Four-star defensive lineman Ethan Utley celebrated Christmas by releasing his top schools. Tennessee football made the list along with Texas, Michigan, Oklahoma and Syracuse.
Utley is out of Ensworth High School in Nashville, Tennessee.
Utley ranks as the No. 112 prospect overall in the class of 2025 by 247Sports Composite rankings. He also ranks as the No. 11 defensive lineman in the class and the No. 4 prospect from Tennessee. He currently holds at least 40 scholarship offers.
Florida, Vanderbilt, Miami, North Carolina, Auburn, Penn State, Texas A&M and Georgia all made Utley’s top 12 schools back in July, but they did not make the cut in his top five. Syracuse was not among his top 12 schools, but the Orange hiring former Texas A&M defensive line coach Elijah Robinson likely played a role in their addition. Robinson takes the same position at Syracuse under new head coach Fran Brown, and the Orange extedned Utley a scholarship offer on Dec. 4.
Tennessee gave Utley one of his first SEC offers in September 2021. The Vols have hosted Utley several times. Most recently, the 6-foot-4 and 270-pound defensive lineman visited for Tennessee’s matchup with Georgia. He also visited for the Texas A&M game this season.
Utley also made the trip to Knoxville for Tennessee’s matchup with Kentucky in 2022 and the South Carolina contest in 2021.
His most recent trip was to watch Michigan defeat Ohio State in the final week of the season. He visited Texas and Texas A&M as well during the 2023 season.
Utley is a top focus for the Vols in the 2025 class as the trenches remain a priority for head coach Josh Heupel. Tennessee’s 2024 class had five projected defensive linemen sign. That list includes Five-star EDGE Jordan Ross, four-star Kellen Lindstrom, four-star Jeremias Heard, four-star Carson Gentle and JUCO signee Jamal Wallace.