Team News (current roster)

ndubvols

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Feels like Barnes is hinting at Corey Walker, right? Because from what I've seen this year in their limited minutes Gaines & Pember don't strike me as guys who can "help" the offense. If it is Walker, I guess that speaks to why a healthy Top 75 recruit is riding the bench this season.
After watching the first 30 minutes of this game, I’m thinking this was directed primarily at ON.
 

MoB_MoVols

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It wasn’t exactly an awe inspiring win for the Vols in Nashville on Wednesday against a Vanderbilt team that was extremely short handed and without two of the top five scorers in the SEC. The Vols did get a win though, which is the most important thing. Now we’ll all stand back and see if they can build on that win when they travel to Auburn on Saturday. It’s not been their strong suit. They’ve followed up their last two wins with losses the next time out. Auburn could be vulnerable this week though if Sharife Cooper remains out with injury as seems likely.
The issues for this team haven’t changed since the start of SEC play. Post production has gone downhill steadily and continued on Wednesday night when John Fulkerson took two shots and scored four points. He was limited by foul trouble but didn’t attempt a field goal in the second half. Everyone around the program is perplexed by the senior’s struggles but no one has an answer. It’s hard to see Tennessee making much noise in the postseason if he doesn’t give them more than the four points he’s gone for in each of the last two games.
Tennessee’s collection of guards are explosive enough to carry them on some nights but they’re not making a deep run without some help inside. Josiah-Jordan James returned from his wrist injury in Nashville but he kind of gutted it out as some around the program have indicated he still wasn’t at 100% with his left wrist, which he originally injured all the way back against Kansas and is fighting through.
-VQ
 

MoB_MoVols

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As Tennessee prepares to take on Oregon State today in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament the million dollar question on the minds of Vol fans is whether or not John Fulkerson will be on the floor. As of late Thursday night the answer to that question remains unknown. In talking to people around the program the Vols are not counting on having Fulkerson available, however, they also haven’t ruled him out. The issue isn’t the facial surgery that Fulkerson had on Sunday. That was the same surgery that Yves Pons had last season and then played one day later wearing a protective mask.
The issue for Fulkerson is all about clearing concussion protocol. Test on Thursday showed that he was getting closer and there’s a chance that he could wake up Friday morning and get cleared, but there is no guarantee. At the very least that would leave open the possibility of him playing on Sunday if he is out on Friday. If Fulkerson is out look for Rick Barnes to give everyone on the bench a shot and hope that he finds something that clicks. We were told on Thursday that it wouldn’t even be a surprise to see Drew Pember get some playing time.
Uros Plavsic gave Tennessee 17 solid minutes against Alabama. He may have a chance to play that many again, Oregon State has a plodding 7-footer of their own in Roman Silva (7-foot-1, 265 pounds) that would be a good match-up for the Vols’ big man. It’s a profitable weekend for Rick Barnes. By getting the Vols into the NCAA Tournament, Barnes will put 200k in his pocket. If the Vols win today, it becomes 400k. If they advance to the Sweet Sixteen then the bonus becomes 600k.
-VQ
 

MoB_MoVols

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Rick Barnes started taking some steps towards filling the vacancy left by Kim English’s departure this week, meeting with a pair of candidates. We said last week that this hire would most likely be a young coach, Barnes having liked the dynamic that an assistant English’s age brought to the program and that it would be a hire made with recruiting in mind. Based on the two candidates who interviewed this week that is certainly the case. Both are young and both have strong and recent experience in big time grass roots programs.
Rod Clark, currently at Austin Peay, interviewed on Friday. Clark is originally from Kansas City. He got started on the path to college coaching with the powerhouse MOKAN Elite NIKE travel team, consistently one of the top travel programs in the country. Clark also coached at Sunrise Christian Academy, annually one of the most loaded prep school programs in the nation and where Kennedy Chandler moved to for his senior year.
The second candidate to be seen this week is Amorrow Morgan who is currently at South Alabama where he has the title of associate head coach. He played collegiately at Idaho State but he’s originally from Memphis, so it’s not hard to see why that would be attractive to Tennessee. There’s a chance that Barnes may have two vacancies to fill. We’ve previously mentioned that Des Oliver is very much in play at Winthrop and that remains the case. There’s another potential landing spot for Oliver after the upheaval in Johnson City this week. Officials have already reached out to Oliver and based on what we’re hearing he’s a serious candidate for the opening.
-VQ
 

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