When a program signs two players with a remarkably similar skill set, the odds are that one of them will turn out to be a star, especially when they are both as highly rated as Justin Hunter and Ted Meline. While Meline may not have all the height that Hunter has, he is also very thin coming into his college career. That has yet to hold Meline back on the football field as wherever he has been, Meline has been ultra successful and he hopes to continue that trend during his time in Knoxville.
Meline, one of the eight early enrollees has been on campus for over a month now and it sounds as if he is already bulking up and looking more and more like a college ready player. Having the opportunity to prepare himself for spring ball and fall camp by being on campus early and being a part of the strength and conditioning program can only help the talented athlete from Miami, Florida.
Meline became a part of the Tennessee recruiting class back in September and despite the rumors that he was looking around, he stuck with his commitment and showed up on campus just after Christmas, ready to go to work and get a head start. The 6-foot-2, 175 pound Meline is a terror on the long ball as he possesses top notch straight line speed that allows for him to create separation between himself and the nearest defender. What Hunter has over Meline in height, Meline has over Hunter in top end speed. The two of them, along with the all around talent of Rogers and the size of Matt Milton make this perhaps UT’s greatest wide receiver haul in a long, long time.
Meline moved around during high school and wound up at three different high schools during his high school career, but he managed to keep his grades on track and ahead of schedule. After leaving Booker T. Washington he was able to graduate early from North Miami High School after starring at Westlake Prep in 2008.
Here is ESPNU and Scouts, Inc’s take on the ESPN three star prospect…
Meline is an extremely talented prospect who competed as a junior at a lower classification school and will get the opportunity to really up his game as a senior. He also has experience as a run-first quarterback and he runs extremely well for a player with his height. Has a lean, slender build and he must add bulk and strength. Is quick and displays good change-of-direction skills. Possesses long arms and a big wingspan to shield defenders. Is a bigger target with soft hands. Is a very smooth, fluid athlete that can accelerate and shows a second gear to run by defenders, but also be a factor after the catch. Looks to have big hands and can pluck on the move and use his long arms to extend and bring down jump balls. His open-field run skills are very impressive and he possesses a slashing style with the ability to cut and change directions well with little wasted motion. While Meline may be very talented with excellent measurables and speed, he is also extremely raw and must become a sharp, polished wide receiver with knowledge of how to attack coverage, feel it around him, locate zones and work to get open. He does not look to have an established foundation of the position yet. From a coaching standpoint, he is a guy you’d love to get your hands on because he has all the green talent that needs to be molded and developed. Overall, Meline is a guy that needs to be tracked and we expect he will see an increase in attention, especially as a senior. Upside is extremely high.
With Meline having moved around so much, he never had a coach that was able to mold him and develop him into a well rounded player. He has always had superior athleticism, even in South Florida, but having a solid coach work with him for an extended period of time is what will benefit him the most. Being in Knoxville early may help him more than anyone in this class as it will help him work on some technique mechanics before hitting the field in the spring and then the fall. Meline may have the most untapped potential of anyone in the class as he is still very raw, but he is someone that Vols’ fans should watch very carefully as time goes on. If he is able to soak up everything, he has the potential to become a breakout superstar for the Tennessee Volunteers.