Our inbox is absolutely slammed with emails and we're probably going to have to bone up and pay for unlimited bandwidth for the site because for some reason, within the last 48 hours, this place has gone nuts.
We only have a second for a quick post based on an email that was recently sent to us.
My name is Daniel Lewis and I am a TN alum and writer for www.tnvarsity.com. I noticed back in March that you asked for a site with a breakdown of TN's roster so here you go: http://www.ericspcrepair.com/lwsvol/UT_Roster_Class.html I agree with the principle of your site, I think schools such as Alabama and Auburn have intentionally oversigned with the intent of "nudging" some fringe players out in order to assure having the best 85 man roster possible every year, and that this is not illegal, but it is a loophole that the NCAA needs to close. However, I venture to say that the consequences of not oversigning can be quite detrimental when you get in a situation like Tennessee is in currently. That roster I sent you reveals 77 scholarship players, and that number may even be higher than what Tn puts on the field in the fall as a few incoming recruits are still resolving Clearinghouse/academic issues (DT John Brown / DB Dave Clark for example). So essentially TN will be playing with scholarship numbers that resemble teams in the past that have been found guilty of major NCAA violations, partly because they have not oversigned the way other SEC schools have. Hopefully this adds some data and insight to your website.
Thanks for the email Daniel - we did a brief post on Tennessee's situation earlier, here, and it appears that we are on the same page. There is no question that Tennessee will be playing short-handed this year, it will also be interesting to monitor how Dooley recruits over the next couple of years.
His situation is a little different than Saban's in that he will have roster room to take a legit full class of 25 next year and may be able to get 3 more to come in early and back count in order to get the numbers back. And, as long as he has plenty of room under the 85 max there really isn't a problem with any of that. The problem comes when you only have 19 slots open and you still sign 29 guys and you do that 3 years in row - that is when this becomes a problem.
This is going to be very interesting because Dooley was a recruiting coordinator under Saban while he was at LSU.
Great stuff and thanks for sharing with the rest of us.