Vols looking for speed in '12

Alton Howard

Derek Dooley and the Tennessee coaching staff is looking for some speed in their 2012 recruiting class. Sign in or sign up to read what this Florida wide receiver had to say about the Volunteers.

After getting a look at Florida's Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey, Tennessee coach Derek Dooley is hoping to snag some speed in the Class of 2012.

His answer could come with wide receiver Alton Howard. The 5-foot-9, 180-pound speedster is set the visit Rocky Top officially for Tennessee's matchup with the Georgia Bulldogs on Oct. 8.

"I am really excited for my visit next weekend," Howard told InsideTennessee. "They are in the SEC, which I like a lot. They have a good coaching staff, great facilities, they have a big stadium, a good football program, they care about academics and they have a loyal coaching staff. I really have a connection with the coaches."

The Vols have come on strong in recent weeks and leading the charge is quarterbacks coach Darin Hinshaw.

"Coach Hinshaw has been my recruiter," Howard said. "We talk, I would say, two or three times a week. I think they want me pretty bad."

Howard ran a hand-timed 4.39 40-yard-dash at a Nike Combine last February. He uses his speed to contribute to his team in a multitude of ways. During his junior season Howard finished with 546 rushing yards and 1,146 receiving and 23 touchdowns.

Howard's senior season has been going well despite being a little nicked up early in the year. He is working hard on his academics and also improving his punt return abilities.

The Orlando, Fla., native reports a core GPA of 2.7 and scored a 910 on his SAT. He will enroll at his school of choice during the summer of 2012.

Tennessee is among Howard's schools of interest, which also include Central Florida, Alabama, West Virginia, Cincinnati and South Carolina.

The Vols are interested in using the Edgewater High School product all over the field, which is appealing for the senior.

"They would use me out of the backfield, at slot receiver and moving me around on special teams," the three-star wide receiver said. "I do special teams for my team now, kick return and punt return, but I like kick return more."

Howard is ranked at the No. 86 wide receiver prospect in the 2012 class. Howard's team is on bye this Friday after winning two straight games. They will be in action against Winter Springs High School on Oct. 6.

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