Rocky Top home sweet home for DE

When the Tennessee Volunteers call, people listen, especially the recruits. So when he received a scholarship offer from Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer last week, Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington strongside defensive end Michael Tate pushed the Vols to near the top of his list.
“It’s a big time offer,” Tate, ranked as the nation’s No. 38 strongside defensive end, said. “It really means a lot to me. I’ve been talking to them for a long time, all the way back to August. They said all along they wanted to see me on some more tape, and once we got to about game seven, coach sent in some of my tape.
“Then they called me a few days later and offered me a scholarship. It’s the SEC. That’s big time football.”
Tate, who is 6-foot-4 and 241 pounds, said he will visit Tennessee on January 9. He is also scheduled to visit Oklahoma State on December 5 and is also going to visit Texas A&M, Arkansas and Colorado.
The Aggies are also a new entry to his list. After recruiting him early on and then backing away, A&M is back after a series of weekly calls.
“They just got back in two or three weeks ago,” Tate said. “They want me to come down for a visit and see what it’s like. I know coach Thurman is coming up to visit with my coach here in a few weeks.”
Tate and his teammates open the first round of the Oklahoma state playoffs this weekend. They’ll face TSST and three-star recruit Prentice Elliot. Elliot ripped Booker T. earlier this season for more than 200 yards.
“We made him look like an All-American that game,” Tate said. “We’re going to be ready for him this time.”