Awesome, thank you all for the information. In relation to my transcripts, my worry was that in addition to my GPA, they would actually look at the grades I received for the courses. I know they put more emphasis on the overall LSDAS GPA, but do they factor in your actual course grades themselves when making a decision?
Currently, I'm taking one to two years off to work at a local college. I'm hoping this experience can be an added bonus in the "soft" areas, and that if I add an addendum, I can make a convincing argument that I've matured greatly and am ready for the next phase of my life. To be perfectly honest, I don't really have a solid reason why those two to three semesters were so lackluster (no family, substance abuse, or financial issues) other than the fact that I got kind of lazy and was more focused on my fraternity and social life than I was on academics.
On a side note, I plan to stay here in the eastern Tennessee region, so obviously UT's College of Law would probably be the best option for me. Would Alabama or Wake Forest (I know they're more highly ranked) be good options if I plan on remaining in the area, or would UT's name recognition among local firms outweigh their higher ranking? What about Ole Miss? It's my safety school, and its low cost of tuition makes it a compelling option, but I'm worried about job options in East Tennessee/Western North Carolina. I do NOT want to live/practice law in Mississippi or West Tennesssee (Memphis).