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Devaun Swafford

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Tennessee commitments Devaun Swafford and Malik Foreman always dreamed of playing together on the next level.

That dream became a reality when the two Dobyns Bennett (Tenn.) High School athletes were offered and committed to Tennessee late last week.

"My grandfather was a big fan of Tennessee and Malik and I have always wanted to play together so both of those were a big factors," Swafford told InsideTennessee of his reasons for committing to the Vols. "I had been offered by a bunch of FCS schools and just a few FBS schools. When Tennessee offered it was an easy choice."

And the Tennessee coaches were ecstatic when both Swafford and Foreman gave them the word than their commitments were clad in Orange & White.

"I called coach Graham to give my commitment and he was really excited and told me to call Coach Jones," Swafford said. "When I called coach Jones he was pumped. He told me ‘welcome to the family.'"

Tennessee running backs coach Jay Graham was the lead on both Swafford and Foreman and created an immediate connection with the two players.

"I had an immediate connection with the coaching staff," Swafford said. "You can tell they are good people that care about you. It was just cool to talk to them and know they wanted me at Tennessee."

At 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, Swafford has been a major weapon for the Indians both on offense and defense. He finished the season with 1,238 yards rushing for 29 touchdowns, reeled in 20 catches for 350 yards and four touchdowns and added two punt return touchdowns. On defense, the senior racked up 20 tackles, five interceptions and five pass breakups.

Swafford, who reports a 3.5 core GPA, says that the offer to Tennessee was a dream come true after receiving offers from schools like Murray State, Austin Peay, Tennessee Tech, Wofford, University of Tennessee Chattanooga and Liberty.

"It didn't really set in that Malik and I had an offer until after we were leaving Tennessee from our visit," he said. "We have always wanted to play together and we were riding back from our visit just thinking how crazy everything was."

Tennessee, who wants Swafford as a defensive back or slot receiver, has talked to the senior about greyshirting for the 2013 season, but added that he would have a chance to compete for a spot in the 2013 class.

"They asked me to greyshirt, but they told me that I can come in and compete and if I do well I can be apart of the 2013 class," Swafford said. "If I can't earn a spot I will come in the 2014 class."

Swafford, Foreman and the Indians are coming off a 12-1 2012 season that saw Dobyns Bennett make it all the way to the Tennessee State 6A quarterfinals before falling to Maryville (Tenn.) High School 41-20. Moving forward, Swafford, who claims 4.61 40-yard dash speed, says getting faster will be his main priority.

"I need to work on my speed, but I am physical, aggressive and like to jam receivers at the line and get in their head early," he said. "People have told me that by feet and hips are my best skills. On offense, I have good vision and see the field really well. I just go out and make plays when I get the ball."

You can see highlights from the first five games of Swafford's senior season below:

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