2014 Tennessee Volunteers Recruiting: Talking With Derek Barnett


Nov 10, 2012; Knoxville, TN, USA; A general view of the Tennessee Volunteers logo on the field prior to the game against the Missouri Tigers at Neyland Stadium. Missouri defeated Tennessee 51-48 in quadruple overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee is currently ranked 4th in the nation in the 2014 recruiting rankings (Rivals). Coach Butch Jones has nine commitments so far, with the possibility of a tenth on Wednesday.

The Orange and White game is just a few days away with spring practice coming to a end. The Vols are expecting to see many of the 2014 recruits there to take in the game including Derek Barnett.

Barnett is a three-star Tight end/Defensive end (Rivals) out of Brentwood Academy in Brentwood, Tennessee. He stands 6’3″ and 275 pounds. Barnett is a great blocker and has the ability to escape down field and catch the ball very well. He’s also a great pass rusher and has the speed to get to the quarterback.

I caught up with him on twitter (@dbarnett25) Tuesday evening and got to speak with him late night for a few questions.

Jonah: Do you have a top 3 list of schools right now?

Barnett: No three schools right now, but I plan to narrow it down in the summer.

Jonah: What coach has recruited you at Tennessee?

Barnett: Coach Elder, coach Stripling, coach Knight and coach Jones.

Jonah: What made you decide to attend the Orange and White spring game over the other schools spring games this weekend?

Barnett: I enjoyed my first visit and they have been recruiting me hard.

Jonah: While making your decision of what school you are going to attend, what are the major factors you take into consideration about each school?

Barnett: I want to feel comfortable at the school I’m going to. I also will look at the relationships I’ve built with people involved with the school. I want to be surrounded by nice people.

Jonah: Being from Nashville have you always had interest in the Vols?

Barnett: No, I was an Ohio State fan

Jonah: You play tight end and defensive end which position do you like to play more? why?

Barnett: I enjoy playing both. To be honest I can’t really decide. I love hitting the quarterback on defense. On offense I enjoy blocking and having the ball in my hands. I don’t have a preference, but leaning more towards defensive line.

Jonah: What is your goal in the future where ever you chose to go to school?

Barnett: My goal is to continue to better my craft as a football player and just as much as a person . I also want to compete for championships at the college level.

Jonah: How would you describe your playing style?

Barnett: Big, athletic, and physical guy who can play multiple positions.

Jonah: What do you look forward to the most saturday at the Orange and White game in Knoxville?

Barnett: I look forward to getting to know coach Jones better. I also look forward to being around some of the players so I can continue to get a feel for the school.

Jonah: How would you describe Tennessee football to someone?

Barnett: I would describe Tennessee Vol football as a team who has gone through struggles but who is on the uprise to competing high in the South Eastern Conference.

For more on the 2014 Tennessee Volunteers recruiting class you can follow along on Twitter @AllforTennessee @Jonah_Byrd