The 5-foot-11, 190-pound sophomore also recorded nine receiving yards and one receiving touchdown in the season-opening contest.
Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel met with media on Thursday and discussed Sampson’s leadership ability.
“It’s rare,” Heupel said. “His freshman year, he got here in the summer, he wasn’t a mid-year enrollee. He’s extremely bright, smart and has a great feel naturally at the position. You saw him help on special teams as well last year. This offseason he’s continued that growth. His energy has been infectious from day one.
“This offseason, he initially wasn’t a part of our leadership council, but what he did all winter and spring ball, we put him on our leadership council. He’s very confident in who he is, he knows what he’s doing, he knows who he is outside of the building, and he brings a great energy. He demands things of the guys around him. He’s willing to act. That’s the first step of leadership. He has a great football future and great leadership traits inside of our building. He’s been huge for us.”
Sampson appeared in 10 games for the Vols in 2022, recording 397 rushing yards, six rushing touchdowns, three receptions and 24 kick return yards.
Photo by Dan Harralson, Vols Wire