They talk to me about playing together. Me and Key grew up together. That's my brother since we were seven. He's committed to Tennessee and he tells me we should play together again. We haven't seen little league. That's something I can get behind because that's my brother. As far as that's concerned, I'm weighing that in my decision."
South Carolina, Alabama, Florida State, Ole Miss and Oklahoma join the Vols in the mix for the speedy pass rush specialist. As of now, he has no leader, but does say Tennessee offers certain things that give them positive momentum.
"I don't have anyone on top for me," Grimes said. "If I did then I'd be committed already. They are definitely in it. They are definitely a viable option because I can definitely see myself playing at the University of Tennessee.
"It's the competition in the SEC, playing for my home state because I'd like to put on for my home state and for Nashville which isn't too far away."
Rivals.com ranks Grimes as a 4-star defensive end in the class of 2020.