December 11, 2008

Tennessee commitment looking around again

MOBILE, Ala. _ Maybe it's a sign. Maybe it's not.

However, Decatur (Austin), Ala., inside linebacker D.T. Shackelford hasn't heard from new Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin yet.

That's significant because Shackelford verbally committed to the Volunteers earlier this fall, before Phillip Fulmer resigned under pressure in the midst of a losing season.

"I heard that he's a cool man," Shackelford said, referring to Kiffin during a break from Team Alabama's practices for Saturday's Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala. "I can't really say anything bad about Tennessee. It's a good program. I know they won't hire anybody who's not really all that good."

Still, the three-star prospect is looking around and planning official visits in locales not named Knoxville. Specifically, Shackelford said, he's hoping to visit Ole Miss, Vanderbilt and LSU.

"I like what they have going on at Ole Miss, Shackelford said. "I actually went up there to take an unofficial visit (for the Louisiana-Monroe game on Nov. 15, a 59-0 Rebel win). I liked it up there.

"I liked the atmosphere there. I got a chance to experience the Grove, the Circle, all of that stuff. I like the feel of it down there."

Shackelford has an impressive offer list that includes Ole Miss, Vanderbilt, LSU, Tennessee, South Carolina, UAB, Marshall, Stanford, Mississippi State and Army.

Shackelford has been working at defensive end, defensive tackle and linebacker this week in Mobile. He said Ole Miss is "looking at me at inside and outside linebacker. I play defensive end. I can go down to defensive end."

Shackelford had 89 tackles, including 20 for loss, as a senior. He had to move from defensive end to middle linebacker due to a knee injury suffered by a teammate.

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