One of the Tennessee Vols‘ top 2024 recruiting targets thinks UT head coach Josh Heupel is a bit different than other college football head coaches.
Four-star offensive tackle Kam Pringle, 6-foot-7/330 lbs from Dorchester, SC, recently spoke to VolQuest about his recruitment and he had some positive/unique things to say about Heupel.
Pringle noted that Heupel isn’t about clichés and sales pitches like a lot of other college football head coaches.
“Coach Heupel isn’t cliche like every other head coach,” said Pringle. “He told me everything about campus and asked me if there’s anything I wanted to know. He told me about all of the traditions and the facts about the campus. Just talking to him was more about common conversation than it being all about football. I like that because it was more so about getting to know him as a person other than him just telling me to come play for him.”
After dealing with a lifetime’s worth of clichés during the Butch Jones era, this has to be refreshing for Vols fans to hear.
It also lines up with what former Vols offensive lineman Ramon Foster, who spent 11 seasons in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers, told A to Z Sports about Heupel last fall during an appearance on the Big Orange Podcast.
Former Vol and current @1045TheZone morning show host Ramon Foster joined us on the Big Orange Podcast a couple of weeks ago and gave us his take on meeting Josh Heupel and how he compares to Tennessee’s previous head coach pic.twitter.com/8Q7fFTRUd4— zach ragan (@zachTNT) December 1, 2021
Heupel is the only SEC head coach who played college football at a big-time level and was in the national spotlight for a couple of years. Heupel led Oklahoma to a national championship and finished second in Heisman Trophy voting (to former Florida State quarterback and former Vols assistant Chris Weinke).
The Tennessee head coach understands better than anyone what kind of pressure these kids are under when they get to college. And that helps him connect with recruits in a unique way that other coaches can’t (not even Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, who played for the Bulldogs in the 90s).
Heupel doesn’t have to rely on sales pitches, clichés, and empty promises. All he has to do is be authentic and he’ll win his fair share of recruiting battles.
Featured image via USA TODAY Sports