Alvin Kamara

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Tennessee RB Alvin Kamara out for South Carolina

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Tennessee will be witout running back Alvin Kamara this weekend when they take on South Carolina in SEC East play. The details of the injury have not been disclosed by Vols head coach Butch Jones or the program.

“As of right now, he does not need surgery and we’re anticipating him being back here in the next week or two,” Jones said on Monday. Given that, it sounds like this is not a major injury for Kamara, and if Jones thinks there is a chance Kamara will be back in the next couple of weeks that should be encouraging.

The schedule also allows Tennessee to move on without Kamara without fearing too much about the result of the game. The Vols do have to go on the road to play the Gamecocks, so you never know exactly what will happen. But next week, Tennessee plays host to Tennessee Tech and the week after that they play the Kentucky Wildcats (in what is suddenly, potentially an important game in the SEC East race).

Kamara is Tennessee’s second-leading rusher this season behind Jalen Hurd with 313 rushing yards and three touchdowns.

With three key underclassmen returning, time is now for Vols to make push in SEC East

AP Photo/Chris O'Meara
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The deadline for underclassmen to declare their intentions to enter the 2016 NFL Draft passed yesterday, and Tennessee running back Alvin Kamara opted to pass on a shot at playing on Sundays in order to come back and help Tennessee reclaim some SEC East glory.

Kamara rushed for 698 yards and seven touchdowns for Tennessee last season, playing a solid complementary role alongside Jalen Hurd (1,288 yards, 12 touchdowns). Kamara also added 291 receiving yards and three touchdowns and returned a small handful of punts, with one going for a touchdown. The former Alabama running back transferred into a good spot at Tennessee and will be part of a nice thunder-and-lightning backfield for Tennessee in 2016. Kamara was believed to be liekly to enter the NFL Draft, with the outlook of playing a third-down back role. A return to Tennessee in 2016 could allow him to show off more of his abilities and change the way he is potentially used in the future.

Kamara is joined by junior linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin and cornerback Cameron Sutton as three key underclassmen who will return to play for Butch Jones in 2016. The 2016 season figures to be one of great optimism for the Volunteers as the roster assembled under Jones since his arrival is starting to come together strongly and develop to the point of breaking out. After two straight seasons ending with big bowl margins of victory, the time for Tennessee to begin moving up in the SEC East is now.

Tennessee had the second-best recruiting class in 2015, behind Alabama, and the third best in 2014 (trailing only Alabama and LSU). Rivals currently ranks Tennessee ninth in the SEC and 29th overall, but that could change between now and signing day as well.

CFT 2015 Preseason Preview: Key Transfers

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Recruiting is what builds a college football program. Transfers are what patches holes still left to address. It seems as though the transfer game in recruiting has picked up notoriety in recent years, and this past offseason may have been one of the biggest.

This season two programs look to replace Heisman Trophy winners with potential Heisman candidates, while also keeping playoff plans on the table. Other playoff and conference title contenders look to add some key additions as well thanks to the transfer process. Here are some of the more notable transfers taking the field with new teams this fall.

EVERETT GOLSON, QB, FLORIDA STATE
Perhaps the most notable of the offseason transfers saw former Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson leave the Irish for Florida State. Golson is expected to replace former Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston. The addition of Golson helps keep Florida State in the running for another ACC title despite filling plenty of starting jobs from a season ago. Golson ran into some trouble with consistency last season but will now be surrounded by plenty of talent and athleticism, and the chance to redeem himself and put another team in the national title hunt will be one worth relishing.

VERNON ADAMS, QB, OREGON
Golson is not the only transfer replacing a former Heisman Trophy winner. Vernon Adams is making the jump from FCS power Eastern Washington to perennial Pac-12 and national title contender Oregon, vying to replace Marcus Mariota. Adams should fit well in Oregon’s system, assuming he wins the starting job in Eugene. Twice a finalist for the FCS equivalent of the Heisman Trophy, the Walter Payton Award, Adams already has a terrific resume. Now he looks for quite the storybook ending.

DEVONTE FIELDS, DE, LOUISVILLE
The former Big 12 freshman defensive player of the year is finally back on the FBS playing field. Now at Louisville, Devonte Fields has a chance to bring havoc in the trenches to opposing ACC offensive linemen and quarterbacks. The former TCU Horned Frog should play a huge role on Louisville’s defensive line. But Fields is not the only player looking to embrace a second chance on the Cardinals defense…

JOSH HARVEY-CLEMONS, S, LOUISVILLE
Former Georgia Bulldog safety Josh Harvey-Clemons landed in the Louisville nest last season but had to sit out the 2014 season due to NCAA transfer rules. Now he is eligible to play and leave an impact on what could be a very good Louisville defense. Harvey-Clemons was often among the best players on the field when he played at Georgia, and that could be the case once again at Louisville if he has not lost a step in his year away from the field.

ALVIN KAMARA, RB, TENNESSEE
Former Alabama running back Alvin Kamara is back in the SEC after a year of junior college. Kamara was one of the top junior college transfers this past year, continuing an impressive recruiting trail for the Vols under Butch Jones. Kamara was a monster at the JUCO level and should be put to work out of the Tennessee backfield along with Jalen Hurd.

CHAD KELLY, QB, OLE MISS
Ole Miss does not have many holes to fill this season with a ton of starters returning, but quarterback is one of them. Fortunately, replacing Bo Wallace should be fairly easy with former Clemson quarterback Chad Kelly in the mix. Kelly is one of many notable players seeking to take advantage of a second chance at the FBS level after being dismissed by Clemson last year. Kelly will have to stay in the good graces of head coach Hugh Freeze to hold down the starting job, but he should manage to come away with the job entering the 2015 season.

JOVON ROBINSON, RB, AUBURN
Auburn’s offense is expected to light up that giant new scoreboard in Jordan-Hare Stadium this season, and the top JUCO transfer Jovon Robinson could be a big part of the reason why. The former Army All-American dominated at Georgia Military Institute and should make for a powerful combo with running back Roc Thomas and quarterback Jeremy Johnson in Auburn’s backfield. Auburn also solidifies some holes in the defensive secondary with the additions of Michigan graduate transfer Blake Countess and former Georgia safety Tray Matthews.

MARQUAVIUS LEWIS, DE, SOUTH CAROLINA
South Carolina may not have another Jadeveon Clowney on its hands, but Marquavius Lewis is already earning a solid reputation with the Gamecocks. Lewis was named South Carolina’s defensive player of the spring and should help improve what was a weak area of concern for Steve Spurrier last season. The Gamecocks need help on the defensive line and the addition of Lewis could provide it as one fo the top JUCO transfers in the nation.

BAKER MAYFIELD, QB, OKLAHOMA
Oklahoma hired Lincoln Riley to be the new offensive coordinator, which means the Sooners are looking to open things up offensively through the air. Having a quarterback suited well in that offensive mindset is key, and Baker Mayfield may be the best option in Norman. A former Texas Tech walk-on, Mayfield showed glimpses of what he can do with the Red Raiders. Now the Sooners will hope he can take it to the next level. Mayfield will have to win the job from incumbent Trevor Knight, but that may not be too far-fetched of a goal.

Former ‘Bama RB Alvin Kamara officially a Vol

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In June, Alvin Kamara verbally committed to continue his collegiate career at Tennessee.  Six months later, the running back followed through on that verbal pledge.

Wednesday, UT confirmed that Kamara has signed with the Vols.  Today is the first day junior college players can sign with FBS programs; Kamara spent the 2014 season at the JUCO level.

It was confirmed in January of this year that Kamara would be transferring from Alabama after just one season.  During that one year in Tuscaloosa, Kamara racked up more suspensions (two) than carries (zero).  In February, Kamara was arrested on multiple misdemeanor traffic offenses.

Coming out of Norcross, Ga., as a four-star recruit, Kamara was rated as the No. 2 all-purpose back in the country in the Class of 2013.  He’s rated as a four-star prospect this go-around too.

Prior to settling on Tennessee, Kamara had also shown interest in Clemson and Georgia.

(Photo credit: Rivals.com)

Former Alabama RB Kamara heading to Tennessee

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Former Alabama running back Alvin Kamara is staying in the SEC. On Saturday Kamara announced on Twitter he will be joining Tennessee, one of the schools that had been mentioned as a possible landing spot since Kamara made the decision to transfer out of Alabama.

This is a tremendous addition for Butch Jones and the Vols, because Kamara was a four-star recruit out of high school with plenty of potential. When initially reported it was though Kamara would be prohibited from transferring to any other SEC school but that restriction was quickly thrown out of the picture. That was great news for Tennessee, and the program pounced on the opportunity to add a talented running back to the picture.

Kamara previously stated he would be playing football at the junior college level in 2014 with the hope of returning to the FBS level in 2015. Kamara had also visited Clemson, which appeared to be a top candidate along with Georgia and Tennessee.

Kamara will head to Tennessee looking to get a fresh start and stay out of trouble. Kamara was suspended twice by Alabama in his short stay in Tuscaloosa. He missed a regular season game against LSU for a violation of team rules and behavior and he was suspended from the Sugar Bowl as well. Kamara was also buried in the depth of the running back position at Alabama.