Last year, some people were fretting about the relative lack of local and in-state recruiting under Vanderbilt Commodores head coach Derek Mason.
Those concerns seem to have been addressed. A little over a week ago, Mason landed commitments from a pair of players at local powerhouse Brentwood Academy in Gavin Schoenwald and Camron Johnson, and on Sunday, Memphis Whitehaven DB Rayshad Williams joined the fold as he announced his commitment to Vanderbilt.
Mason has emphasized length on the defensive side of the ball and Williams has that in spades at 6’4” and 185 pounds -- rare size for a cornerback prospect. The 247 Sports composite ranks Williams as the #80 cornerback prospect in the Class of 2018, and the #28 prospect in the state of Tennessee; 247’s own in-house ratings are a bit more bullish, ranking him the #22 prospect in Tennessee. ESPN also ranks Williams #22 in Tennessee and #50 nationally at his position. Rivals is the most bearish of the three recruiting services, but still has him rated as a three-star recruit and #34 in Tennessee. Williams selected Vanderbilt over competing offers from Arkansas, Memphis, Ole Miss, Tennessee, and Virginia Tech.
Whitehaven is a football powerhouse in the Memphis area that won a state championship in 2016, and Williams joins Darrius Sims and Gerald Perry as recent Tiger products that have chosen Vanderbilt. Here is Williams’ junior year highlight tape:
Vanderbilt is now up to 12 commitments in the 2018 recruiting class.