Vols Basketball vs Auburn
Tennessee men's basketball head coach, Rick Barnes, coaching his team during their game against Auburn at Thompson Boling Arena on Saturday, March 7, 2020.

Tennessee has landed its first commitment of the 2021 signing class as five-star point guard Kennedy Chandler chose the Vols over Memphis, Duke, North Carolina and Kentucky.

The 6-foot-1 guard played his first three years of high school ball at Briarcrest High School in Memphis before deciding to play his senior season at Sunrise Christian Academy, a prep school in Wichita, Kansas.

Chandler ranks as the No. 11 players in the country and the No. 1 point guard in the nation. The Memphis native is known for his speed, high level passing and playmaking ability.

Chandler becomes the first member of a potentially special 2021 signing class. With the five-star point guard in the fold, Rick Barnes and company will now turn their attention to power forward Paolo Banchero, the number three player in the country, power forward Jabari Smith, the number four player in the country and Brandon Huntley-Hatfield, a five-star forward in the 2022 class that’s expected to reclassify.

Tennessee isn’t a lock to get any of these guys but having Chandler in the boat could mae a big difference, especially with Banchero who has talked openly about wanting to play with Chandler.

Major credit to Rick Barnes and assistant coach Kim English who played a major role in Chandler’s recruitment. This marks just the second time this century that Tennessee has gone into Memphis and gotten a player that the Tigers wanted. 

Add that onto beating out blue bloods, Kentucky, Duke and North Carolina, landing Chandler may be the most impressive recruiting win of the 21st century for Tennessee basketball.

Chandler joins Josiah-Jordan James, Keon Johnson and Jaden Springer as five-stars that have committed to Tennessee during the Rick Barnes era.

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