One of the most significant issues for Tennessee football in 2022 was the secondary. The Vols consistently ranked near the bottom of the FBS in pass-defense rankings.
Tennessee addressed that need by getting BYU cornerback Gabe Jeudy-Lally out of the transfer portal. Here are five things to know about Jeudy-Lally.
Where Jeudy-Lally ranks
Jeudy-Lally’s time in the transfer portal was quieter than most. He entered the portal on Dec. 28 as a four-star and was the No. 20 available transfer in the cycle.
A three-star prospect out of North Carolina in high school, Jeudy-Lally hails from Charlotte, N.C., and attended Ardrey Kell High School. The fluent Russian speaker ranked as the No. 185 cornerback nationally out of high school.
Jeudy-Lally’s journey to Tennessee football
Jeudy-Lally started his college career as a rival to Tennessee football. After picking up 103 tackles, three interceptions and six fumble recoveries during his high school career, he committed to Vanderbilt.
He started 10 games as a Commodore in 2021 before transferring to BYU. Last year, he started 10 games for BYU. After entering the transfer portal for the third season in a row, Jeuady-Lally returns to the SEC.
Why Tennessee football?
Despite playing in Neyland Stadium a couple of times, Jeudy-Lally didn’t get the chance to take in Knoxville. During the transfer portal visiting period in early January, he got to take in campus and meet the coaching staff.
The coaching staff, as well as the opportunity to obtain a master’s degree, was something Jeudy-Lally couldn’t pass up.
“The people in the building, (I) couldn’t really pass up,” Jeudy-Lally told GoVols247. “There’s so much NFL-development talent in there. Coach Willie has sent a lot of guys to the league, so I think he gives me one of the best opportunities to be able to go do that — especially playing in the best conference. And, also, the ability to walk out in December with my master’s degree is also a big push for me. They give me the ability to do that, so that’s really good for me, too.”
Jeudy-Lally brings a lot of power-five experience to the Vols’ secondary. With four seasons under his belt, it would be surprising if he didn’t start in his first season.
During his three seasons at Vanderbilt, he had 50 tackles and one interception. He finished with 46 tackles and seven pass breaks ups in 13 games with BYU.
Experience against Tennessee
Jeady-Lally has experience playing against the Vols. His lone interception came off of former Tennessee football quarterback J.T. Shrout.
The Vols will look for him to get some interceptions in the Orange and White, boosting a secondary that finished 2022 ranked No. 127 out of 131 FBS teams.