The Tennessee Vols haven’t been very active in the NCAA transfer portal so far this offseason.

That’s mostly because Tennessee is being selective in the wake of possible scholarship reductions (the feeling is that UT self-imposed massive scholarship reductions over the last year in the hopes of moving past the NCAA investigation that has plagued the program since late 2020).

I understand what the Vols are trying to do — even though I don’t think it’s wise to placate the impuissant NCAA. They want to get this investigation (and potential penalties) over as quickly as possible.

But that shouldn’t stop Tennessee from making at least a few additions to their roster via the transfer portal — especially on the defensive side of the ball (the Vols have added three players from the portal so far, all on offense, and one player, quarterback Navy Shuler, is not a scholarship player).

One specific player that Tennessee should be heavily targeting right now is Georgia defensive back Latavious Brini, who entered the portal earlier this month.

Brini is a former three-star recruit from Florida who signed with Georgia during the 2017 recruiting cycle. He started 11 games at safety for the Bulldogs in 2021 and totaled 38 tackles and eight pass breakups.

The Vols are extremely thin at defensive back, especially with Alontae Taylor and Theo Jackson moving on to the NFL after solid careers.

For now, though, it doesn’t appear that Tennessee is in the mix for Brini.

Arkansas, Louisville, Mississippi State, and Texas are the top suitors so far for Brini, who has one year of eligibility remaining.

There’s no reason that UT shouldn’t be involved here. They have an obvious need at defensive back and Brini is a veteran player who could provide immediate help in the secondary for the Vols.

This is a prime opportunity for Tennessee to flex its NIL muscle and bring a key player from the transfer portal to Knoxville.

We recently saw Texas jump in at the last minute to steal Wyoming wide receiver Isaiah Neyor from the Vols.

Tennessee should try to do something similar to land Brini.

If the Vols are going to improve in 2022, they’re going to need to add some depth on defense via the transfer portal. That hasn’t happened yet. This is a big opportunity that Tennessee can’t afford to waste.

Featured image via Calvin Mattheis/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK