The linebacker position is a big concern for Tennessee heading into the 2021 season, but a big transfer commitment has calmed the fears of Vol Nation, at least for now as the Volunteers landed a commitment from Texas transfer Juwan Mitchell on Monday. Mitchell led the Longhorns in tackles during the 2020 season with 62 total in 10 games.
Mitchell, a 6-foot-1, 230-pound senior from Newark, New Jersey, registered 4.5 tackles for loss, one quarterback hurry and one pass breakup for the Longhorns last season. That came on the heels of a sophomore season in 2019 in which he tallied 39 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, three sacks and four pass breakups.
He announced his decision to enter the transfer portal on March 31, shortly after the Longhorns started spring practice under first-year coach Steve Sarkisian. Chip Brown of 247Sports reported that, at the time of his announcement, Mitchell was having some academic issues that needed to be worked through prior to the 2021 season.
Mitchell was a three-star prospect and the No. 158 overall prospect in the Class of 2018. He played his freshman season at Butler (Kansas) Community College, where he earned honorable mention All-Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference honors in 2018. He had 55 tackles and 7.5 for loss — tops on the team among freshman defenders.
He’ll join a Volunteer program under first-year coach Josh Heupel that is looking to fill a big void left by transfer linebacker Henry To’o To’o (TBD) and Quavaris Crouch (Michigan State) — two of their top three tacklers from 2020.