With Darrin Kirkland Jr. retiring early due to injury, Tennessee football was going to spend this offseason looking for a guy to start alongside Daniel Bituli at inside linebacker. And despite Quavaris Crouch being the early enrollee, Henry To’oto’o, a surprise four-star commit from California on National Signing Day, brought lots of hype to fall camp.
We didn’t hear a ton about him in practice, but numerous services projected him as a potential freshman All-American this season. Still, in addition to Crouch, To’oto’o competed with Will Ignont, Solon Page III, J.J. Peterson and Shanon Reid, all standout linebackers and two of whom were first-teamers in the spring.
Well, it looks like To’oto’o has worked his way into that unit. Monday’s depth chart had him in competition with Reid to start at the other inside linebacker spot alongside Bituli, who may be replaced by Ignont on Saturday as he cleans up an injury. But he was ahead of Peterson, Page and Crouch, which is a huge deal.
Given that fact, considering he was only around for fall camp, To’oto’o is clearly developing fast. And he obviously has a ton of potential at 6’2″ 232 pounds. So that type of love from the coaches will likely result in him seeing the field early, and it’s all due to a huge impact he made in fall camp.