Tennessee was hoping to host Class of 2022 edge rusher James Pearce of Zebulon B. Vance High School in Charlotte, N.C., on July 31 for its “Rocky Top Palooza” event. Pearce initially was expected to accompany one of his teammates, Class of 2023 running back Daylan Smothers, in making the trip to Knoxville, but Pearce ultimately didn’t make the trip and has yet to receive an offer from the Vols.
Tennessee still is keeping a close eye on Pearce, though, and could decide to join the race for him at some point. All three predictions on the 247Sports Crystal Ball point to South Carolina, which extended an offer to him in June, as the favorite to land him. But Pearce doesn’t appear to be rushing to a decision, so there’s still time for the Vols to enter the picture and become a factor.
Moving to pass-rushers, Tennessee may get a pleasant surprise this weekend as James Pearce has indicated that he plans on a trip over from Charlotte for the game. Both he and Josh Josephs are at the top of the board for that coveted ‘Leo’ position.
Due to the Covid season last year, and the huge number of kids that didn't take part in camps at up by the services, I distrust the ratings of the major services more than ever. Also, the mess that Pruitt left hasn't gone away. They could focus on the "best of the best" and land one or two kids, or they can put in the work and trust their own evaluations and fill the class.