New Tennessee Vols offensive line coach Glen Elarbee has an in-state recruiting connection that could pay dividends for UT during the 2023 recruiting cycle.

Elarbee recently extended an offer to 2023 offensive lineman Brycen Sanders.

Sanders, 6-foot-5/285 lbs from Chattanooga, TN (Baylor School), hasn’t been rated yet by the major recruiting services. But he’s already receiving plenty of attention from Power-5 programs.

The Tennessee native has offers from Kentucky, Ole Miss, and Virginia Tech.

While it’s obviously still very early in the recruiting process, I think it’s safe to say that Tennessee should be considered the favorite here.

That’s because of a unique connection that Elarbee has to Sanders.

Elarbee was actually roommates with Sanders’ dad when they both played football at Middle Tennessee.

“Dad and coach Elarbee are really good friends. He tells me he is a really good person, coach and was a great player,” said Sanders to VolQuest this week. “Coach Elarbee was older, so my dad said he always looked up to him.”

That connection, combined with the early offer from the Vols, should put Tennessee in the driver’s seat in Sanders’ recruitment.

Of course, this battle is far from over. Sanders will likely receive increased attention from SEC programs as recruiting restrictions relax over the next several months.

But for now, I feel like this is Tennessee’s battle to lose.

Featured image via Rivals