The momentum for Jackson, Tennessee defensive end Greg Emerson seems to reside squarely with Tennessee.
Emerson is close with a large group of Vols commits and that bond expanded yesterday with his time in Knoxville for 'Orange Carpet Day.' A visit that seems to be only topped by his future trips to Rocky Top.
"Honestly I think it gets better every time," Emerson said. "They always bust out something new in your face. This is my first time coming up for 'Orange Carpet Day' and I got to see a lot of different recruits and meet up with a lot of the commits. Today was amazing. It was a good 'Orange Carpet Day.'"
Surrounded by his good buddies D'Andre Litaker, Cade Mays, Brant Lawless and other Tennessee commitments for the 2018 class, Emerson fully-understands that he is the missing piece to their group. He also enjoys the fact that he can just be himself and not worry about feeling the pressure to jump in the big orange boat until he is ready.
"It actually does (make it easier)," Emerson said. "They don't try to pressure you into being a commitment. They just how you how good the state is itself, the city and they always chill. They don't bring up, 'Greg you need to commit.' and they just tell you how it is."
The Tennessee staff made Litaker, Emerson and Lawless a priority a long time ago, but back in February as the finishing touches on the 2017 class pieced together, they began their pitch of the "Big 3" to each kid. With two of the three already committed, Emerson admits that it will be hard to not fulfill that trifecta.
"It would be tough," Emerson said. "Real tough. We just chill. We are Tennessee boys so we stick together."
Alabama, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Oregon and Clemson join the Vols in Emerson's Top 6 that he released last month. Just two months ago, he was topping the scales at 295 pounds. A desire to play defensive end instead of defensive tackle pushed the talented defender to drop weight. He currently weighs 257 pounds and is feeling lean and ready to be mean inside the white lines.
"Body wide and all around, I feel way better," Emerson said. "When I was at 295, I had bad shin-splints and I couldn't run as fast. My 40 time dropped to a 4.6. I've dropped two tenths in my 40 time. My whole being stationary to being mobile explosiveness has all transitioned with that weight loss."
Rivals.com ranks Emerson as a 4-star defensive end in the class of 2018.
Strongside defensive end