it didn’t take long for Bru McCoy to set his sights on Tennessee after adding his name to the NCAA’s transfer portal in January. He heard good things about the Vols from a couple of his former Southern Cal teammates who transferred to play for Tennessee, wide receiver Velus Jones Jr. and kicker Chase McGrathand the Vols were looking for a receiver capable of making an immediate impact on their offense.
At the end of his first visit to Knoxville, McCoy was convinced to follow the same path as Jones and McGrath. McCoy, a former five-star prospect, announced Tuesday night that he’s committed to the Vols, publicly revealing a decision he made weeks ago before concluding his official visit to Tennessee in late March.
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound McCoy will officially join the Vols this month to attend May mini-session classes, giving them a veteran wide receiver capable of helping them replace former starters Jones and JaVonta Payton.
McCoy, who has three seasons of eligibility remaining, said he chose Tennessee because of his “development” as a wide receiver and his “opportunity” to make an immediate impact at the coaching position. jose heupelThe fast-paced, high-scoring offense.
“It’s an amazing staff,” McCoy told GoVols247 before publicly revealing his decision. “They care about their players. Someone like me, I think I will prosper here. This community, the campus, everything, the way people treat each other here, fits the type of person I am.
“And then on the field, obviously the offensive scheme fits the type of player that I am, so it’s healthy, you know, everything is working.”
His official visit to Tennessee in late March allowed him to attend at least part of two of the Vols’ spring practices and spend a lot of time with Heupel’s staff, including the first-year wide receivers coach. daddy kelsey. McCoy came away convinced that he would thrive in Heupel’s system and enjoy playing for the Tennessee coaches.
“They are really committed to their players and their players’ success on and off the field,” said McCoy, a four-star transfer prospect who is ranked by 247Sports as the No. 13 transfer wide receiver for the 2022 cycle.
“As much as they want you to be a great player and productive, they want you to be a great man. They want you to treat the people around you well, but they also want you to thrive on the field, and they’re going to push you, in an uplifting way, but they’re going to push you and get as much as they can. can come out of you. And they’re going to provide the same effort, so it’s even.
“You feel comfortable working hard when a guy is working hard for you.”
McCoy said he informed the Vols of his decision in late March before the end of his official visit to Knoxville.
“It was right before practice, so I was like, ‘Oh, hell, dude,’ but like, ‘Come on!’” he said, recalling the Tennessee coaches’ reaction. “They are excited. I’m excited. However, it is time to go to work.”
The positive feedback he received about the Vols from his former USC teammates McGrath and Jones, who were back in Knoxville for Tennessee pro day during McCoy’s visit, helped the Vols emerge as one of the favorites to make it. But he said he needed to see Tennessee for himself to verify what he’d heard about the show, and he wasn’t disappointed.
“Talking with Chase and Velus piqued my interest,” McCoy said. “But you have to come to experience something. You have to make your own opinion. So I went in with a completely open mind. I hadn’t planned any other visits, and it’s like, ‘Hey, let’s check it out and see if everything they said is true.’
“And everything that the coaches have been saying on the phone and everything, it was more than true.”
During the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, McCoy caught 21 passes for 236 yards and two touchdowns in six games while playing on a USC receiving corps that included a 2021 fourth-round NFL draft pick in Amon-Ra St. Browna 2022 NFL draft first round pick in drake london and another receiver Tyler Vaughn who spent the 2021 season on an NFL practice squad.
McCoy was up for a breakout season with the Trojans in 2021, but he was suspended for the entire season following a domestic violence arrest in July and was never reinstated. The Los Angeles County district attorney declined to file charges in August, and the USC Title IX office dismissed the case in February.
The Vols haven’t made any promises to McCoy, he said, about the role he could play once he arrives in Tennessee later this spring. But Heupel’s staff has made it clear that he will have a chance to compete for immediate playing time, and perhaps even earn the starting job against the fifth-year senior. Cedric Tillmanwho was the leading receiver for the Vols last season.
“The way I looked at it is there is an opportunity,” said McCoy, who was ranked the No. 9 overall prospect in the class of 2019, according to the industry-generated 247Sports Composite, which came out of Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Calif.
“Obviously, there are no handouts. Things are not only delivered to you, they are given to you. But there’s an opportunity to come in and gain a real position here: be a real contributor, help this team win games and that sort of thing.”
Patrick Brown of GoVols247 contributed to this report