Jordan Jenkins was one of the most heavily recruited prospects of the 2012 cycle. He considered Alabama, Florida, Auburn, Tennessee and Georgia before ultimately committing to the Bulldogs. But despite committing to Georgia, Jenkins said that his best visit was to Tennessee. And thanks to the gear loaned to him, (by rule, recruits cannot keep gear given to them on visits) Jenkins was able to experience what it is like to be a Tennessee football player on game day. Here's more from Jenkins' feature interview given to the AJC.
What was the most creative thing a college did to get your attention? "During my official visit to Tennessee, they gave me a whole jumpsuit to wear while I was there. I was dressed like I was a player before the game. If you didn't know who I was, you'd actually think I was a Tennessee football player. I had the adidas shoes, the adidas socks, the adidas shorts, the adidas shirt, the adidas sweats and the adidas jacket. I wore it in the pre-game meeting, during the game and after the game. I actually had a couple of people come up to me to ask me to autograph a ball or something that other Tennessee players had signed because they thought I was one, too ... No, we couldn't keep any of it. We had to give it all back ...Tennessee was the best official visit I had. I went out to a 5-star restaurant and I ate the most expensive thing on the menu. It was a great time over there."
This is a good example of a school thinking outside the box while playing within the rules. When prospects arrive on campus for an official visit, they are usually given a shirt or a jacket, as well a hat to wear on the trip. Schools are aware that fans will recognize prospects and attempt to sway the kids they recognize, and it's easy to spot a huge kid hanging out with the team in street clothes.
But instead of making Jenkins obvious, Tennessee focused on giving him the experience of playing for Tennessee. And that, combined with dinner at a five-star restaurant, was apparently enough to make the visit to Knoxville the best trip Jenkins took. Vols fans wish it would have been enough to sway Jenkins to Knoxville to help with the new 3-4 defense. Instead, he'll arrive in Athens on June 4.