Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Vols on the rise?
By Luke Lapinski
After six consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament, Tennessee hasn't gone dancing in either of the last two seasons. That small drought could very well end in 2013-14 though.
The loss of Jeronne Maymon to injury put the Volunteers in a tough spot before the 2012-13 season even began. And a mediocre start put them in a hole that they couldn't quite dig themselves out of. When all was said and done, a late surge gave them 20 wins -- but ultimately left them on the wrong side of the bubble.
Maymon will be back next season, however. As will the main pieces from this year's lineup. Jordan McRae, Jarnell Stokes and Trae Golden were the top three scorers, and all have at least one more year of eligibility left. On top of that, the addition of four-star recruit Robert Hubbs (No. 34 on the ESPN 100) should help as well.
John GasawaySigns of a strong 2013-14 effort?
"This defense was particularly weak early in SEC play, and by the time Cuonzo Martin's men figured out how to play without Maymon, it was too late -- barely -- to earn an NCAA tournament bid. Now, with a healthy Maymon joining Jordan McRae, Trae Golden and Jarnell Stokes, Tennessee will have the weapons necessary to compete for "best SEC team besides Kentucky" bragging rights."