Tennessee football coach Derek Dooley said Tuesday that Tennessee has been in contact with members of the Penn State football team.
“We’ve analyzed (Penn State’s) roster,” Dooley said, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel. “We’ve had some communication with some of the players.”
Dooley, who was speaking at a Rotary Club in Knoxvile, declined to give details on the players from Penn State. The entire Nittany Lions roster is eligible to transfer without penalty following the NCAA’s sanctions delivered to Penn State on Monday.
This process isn’t new to Tennessee as the Vols benefited from Southern California’s NCAA penalties in 2010. That’s when defensive lineman Malik Jackson decided to transfer from USC to Tennessee, where he played the last two seasons. Jackson was an All-SEC performer before he was selected by the Denver Broncos in April’s NFL Draft.
Dooley believes the Penn State situation is different from the one faced by USC, however.
“We were way ahead of every school (in the recruitment of Jackson),” Dooley said. “We don’t have the luxury of being out in fornt because of the enormity (of the Penn State situation).”
Tennessee also isn’t as desperate for immediate help as it was two years ago, Dooley’s first season in Knoxville. The Vols have an improved roster with more depth and experience. Dooley knows that, too, saying Tennessee can go “toe to toe with everybody on the schedule” this fall.