Tennessee OL Richardson Declares For NFL Draft

Junior Tackle Played In 36 Games And Started 24 Times

Friday, December 6, 2013 - by Special to Chattanoogan.com
Antonio Richardson, center, has decided to forego his senior year at Tennessee and enter the 2014 National Football League draft. Richardson played in 36 games for the Vols, starting 24.
Antonio Richardson, center, has decided to forego his senior year at Tennessee and enter the 2014 National Football League draft. Richardson played in 36 games for the Vols, starting 24.
- photo by UT Sports

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Offensive tackle Antonio Richardson will declare for the NFL Draft, forgoing his final year of eligibility at the University of Tennessee.

"We appreciate Antonio's efforts and contributions to the University of Tennessee Football," said head coach Butch Jones. "He will always be a Vol For Life and we wish him all the best as he looks to further his career in the National Football League."

The Nashville native was an All-SEC second-team selection by the Associated Press in 2012. In 2013, he was an SEC preseason first-team honoree. He was also named to the watch lists for the Lombardi and Outland Trophies.

"After praying and talking it over with my family and coaches, I believe that now is the right time to make a statement about my future," said Richardson. "I have truly loved every moment of being a Tennessee Volunteer and will always be a Vol For Life. As much as I have enjoyed my time at Tennessee, I have long dreamed of playing in the NFL and taking care of my family. After careful consideration, I have decided to forego my senior year and enter the 2014 NFL Draft.

"I am grateful to all of my Tennessee coaches and everyone in the football program who made my life easier, from trainers to tutors to our fans, who are the best in the country. I am ready for the next level and look forward to what I know will be an exciting challenge."

In his three years on Rocky Top, Richardson played in 36 games, starting the final 24 over the last two seasons at left tackle. This past season, Richardson was part of an offensive line that aided the Vols gaining 2,261 rushing yards, the most by the team since 2004.

In 2012, Richardson helped the offense to 475.9 yards per game (20th in NCAA) and 315.6 yards of passing offense (15th in NCAA).

With Richardson manning left tackle, the Vols allowed just 23 sacks over the last two years, including just eight in 2012, the fourth fewest in the NCAA at 0.67 per game. Tennessee had five games of more than 500 yards of total offense in 2012.

(E-mail Larry Fleming at larryfleming44@gmail.com)



Strickler Powers East Hamilton Past Bradley, 17-7

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – East Hamilton, riding a two-homer effort by Alyssa Strickler, scored 12 runs in the first three innings and cruised to a 17-7 shellacking of Bradley Central in District 5-AAA softball action Monday. Strickler went 4-for-5 and homered in the third and seventh innings to lead the Lady Hurricanes’ overpowering 23-hit attack. Strickler had four RBIs and scored ... (click for more)

PHOTOS: Soddy Daisy Rally Sinks Baylor, 10-3

Mayor Berke Announces Plan To Provide High-Speed Internet At A Discount Price To Those With Low Incomes

Mayor Andy Berke, in his annual State of the City Address, on Monday announced the creation of the Netbridge Student Discount program. In the partnership with EPB, he said any family of a child eligible for Free and Reduced Lunch in schools can receive 100 megabits per second Internet at a cost of $26.99 per month." Mayor Berke said, "Think about it. Our low income families ... (click for more)

DA Tells Dalton Jury Cell Phone Of Skyy Mims Was Found At Murder Scene

District Attorney Bert Poston told a jury in Dalton on Monday that the cell phone of Skyy Mims was found at the scene of the murder of convenience store clerk DK Chaudhari. He said Ms. Mims carried out the robbery in order to get Lotto tickets that she hoped would bring her money to finance her budding musical career. He said she took 80 "$500 A Week For Life" tickets. The ... (click for more)

The Heart Of A Teacher Makes A Difference - And Response (2)

In less than four weeks, I expect to be one of 216 graduating seniors from East Hamilton School. One could say all possible variables help a student rise to the highest levels in school; but a student is more than his environment or genetic code. He is a mixture of his own propensity and dedication to academics, coupled with a systemic team of mentors who give their all as a student’s ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The P.S. To A Sad Story

Back in the days when we were determined that the Chattanooga News-Free Press would have the best sports section in the country, I was traveling a whole lot. For example, back then I would be leaving today or tomorrow for Saturday’s Kentucky Derby, this after hardly recovering from a week spent at The Masters. And, as it happens with those who are constantly in search for tomorrow’s ... (click for more)