BREAKING: Vols land versatile cornerback Damarius McGhee
The offer came in months ago for Tampa defensive back Damarius McGhee. The groundwork had been laid to land the versatile cornerback who shines as a returner on special teams. But it was recently that Tennessee showed they are more than just football minds and a program. They showed that when they talk about family, they mean it and that's whey McGhee committed to Tennessee on Thursday afternoon.
"My mom loved coach Pruitt and coach Ansley," McGhee said. "They reached out when we lost my grandmother and checked on us. I told her I wanted to go to Tennessee and she said that was the decision that she would have made so that made me feel good about my decision."
The relationships that McGhee made with Jeremy Pruitt and Derrick Ansley made a huge impression on him and his family. There were zoom meetings and talks on the phone. That left a feeling of McGhee getting his potential realized in Knoxville.
"I could feel myself playing for coach Pruitt," McGhee said. "When they offered me they wouldn't stop. They were always recruiting me and my entire family. I like their style. I did a lot of meeting stuff with hem and I liked that."
This recruitment has been one that Ansley has spent a lot of time on and it's a relationship that McGhee has cherished. When he called Ansley on Thursday morning, the excitement was clear in his voice and in Ansley's reaction.
"He's a real one," McGhee said. "He was excited when I called him. I was like I want to commit and he was was crazy excited. It was funny. I just know he will take care of me up there. I was supposed to take an official and it hadn't happened because Covid. It's made it hard, but I feel like I have a good peace with my decision."
So what does McGhee do well on the field? He loves to play physical and use his athleticism.
"I'm a man to man corner," McGhee said. " I like press and I like to get my hands dirty. Anything that my team needs I do it. I love special teams. I feel like schools kick it away from me, but I feel like if they kick to me it's a touchdown every time."