Days before the start of its season, Tennessee received a major boost to its defense.
After multiple outlets reported the news Tuesday night, Tennessee confirmed Wednesday that Michigan transfer Aubrey Solomon will be eligible to suit up for the team this season. Solomon has two years to play for the Vols.
"We found out yesterday that Aubrey Solomon will be eligible to play for us this year," UT head coach Jeremy Pruitt said. "I'm excited for Aubrey and his family. He's a great person. I know this has been tough for him kind of waiting on this the last six or seven months here. He's stayed the course, done really well in school. I'm glad he's getting an opportunity to play."
Added Solomon: "I'm beyond excited to be playing football this season. I can't wait to suit up with my brothers. I want to thank my mom, Coach Pruitt, Coach [Tracy] Rocker and the Tennessee administration and compliance staff for helping me throughout this process. I'm ready to roll. Go Vols."
Solomon was one of three five-star recruits Michigan signed in the class of 2017. He played in all 13 games, including three starts, as a true freshman. He was limited to just five games in 2018 as he dealt with a knee injury and decided to leave Ann Arbor after the season. Overall, Solomon, a Georgia native, totaled 24 tackles and two tackles for loss during his time with the Wolverines.
Now healthy, the 6-foot-5, 300-pound Solomon could move into the starting lineup right away for the Vols, especially after Emmit Gooden went down with a season-ending knee injury.
Solomon is just the second Michigan transfer to be granted immediate eligibility, joining Rutgers linebacker Drew Singleton. The families of two others, cornerback Myles Sims (Georgia Tech) and offensive lineman James Hudson (Cincinnati), have been critical of the way Michigan has handled their waiver processes. Sims, however, won his NCAA appeal and will be eligible in 2019.
Tennessee opens up the 2019 season against Georgia State on Saturday.
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