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Uncertainty swirls around DeAnthony Arnett’s transfer from Vols

DeAnthony Arnett, Jonathan Bostic, Cody Riggs AP

This much appears to be certain: DeAnthony Arnett will be transferring from the Tennessee football program to be closer to his sick father in Michigan.

The when and where, however, remains up in the air.

According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, the fact that Arnett has spent less than a year with the Vols — he signed his Letter of Intent in early February — means it may be in his best interests to stay with the Vols through spring practice before transferring.  If the wide receiver were to leave prior to spending a year at the school, his appeal for a waiver that would allow him to play immediately at a new school instead of sitting out a transfer year would likely be denied.

The where of his ultimate transfer destination is very much uncertain as well.  Arnett’s father lives in Saginaw and his health is in decline because of diabetes, a couple of heart attacks and multiple surgeries.  Arnett. a four-star member of UT’s 2011 recruiting class and the No. 12 WR in the country, would like to transfer to either Michigan State or Michigan to be closer to his dad and still play at a BcS conference.

The only problem with that? Arnett told‘s Joe Schad in an email that the Vols will only release him from his scholarship to MAC schools.

“Coach [Derek] Dooley, myself or anybody doesn’t know what the future holds for my father,” Arnett said in the email. “I feel that I represented the University of Tennessee the best way I can on and off the field and I feel I have earned the right to be released unconditional to all schools in Michigan.”

That’s not exactly how his current school sees it.

“We’re not denying him a release to be near his family, get a good education and play Division 1 football at the same time, but we do have a policy of not releasing players to schools we either play or recruit against,” UT said in a statement to the News Sentinel. “Where he’s from, there are several good D-I schools nearby that would be good options to play football, get a good education and keep him near his family.”

In other words, UT is placing restrictions on where Arnett can transfer outside of the SEC, specifically to the two Michigan schools in the Big Ten.  The Vols play neither MSU nor UM during the next three seasons, and had one player on their 2011 roster hailing from the state of Michigan — Arnett.  By my count, a whopping total of four players from that 113-man-strong roster hailed from Midwestern states, and two of their 20 verbal commitments for the Class of 2012 are from that area.

In fairness, the Wolverines had 15 players on their 2011 roster that hailed from “SEC states”, while the Spartans had eight.  Two players out of the 220 that litter the Michigan schools’ rosters this year are from the state of Tennessee. So, roughly 10 percent of those two schools’ rosters are composed of recruits from the SEC’s footprint, and UT is going to toss out a limp recruiting excuse that couldn’t be propped up with a pair of crutches and a quality medical plan?

And here I thought these types of things were a thing of the past upon the departure of The Most Hated Man in College Football.  Hassling a kid who wants to be closer to his sick dad?  You should be ashamed and embarrassed, Vols.

Then again, you can’t spell “gutless” without “UT”…

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32 Responses to “Uncertainty swirls around DeAnthony Arnett’s transfer from Vols”
  1. goblue714 says: Dec 29, 2011 7:27 PM

    Michigan can wait a year for him. Listen kids from michigan stay in state and play for the WOLVERINES.

  2. spartytime says: Dec 29, 2011 7:46 PM

    wow UT and Dooley are asses for this move…i hope every recruit sees this and they pay for it big time. If i was a recruit, I wouldnt wanna go there. take notes O’brien.

    Also come to MSU. screw UM…MSU is the class of B1G now lol

  3. goblue714 says: Dec 29, 2011 7:56 PM

    The class in what way?, state’s 15 minutes are almost up.

  4. tifosi73 says: Dec 29, 2011 8:02 PM

    Another classless university athletic program along with St. Joseph’s for their handling of the Todd O’Brien situation.

    I still can’t believe there are people out there working in higher education that “care about their students” in this manner.

    Unfortunately, they aren’t the only ones.

  5. editordon says: Dec 29, 2011 8:05 PM

    Taylor, you just crossed the line and lost a reader.

  6. spartytime says: Dec 29, 2011 8:08 PM

    hahah walvies are out in full force this year now that their 8 home game slate is finished…good to see that…where were you all the last 3 years? hahahaha

  7. goblue714 says: Dec 29, 2011 8:34 PM


    I just found this site 3 weeks ago.

  8. floridacock says: Dec 29, 2011 8:37 PM

    Don’t blame TN at all.

  9. vols84 says: Dec 29, 2011 8:56 PM

    Young man made a commitment to Tennessee. If he wants a scholly, he can play at Eastern, Western or Central Michigan.

  10. chitownjeff says: Dec 29, 2011 9:25 PM

    That’s what happens when you hire a guy who has a famous last name.. born on third.. thinks he hit a triple..

  11. lbijake says: Dec 29, 2011 9:32 PM

    I would not think this is the rep that UT would want, that they are vindictive while their football team stinks. Stay classy Vols.

  12. choicess says: Dec 29, 2011 9:46 PM

    Taylor, you embossed carbuncle, understand that Coach Hoke is making his presence felt on the recruiting circuit, and yes, we have a coach, Harry Hiestand, who has a presence in IL,OH, and MI. We have a commitment from the #2 prospect in MI, DT Danny O’Brien. Further, mongoloid, if you understand any single thing about college athletics, you would understand the power of the Michigan brand, as well as that of UT. We can fill seats because we have devoted fan bases. There is no other logical justification for Michigan being in a BCS game other than the fact that their brand is powerful and willing to travel. How likely is it that Michigan will play us in a bowl game? Much more likely than us playing EMU. Further, your brilliant evaluation of how our roster is comprised neglects to note the whole “3 coaches in 3 years” thing. Other than that, great reporting, champ.

  13. iplaybad says: Dec 29, 2011 10:59 PM

    Uhhh, Mongloid, Tennessee does not own the kid. He made a mistake in agreeing to go to Tennessee in the first place and now wants to play BCS level ball in his home state. Get over it and move on in life.

  14. choicess says: Dec 29, 2011 11:26 PM

    When you sign the LOI, it has to mean something. Name one other person in this situation who was granted a full release, and I will rest my case. Otherwise you just come off as an ignorant buffoon. Seems you have company, Pilgrim.

  15. choicess says: Dec 29, 2011 11:31 PM

    Made a mistake? If anyone who questioned their spot at UT, we would have no team. This kid wants to play, he is not up to our caliber. He knows he was overrated coming out of HS and will fit in at EMU or CSU, both great options. But there is no way in hell he will ever face us, and if that is hard to understand, I submit to all else while saying you are a mongoloid, insufficient of details, and void of reason.

  16. choicess says: Dec 29, 2011 11:34 PM

    It appears the base of this is full of doubters. With Taylor’s great example, they flock to hate on us at any possible opportunity. Realize you are nothing. Liberate youself. Keep spreading propaganda.

  17. jmurray05 says: Dec 30, 2011 12:09 AM

    In general, I don’t like the transfer rules. I think it gives a coach too much power to pick and choose for various reasons.

    I would like to see the NCAA (and it will never happen) step in and issue a blanket transfer rule that says you have to sit out a year and you can’t transfer to a school on the team’s schedule and not within the conference. And a potential bowl match-up shouldn’t count as a scheduled team. But there is always two sides to both stories, and from what I’ve read Arnett’s dad was sick before his commitment to UT.

    This is also an opportunity to slam CDD without facts, knowledge, or independent thought. This obviously cannot be passed up.

  18. iplaybad says: Dec 30, 2011 12:12 AM

    Yep, it is the good old mentality that the players are just property of the team. Way to go, Tennessee – land of progress! Players leave progams all the time. I mean, shoot, his dad only has a major illness. If you think a scholarship at a school is more important than anything else, you are the idiot mongloid.

    It used to be that you couldn’t spell Citrus without UT… I like Taylor’s new phrase better. Get over yourselves. He made a mistake, has a sick father, and wants to leave. Massa, dontcha thinks its hissem rights?

  19. lbijake says: Dec 30, 2011 12:23 AM

    You should not disrespect the Vols. Your word has some meaning. Just the other day I said to my wife “Sis, these people don’t have no morals.” Cased closed.

  20. goblue714 says: Dec 30, 2011 12:30 AM

    How about this baylor washinton game? Wow!

  21. norcalvol says: Dec 30, 2011 2:36 AM

    Nothing wrong with the MAC schools for football. If Arnett aspires to be in the NFL, tell him that if he is good enough, the NFL will find him, no matter where he plays.

    As for the author of this article, you will never make it with comments like how to spell gutless.

    More like the pot calling the kettle black methinks.

  22. ducej11 says: Dec 30, 2011 9:24 AM

    If the school has the policy, it’s no big issue.

    For the record, 2012 recruits for Tennessee-

    Danny O’Brien, DT- Flint, MI
    LaTroy Lewis, DE- Akron, OH
    Alden Hill, RB- Alliance, OH

    Still recruiting:
    Players Considering Both Tenn and Mich: 11
    Players Considering Both Tenn and Mich St: 3
    Players Considering Tenn, Mich, and Mich St: 2

    Tennessee recruits nationally unlike most colleges. They have one of the largest recruiting budgets in the country because Tennessee is not really a hot bed for football talent. They are giving the kid the option to still play D1 football and make a name for himself. Beggers can’t be choosers.

  23. harleyspoon says: Dec 30, 2011 11:02 AM

    OK, Tennessee, force the kid to stay with the Vols…and hating the Vols while he is at it…Instead, let the kid go to the school of his choice (and that would be up to the schools he is interested in) and get your butts out on the road and recruit another good receiver; there are plenty of them around….Dooley, you are acting like a turd!!

  24. arizonapetdoctor says: Dec 30, 2011 12:35 PM

    Maybe Kiffen wasnt really the problem Tennessee made him out to be. Most elite programs have the feeling that if you do not want to be part of our team, feel free to take your talents elsewhere.

  25. k9overdose says: Dec 30, 2011 12:39 PM

    Stuff happens if it was a Tennessee player that was a position of need that was leaving Michigan u would be saying let him go so he can come home I can say this if he came to Michigan had to sit a year he could learn the offense mesh with d Gardner and be a nice 1 2 punch in 2013 so reguardless of anything tennessee fans he’s leaving so let him go it happens more often then people realize

  26. quitcrying says: Dec 30, 2011 2:14 PM

    I don’t think you know the whole story JT and am surprised by your childish comment. I do think this is a bad move by UT for PR reasons though.

  27. legalarry says: Dec 30, 2011 3:07 PM

    Mr Arnett should honor his committment. Recruiting wars take on different forms. His father undoubtedly had these illnesses when he accepted the scholarship. His scholarship could have offered to someone who keep his word!

  28. jtg48 says: Dec 30, 2011 7:00 PM

    VOL84 I would agree with your assessment except one thing. Universities hire coaches all the time and get rid of them before the contract is up and vice versa. Who gets screwed when that happens? The player who signed to play for that coach and then is stuck playing for someone that didn’t recruit them. Players can’t leave without being penalized when a coach leaves. If the universities don’t have to honor their commitment then I don’t see why you think the student should, especially in a case like this.

  29. jft1608 says: Dec 30, 2011 8:10 PM

    And his dog at his homework. If he wants to go home then let him. He can take a year off and take care of his father. When grown up folks have to make this decision they don’t cry about it, they do what they need to do- If you can’t get a transfer quit- get the job where you need to after you move. If taking care of your pop is the reason you need to move then it should not matter that you have to play football at all. Pick your priorities-Play at a school close to your pop. Sounds to me as if the kid is just jumping ship now that Tennessee is scheduled to be a loser again this year. They have lost 2 or three good recruits so this young man is seeing both Michigan and Michigan St. as teams on the rise. These teams are both is good bowls this year and are expected to be better next year. Tn is not going to be better. Why didn’t he go to one of those schools out of high school? Did they offer scholarships? Oh – needed to get the recognition first that Tn gave?- Pop was ill then as well right? Suck it up – put in your big boy pants.

  30. jmurray05 says: Dec 30, 2011 8:47 PM

    Jft…what two or three good recruits has UT lost?

  31. jtg48 says: Dec 30, 2011 11:30 PM

    Jft, I’m not from Michigan or Tennessee either, but I think maybe you should put on big boy pants and learn to spell and use the English language properly. Maybe his dad got worse after he went down there. Maybe he wants his dad to be able to see his games. You don’t know the circumstances and neither do I, but show the kid some compassion instead of being a jerk.

  32. jft1608 says: Dec 31, 2011 11:41 AM

    jtg- It’s a blog- the thoughts are coherent- so get over the writing aspect. I believe that is enough English even someone NOT from TN or MI can understand.
    Read all this kid’s argument.,when he tries to justify transferring to a different school, it isn’t about his father before all else, it’s about playing football at a BCS level. He earned the right? By being at the school for less then a year? By trying to break his commitment? His pop is an afterthought. The last thing he mentions is family and illness. His dad can see him at a MAC school just as easy as he can MI ST or at MI. My statement is about holding today’s youth responsible for their decisions or choices. As a fan of most sports -I am tired of student athletes whining about being treated unfair and then being given privileges that other students do not get. Even professional athletes keep getting away with crimes and misdemeanors that the average joe would get jail time. In Real life if a man was living in TN working for a company that has a ‘No Compete clause and his pop was sick in MI would he expect his employer to transfer him to a job in MI with a competing company? No, he would have to quit and find a new job. The ‘job’ this young man has now has a no compete clause that he knew about when he signed up for TN. Coach Dooley is going to allow him to go but is just saying he cannot compete against TN- That means the BCS level.

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