After collecting scholarship offers from more than a dozen schools in less than two months, Savion herring completed his whirlwind recruiting this week by traveling to Tennessee for his fifth and final official visit. He returned home on Thursday knowing he would be joining the Vols in a few days.
The sophomore offensive lineman from Monroe College in New Rochelle, NY announced Thursday afternoon that he has signed for Tennessee, giving the Vols a late addition to their 2022 recruiting class. He also made official visits to Kansas, Syracuse, USF and Middle Tennessee before choosing Tennessee over Kansas and deciding to continue his collegiate career with the SEC.
Kentucky, South Carolina and Nebraska were among the other teams to show interest in the 6ft 4.5, 325lb Herring, who also received bids Missouri, Iowa, Connecticut, Akron, Toledo, Kent, Buffalo, Temple and Old Dominion since March.
Herring said he plans to return to Tennessee in time to begin first-session summer classes next week. Before announcing his decision publicly, he told GoVols247 that he was convinced of the idea of playing for the Vols mainly because of the coach Josh HeupelEmployee.
“The coaches really feel like family,” Herring said. “I spoke to the (current players) and the guys said, ‘Pretty much what you see is really what you get’ and they said that’s not even a lie and that’s not crap. You just shoot right at it.”
Herring said he has three years to play at least two remaining seasons. He said he is currently applying to have his 2019 season at Iowa Central Community College in Dodge City, Iowa counted as a redshirt year, which could give him three seasons left.
He appeared in five games last season at Monroe College, where he transferred after spending just one semester at Iowa Central. Monroe did not compete during the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Herring, a former Irvington (NJ) High School standout, committed to Cincinnati in June 2018 as he entered his senior year of high school, but academics forced him to take the junior college route.
Herring said nothing about his official visit to Tennessee was “too surprising, but the facilities are really nice.” However, his decision related more to the people he encountered there, including the offensive coach Glen Elarbee and other employees of the Vols.
“Everyone on the staff — assistant,[graduate assistants]or something like that — everyone was just really great,” Herring said. “They definitely have something special about cooking, so it will be exciting to see this season.
“Everything went exactly as I imagined. And then if I only go to one SEC school, they’re all pretty much the same. It’s really the people that make the difference and that was pretty good.”
Tennessee coaches have told Herring he will have an opportunity to fight for early game time on the Vols’ offensive line.
“They said there are some positions that aren’t official, so he said there are some jobs up for grabs,” he said. “[Elarbee]said it’s not going to be easy, but I have to keep up, and I said I’m fine with that.”
Herring said Tennessee had talked about potentially playing him as a guard. But the Vols were impressed with his length, which could allow him to get a glimpse of tackle.
“I mean, when they took the measurements on me in terms of height, weight and arm length, they were surprised,” he said. “My arms were 85 inches long, so they said, ‘You have the potential to play guard and tackle regardless of about the height difference because your arms are extremely long.’ He said he could take me to different places and check.
“It’s like 50-50. They don’t really know (my position) yet.”
One of Herring’s friends, senior linebacker from Tennessee Juwan Mitchell, served as his player-host during his official visit to Knoxville, which began Tuesday morning. Herring said he also spent time with Vol’s senior offensive lineman Jerome Carvin.
“He just gave me more feedback on how things would be when I got there,” Herring said, recalling his conversations with Carvin. “He said if you work hard and you take care of the team and you’re going to be focused and you’re going to be true to yourself and stuff like that, then you’re going to be fine.”
With his rapid recruitment now behind him, he said he looks forward to returning to Tennessee soon to officially start the Vols.
“I’ll sign up next week,” Herring said. “The ball rolls super, super fast.”