6’2″ 240 pounds; Hometown: Nashville, Tenn.
An underrated aspect of Josh Heupel’s offense is how, when he has the option to do so, he can turn tight ends into star receivers who get postseason recognition. In 2017, Albert Okwuegbunam had 29 receptions for 415 yards, and his 11 receiving touchdowns were the most of any team on the Missouri Tigers. That’s a testament to Heupel.
Well, Tennessee football has a tight end who is capable of being an elite receiver but hasn’t had the chance yet. Princeton Fant was initially a running back for the Vols and converted to tight end in 2019. While learning the position, he backed up Dominick Wood-Anderson.
Last year, Fant emerged as the leading tight end for receiving, but his development at the position leading up to the season was cut short due to COVID, and he had to deal with a historically bad offense in the process. Still, the graduate of LaVergne High School in Rutherford County managed 12 catches for 108 yards and a touchdown.
This year, with Austin Pope forced to retire due to medical reasons, Fant will likely see a lot more action, and he’s in a system that will allow him to touch the ball a lot more. As a receiving tight end, that should garner him lots of recognition outside of Rocky Top.