Elarbee, Vols taking notice in athletic OT Wilkin Formby
An offensive lineman in the 2023 class Tennessee has upped its efforts with of late is Northridge standout Wilkin Formby.
The four-star was offered by the Tennessee coaching staff back in fall and offensive line coach Glen Elarbee is channeling in on the Tuscaloosa, Ala. native.
“He likes length. It seems like a lot of teams are trying to expand with guys over 6-foot-6 and want more length,” Formby said of the assistant coach. “A lot of guys who are that size aren’t always athletic. I feel like he believes that I’m one of those guys who are athletic.”
The Vols love the outlook at offensive tackle for the 6-foot-8, 300-pound athlete.
“It’s going well,” the prospect said of the relationship building process with Tennessee. “We talk on a weekly basis.”
Formby was on campus for UT’s close loss to Ole Miss in October. It was the first time the prospect saw Tennessee in person and the game day atmosphere was obviously a sticking point.
“The fans showed a lot of good energy and stuck with it the whole game. Win or lose, it’s a great atmosphere with great fans,” the offensive lineman said. “It’s exciting because I feel like every week they played, they developed more into themselves. I feel like they are about to have a great season.”
Formby has a busy spring coming up. He’s already been to Oklahoma and has plans to visit Alabama, Auburn, Ole Miss and Florida. But getting back to Tennessee is a must and those plans have been in the making for quite some time.
“I have a date set in stone for when I’m coming back up. It’ll be likely a spring practice,” Formby said. “I’ve been wanting to get up there. I wanted to get up there for Junior Day but wasn’t able to travel that weekend.
“I do look forward to going up there and checking out coach Elarbee in the film room and to see how he runs practices and coaches. That’s where it is most important.”
The prospect is not short on suitors as 30 programs have extended offers with Florida and Michigan State coming in earlier this month. It’ll be a lengthy decision-making process for the athletic tackle, and one that likely won’t come to fruition anytime soon.
“I plan on narrowing down the list at the end of my spring training – going into the summer,” Formby said. “By the end of the summer, I’d like to make my decision, if that’s the most convenient. It’s whenever the best timing is with a decision like that.”
As he continues to train, with an emphasis on speed and strength, over the next few months – it’s going to be a critical period filled with visits. This spring will be telling of which programs will make the shortened lists and which ones will eventually host him for an official visit.
But Tennessee is in this one and the Vols will look to have a good showing when the four-star returns for a spring practice.
“I feel like it’s a new staff and they have a lot to bring to the table,” Formby said of the Vols. “This [past] season, they showed good improvement from how Tennessee has been. I think it’s definitely a growing program that here in a few years will be a serious [contending] program.”
Formby is tabbed as the 33rd-best offensive tackle in the class, the 22nd-ranked prospect out of Alabama and owns a Rivals Rating of 5.8.