Elarbee offers Baylor School standout Brycen Sanders
In-state Baylor School offensive line standout Brycen Sanders picked up an offer from Tennessee this week. The 6-foot-5, 285-pounder is a 2023 prospect.
“I got the offer from coach [Glenn] Elarbee,” Sanders told Volquest. “It felt really good. I’m excited to get an offer from the state school that’s just a couple of hours away from me. It’s pretty special that they believe in me to produce for my state.
“Coach Elarbee is a great coach and that staff is impressive. So, it was really exiting and special for me.”
Sanders grew up in Nashville before moving to Chattanooga in fifth grade. He attended McCallie for the middle grades and then elected Baylor for high school.
Everywhere he looks, he sees orange.
“Everyone at my school are Tennessee fans, so everyone has really been excited about this offer and happy for me,” Sanders said. “They all want me to play for them.
“The fanbase is happy for me too and have been tweeting at me. They are crazy and enthusiastic. I love that – all good with me.”
But the connection dates back even further than just being an in-state prospect. Sanders’ father, Gary, roomed with Elarbee while both played for the Blue Raiders program at Middle Tennessee.
“Dad and coach Elarbee are really good friends. He tells me he is a really good person, coach and was a great player,” the prospect said. “Coach Elarbee was older, so my dad said he always looked up to him.
“The conversations are more friendly and not as much business as some coaches are. Even though I didn’t really talk to him much before he started recruiting me, he’s easy to talk to with that connection.”
The Volunteer State native has six offers to date. Aside from the Vols, fellow SEC foes Kentucky and Ole Miss have offered – as has Virginia Tech from the ACC.
“It’s been surreal so far. It’s been fun getting offers from high-caliber coaches who believe in me,” Sanders said. “The recruiting process has been really special so far.”
The offensive lineman spent his sophomore season slotted in the right guard position for Baylor School but anticipates a move to left tackle in the near future.
“The move outside should expand my game even more. I’ll have to work hard to get quicker against edge- rushers,” Sanders said. “Coaches tell me they like my run blocking and aggressive mentality. I just need to work on my pass blocking as time goes on.
“I think my game is pretty good, but I don’t think I’m close to where I can be. My football IQ is a lot better than some. I study and watch film a lot, and before I go into games, I know what I’m going to do and who I’m going to do it against. I think my aggressiveness sets me apart. I’m not going to stop until the whistle blows and sometimes even after.”
With two years left at the high school level, Sanders has time to develop his game. A state championship and wins over McCallie are the immediate goals in the seasons to come, but the prospect hopes to continue improving and to become a better person in the process.
Tennessee got in on the ground level and should be a factor down the line with the in-state ties and the family connection to Elarbee. Still, the offensive lineman is impressed initially with this staff’s offensive makeup.
“They are from UCF and have been together. I think they are going to be great,” Sanders concluded. “I’ve already spoke to coach Elarbee several times and look forward to continuing the relationship-building process.”