May, 2014


Jordan McRae NBA Draft bio

Jordan McRae Position: Shooting Guard Height/Weight: 6-6/185 Birthdate: March 28, 1991 College: Tennessee   Strengths Big-time scorer Can get to the rim and finish with authority Vastly improved 3-point shooter Solid free-throw shooter Improve defender   Weaknesses Thin frame; has to get bigger and stronger   NBA projection: McRae has been projected in the second round to undrafted category, but during the postseason he showed signs of his next-level potential with his ability to finish at the rim and his improving defense.   2013-14 Season McRae was a first-team All-SoutheasternRead More

Jarnell Stokes NBA Draft bio

Jarnell Stokes Position: Power Forward Height/Weight: 6-8/260 Birthdate: Jan. 7, 1994 College: Tennessee   Strengths Big-time offensive rebounder Good passer Can score facing the basket Strong Rock-solid base—huge legs and feet; hard to root out of the post Good shot blocker   Weaknesses He’ll have to prove he can score over length   NBA projection: Some analysts have started to place Stokes in their first-round projections.   2013-14 Season Only three players in Division I averaged a double-double in conference play: Kentucky’s Julius Randle, Washington State’s D.J. Shelton and StokesRead More

Versatile Patterson trying to make good on boyhood boast

One day when he was about seven years old, Lamar Patterson stood in front of his family and made a bold proclamation. Patterson’s clan, from Lancaster, Pa., included two brothers who were 10 and seven years older than him, and both were accomplished athletes. Pointing in the direction of brothers Lorne Creighton, who played basketball at Division II Kutztown University, and Perry Patterson, who was a Division I basketball prospect but wound up playing quarterback at Syracuse, young Lamar blurted out, “I’ll be better than both of you. You’re notRead More

Release point center of attention for Jordan Clarkson

As Jordan Clarkson makes his way around the country showcasing his skills in workouts for NBA teams, two words will be on the former Missouri point guard’s mind: Release point. Those words can mean different things to different people, from paratroopers to pitchers. For a basketball player, the release point in a jump shot is all important, the difference between being streaky or, in coaching parlance, a no-leave guy. If Clarkson can convince an NBA general manager that he’s a no-leave guy, his chances of elevating his draft stock—he’s currentlyRead More

The art of recruiting junior college players

A Division I basketball coach who knows Tennessee coach Donnie Tyndall and his staff told me a couple of weeks ago that “besides Wichita State, no staff in the country may be more connected in the junior college ranks than Tennessee.” Of course, that coach was referring to the great Steve Forbes, former Tennessee assistant, ace recruiter, and the captain of the All-Lobby team at the Final Four (the dude knows everybody). He’s also a former junior college head coach, and before Wichita State’s Gregg Marshall rescued him from theRead More

If you think Tyndall and his staff worked quickly in recruiting, watch out for the Vols’ schedule

If Tennessee basketball fans think Donnie Tyndall works fast at recruiting, they haven’t seen anything yet. If things go as planned, the Vols will announce their 2014-15 schedule sometime in the next 10 days. As college hoops schedules go, that’s the equivalent of being first in line at an all-you-can eat pizza buffet. Many schools go through the summer without wrapping up their schedules, and some don’t have them completed until September, just a couple of weeks before the start of fall practice. Tyndall had some help from an astuteRead More

Anatomy of a recruiting class: How Tennessee signed half a team in a month

It was little more than a month ago when Donnie Tyndall, just hired to replace Cuonzo Martin as Tennessee’s basketball coach, convened his staff for a late-night recruiting meeting. Tyndall was reasonably certain the four-man class signed by Martin would be gone, and he knew it was possible a few current Vols might depart as well. The Tennessee coaches, faced with the prospect of recruiting half a team, would have to get busy. And they didn’t have much time. “That first meeting, I told our staff [Adam Howard, Chris Shumate,Read More

New recruit Carmichael brings intensity to Vols’ post rotation

Has new Tennessee basketball coach Donnie Tyndall found another Kenneth Faried, the former first-round NBA Draft pick who played for Tyndal at Morehead State? Willie Carmichael, the latest recruit in the bountiful seven-player harvest raked in by Tyndall and his staff, may never be drafted, and he probably won’t become the best rebounder in the college game, as Faried was, but he’s been called a “poor man’s Kenneth Faried,” for his penchant of picking clean the backboards, in or out of his area. Like Tyndall’s other two post recruits, 6-9Read More

Ian Chiles fits well into Tennessee’s crowded backcourt mix

How does Ian Chiles, the latest in a flurry of Tennessee basketball recruits, fit into new coach Donnie Tyndall’s mix? For starters, Tyndall has no worries about the point guard position if freshman recruit Detrick Mostella doesn’t make it through the NCAA Clearinghouse. Tennessee coaches aren’t too concerned about that, but just in case, Childs, who will graduate from IUPUI with a year of eligibility remaining and can play next season for the Vols,  is a combo guard who has the game to be a facilitator. Like fellow Tennessee recruitRead More

Versatile Baulkman Vols’ latest signee

Tennessee’s roster overhaul continued today when the Vols signed former Southern Miss recruit Devon Baulkman, and though at first glance it may seem as though the Vols are overloaded at the wing positions, the 6-5, 200-pound Baulkman adds length and versatility, commodities new coach Donny Tyndall can always put to good use. “He can play all three perimeter positions, and that versatility will allow him to contribute immediately to our team,” Tyndall said in a release. Asked via text if he planned to use Baulkman at the point, Tyndall respondedRead More