Recruiting Forum Football Talk IV

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Just hours before the start of the Tennessee baseball team's NCAA Super Regional against Notre Dame, the Vols received some big recruiting news that could improve their chances of competing for a championship again next year. Kansas shortstop transfer Maui Ahuna announced Friday morning that he has committed to Tennessee, adding one of the nation's top middle infielders to the Vols' projected lineup for next season.

Ahuna has been ranked among the top 10 prospects for the 2023 Major League Baseball draft by Baseball America, D1Baseball and Perfect Game. He was named a first-team All-Big 12 selection last month after finishing this season with a .396 batting average, eight home runs, 48 RBIs, 13 stolen bases and a .479 on-base percentage.

The sophomore from Hilo, Hawaii, ranked second in the Big 12 in batting average and fourth in on-base percentage. He also recorded 28 extra-base hits and scored 42 runs.

He revealed his decision with a simple post on his Twitter account: "Let's get it @Vol_Baseball," along with an orange emoji and a picture of him posing in a Tennessee uniform during his visit with the Vols this week.

Ahuna has been widely regarded as one of the top players available in the NCAA transfer portal and is expected to play a major role next year for the Vols, who likely will lose at least one starting middle infielder after this season. Junior shortstop Cortland Lawson and redshirt sophomore second baseman Jorel Ortega are both eligible to enter this year's MLB draft.

The 6-foot-1, 170-pound Ahuna, who is a left-handed hitter, arrived at Tennessee on Wednesday night to take a firsthand look at the Vols leading up to this weekend's Knoxville Super Regional. The first game between top-seeded Tennessee (56-7) and Notre Dame (38-14) is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. Eastern time Friday at Lindsey Nelson Stadium, with Game Two set for Saturday at 2 p.m. Eastern.

The winner of the best-of-three series will advance to the College World Series, which will be played June 17-27 at Charles Schwab Field Omaha in Omaha, Neb. The Vols are looking to return to the College World Series for the second consecutive season under fifth-year coach Tony Vitello.
With several key players from this year's team expected to leave for the MLB draft, Tennessee has been expected to be active in the transfer portal to fill some of the expected holes in its lineup going into next season. On Thursday, Vitello discussed his pitch to players the Vols might be pursuing in the transfer portal.

"I think when we’re going after a guy like (pitcher Chase) Dollander, there isn’t anyone that is disgruntled in that or has other thoughts or feelings," Vitello said, referring to Tennessee's sophomore pitcher, a former Georgia Southern transfer. "They like competition. They know competition will make them better as an individual and, if they want to win, then they know anyone that can help us win does just that.

"I think at the very least, we can’t guarantee guys things, but they will get better. Dollander was already pretty good, but when you reflect back on the year and things like that, there is certainly no assurance or no one in Vegas was betting he was going to be what he was this year. I think guys are assured to improve.

"All these kids want to play pro ball. I think we’ve got a unique thing with (assistant coach) Frank (Anderson)’s son and (assistant coach) Josh (Elander)’s experience in pro ball and other guys on staff. We want to get them ready to win for the Vols."
-Callahan
 

engineerVOL

Alpha-nerdy, ultra-hot beefcake
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She’ll say yes, I’m not stressed about that. My dad did say “what if Tennessee loses?” Because of how a loss ruins my day, he’s worried that I’ll let a loss ruin my proposal. Fair concern, but I’ll be a big boy for a day lol.

Idk, in this economy? I might never see that $530 again hahah. But I’m sure it’ll be worth it.
I spent about that on my proposal 13 years ago. Would do it all over again. No sweat. This sounds amazing.
 

bluegrasser

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Glad you made this decision.
I proposed to my wife when I was 23 and dirt poor. I was a grad student, but scraped together an equivalent amount to what you have described to go on a dinner cruise on the (no longer existing) Spirit of Jefferson paddlewheeler on the Ohio River.

I agonized for weeks about where I was going to come up with that money - and all the other things I could have used that for.

We’ve now been married 22+ years and STILL talk about that proposal night. Our kids love the story.

To paraphrase @Enki_Amenra , money comes and goes but the memories last a lifetime.

Good luck!!!
 
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