January 2012 Archives

Lady Vols S&D Honored by Swimming World Magazine

The University of Tennessee Lady Vol swimming & diving team's monumental win over No. 2 Florida was selected as the Performance of the Week by Swimming World Magazine.

Versus UF, the Lady Vols were victorious in 12 of the 16 events to win 178-120, which was the programs first victory of the Gators.

Highlights and reaction from Saturday's meet can be seen here, while Swimming World Magazine's announcement can be viewed here.

R.A. Dickey to Receive Award at Thurman Munson Dinner Tonight

The newest member of the Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame and current New York Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey will be presented with a "Thurman" at the 32nd Annual Thurman Munson Awards Dinner held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City tonight. The gala benefits AHRC-New York City Foundation.

The Thurman Award is presented for success on the field of play and philanthropic works off of it. Dickey helps to operate the Ocala, Fla.-based Honoring the Father Ministries which provides medical supplies, powdered milk and baseball equipment to the impoverished in Latin American countries. 

Dickey also recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in early January, helping to raise over $100,000 for Bombay Teen Challenge and its Red Light District Outreach Mumbai effort.

Happy Birthday - Jan. 31: Samuel Davis

Happy Birthday to junior pitcher Samuel Davis of the baseball team on Jan. 31

Tuesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/31)

Tennessee seeks its third win a row against a No. 1 team as the Vols play at top-ranked Kentucky tonight. Check out GAMEDAY CENTRAL: Vols at Kentucky as well as Cuonzo Martin's Monday presser previewing the game:

Here are stories from the media:

- Knoxville News Sentinel: Numbers on Kentucky's side against Vols
- Knoxville News Sentinel: 'Great ones' can win at Rupp
- Chattanooga Times Free Press: Forward Terrence Jones still key for Kentucky
- Chattanooga Times Free Press: Road wins in SEC rare this season

Vol Calls Tonight At Texas Roadhouse At 8 p.m.

Tennessee Head Basketball Coach Cuonzo Martin, Assistant Lady Vols Basketball Coach Dean Lockwood and former Vol and current New Orleans Saints cornerback Jabari Greer will be on "Vol Calls"  tonight at 8 p.m. Eastern / 7 p.m. Central. 

"Vol Calls" originates from the Texas Roadhouse at Turkey Creek in West Knoxville and can be heard across the state on the Vol Network and online at utsports.com. Fans may ask a question by calling 1-800-688-8657 or Verizon customers may dial #TENN. Listeners may also submit a question through the Vol Network-IMG Facebook page.

  • Listen to Vol Calls On UTSports.com/AllAccess
  • Filling in the Blanks

    Records from the early years of the Tennessee baseball program aren't always easy to come by. Because there is no central database for information like game times, locations or in some cases scores, there are a number of holes in the Volunteer record book prior to the 1965 campaign. 

    Fortunately there are Tennessee fans like Mark Aubrey, who runs www.oldknoxvillebaseball.blogspot.com, an online repository for his research regarding the history of baseball in East Tennessee.

    Most recently, Aubrey uncovered an article (pictured below) from "The Journal and Tribune," a Knoxville paper which was published from 1898-1924. The story provided a date for a long-forgotten game against Johnson Bible College. Because of Aubrey's research, we now know that the contest took place on April 17, 1917. 

    While just one piece in the very long process of creating a complete history of Tennessee baseball, Aubrey's research helped us get one step closer. 

    Anyone who has information regarding the early years of the Vol baseball program (specifically before 1965), is encouraged to contact assistant media relations director Cameron Harris at CHarri48@utk.edu. 

    Two Vols Hires Among 247Sports Dozen Best

    Two of Tennessee's hires to the football coaching staff has been named among the Dozen best recruiting hires by 247Sports.

    The addition of Sal Sunseri ranks No. 5 with this analysis:

    The Vols hired Sunseri as their new defensive coordinator and it gives them an instant boost on the recruiting trail, particularly on the Atlantic Coast- an area of the country that is important for Tennessee to sign players. The Vols have to recruit nationally because the state of Tennessee does not produce enough in-state talent on a yearly basis for the program to compete at a high level in the SEC and nationally, so having great recruiters on staff is a must. Sunseri was 247Sports National Recruiter of the Year for the 2011 class when he was at Alabama.

    Jay Graham's return his alma mater comes in at No. 7: 

    Graham is one of the most successful running backs in Vols history and his arrival in Knoxville gives Tennessee an instant staff upgrade from a recruiting standpoint. Historically, the Vols have been able to recruit Graham's home state of North Carolina (he's from Concord) and his presence makes them instantly competitive in that state, particularly in the Charlotte area. Graham was the recruiter of record for running back Marcus Lattimore at his previous stop, South Carolina.

    Monday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/30)

    Vols coach Cuonzo Martin will meet with the media for his Monday luncheon as UT heads to Lexington tonight for tomorrow's game against the No. 1 Wildcats. Here are the latest stories from the media:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: UT's biggest problem: perimeter apathy

    Jackson Has Pass Break-Up In Senior Bowl

    Vols defensive lineman Malik Jackson had a pass break-ups in the Senior Bowl. Check out the entire box score.  Check out this photo of Jackson with his pass break-up from the Press-Register.

    Senior Bowl 2012

    South Team defensive lineman Malik Jackson (97) deflects the pass of North Team quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) of Michigan State during the second quarter of the Senior Bowl at Ladd-Peebles Stadium Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012, in Mobile, Ala. (Press-Register/Mike Kittrell)

    Sunday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/29)

    Tennessee Baseball Briefing

    With the Leadoff Banquet last week and the start of spring practice yesterday, the excitement level about the upcoming Tennessee baseball season is on the upswing. Check out yesterday's Vol Report for everything you need to know about the team's first official practice. Hear what first-year head coach Dave Serrano had to say in the video below.


    Also make sure you check out all of the latest media coverage on the Volunteer baseball team:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Dave Serrano shows high-energy approach at first spring baseball practice
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: From Kilimanjaro back to Knoxville: R.A. Dickey honored at Leadoff Banquet
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Former Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona ready for new challenge
    - VolQuest.com: Dickey, players tout program's direction at UT baseball banquet
    - InsideTennessee.com: Q&A with Terry Francona -

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 28 - Greg Bergeron

    On Jan. 28, we wish happy birthday to associate head baseball coach Greg Bergeron!

    Saturday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/28)

    Saturday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/28)

    The Vols look to continue their strong play in Knoxville as Tennessee hosts Auburn at 6 p.m. Check out GAMEDAY CENTRAL: Vols vs. Auburn and this video preview:

    Here are the latest media stories on the game:

    - Inside Tennessee: Growing pains

    ON TOUR: Williams into Semifinals at Weston (Fla.) Futures

    Former Vol Rhyne Williams earned an easy straight-set win Friday to advance to the semifinals at the Audi Pemproke Pines 10K Futures in Weston, Fla.

    Williams defeated Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka 6-1, 6-3 in his quarterfinal match. He faces Brian Baker in Saturday's semifinals.

    Baker, a Nashville native, is relaunching his career after years of serious elbow and hip injuries. He reached the finals of the Knoxville Challenger in November.

    Williams is currently ranked No. 511 in the world, but he now has earned enough points this year to jump into the ATP top 500 for the first time in his career.

    Next Week at Burnie's: Former Vol John-Patrick Smith will be back in action next week at the Burnie International, a $50,000 Challenger event. It will be the Vols' fourth Challenger since turning pro in July.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 27 - Mans Hjelm, Taber Spani

    On Jan. 27, we wish Happy Birthday to freshman swimmer Mans Hjelm and junior basketball guard Taber Spani.

    Mans Hjelm Taber Spani

    Friday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/27)

    The Vols welcome Auburn to Thompson-Boling Arena for a Saturday match-up at 6 p.m., in a game that will be televised on ESPN2. Check out the latest news on the Vols.

    Updates On Malik Jackson At Senior Bowl Practice

    The Vols Malik Jackson continues to practice for the South team in preparation of this weekend's Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama. 

    Check out these stories on Jackson's progress:

    "I want to show that I play end, that I'm not a slow inside guy that can only rush the guard or the center." Jackson told the National Football Post. "I can come off the edge and handle the run. I want to show that I'm very valuable and I can do a lot for their team, playing defensive end or defensive tackle."

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 26: Swimmer Carolina Simmons

    Happy Birthday on Jan. 26 to swimmer Caroline Simmons.

    Caroline Simmons

    Thursday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/26)

    The Vols return to the practice court today focused on Saturday's foe -- Auburn. Check in on Cuonzo Martin's hoop squad with these stories.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Cuonzo Martin has warning for Vols

    ON TOUR: Williams in Second Round at Weston (Fla.) Futures

    Former Vol Rhyne Williams advanced to the second round of the Audi Pembroke Pines 10K Futures with a straight-set win Tuesday in Weston, Fla.

    He defeated Razvan Sabau of Romania 6-0, 7-6 (5) in his opening match. He faces Olivier Patience of France on Thursday.

    Williams also reached the second round of the $10,000 Futures event last week in Sunrise, Fla., after playing through four rounds of qualifying.

    Fellow former Vol Tennys Sandgren lost 6-3, 7-6 (4) to Andrea Collarini in his first-round match. Sandgren and Williams also lost their first doubles match as well.

    Vol Calls Tonight At Texas Roadhouse At 8 p.m.

    Vol Calls will take place tonight at 8 p.m. Be sure to join us at Texas Roadhouse in Turkey Creek to hear the latest in Tennessee Athletics.

    If you can't make it out, be sure to listen online on UTSports.com/AllAccess.

    New Padded Wall Being Installed at Lindsey Nelson Stadium

    With the 2012 baseball season right around the corner (23 days!), a few changes are being made at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. On Wednesday, installation of a padded, black outfield wall began. The new wall, which will be trimmed in orange, will be a significant aesthetic improvement and provide a much safer surface for players.

    New black, padded wall being installed at Lindsey Nelson Stadium on Twitpic

    New black, padded wall being installed at Lindsey Nelson Stadium on Twitpic

    Malik Jackson Arrives At Senior Bowl Practice

    The Vols Malik Jackson arrived in Mobile on Monday for Senior Bowl practice. Check out these stories on the defensive lineman:

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 25 - Meighan Simmons

    On Jan. 25, we wish Happy Birthday to sophomore guard Meighan Simmons.

    Meighan Simmons

    Wednesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/25)

    Tuesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/24)

    It's gameday as the Vols take on Vanderbilt tonight at 7 p.m. ET. The game airs on ESPNU. 

    Check out these previews of the SEC clash.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Stokes named SEC Freshman of the Week
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols wary of Vanderbilt's Jenkins
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Jarnell Stokes helping Tennessee Vols go inside
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Can Jarnell Stokes stoke tournament run?
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: SEC basketball adds to esteem
    - The Tennessean: Stanton enrolls at Tennessee
    - Clarksville Lef Chronicle: Vols' Stokes on Stallings' radar

    Trio Of Former Vols Headed To Super Bowl

    Three former Vols will be seeking their first Super Bowl rings as the New England Patriots with Shaun Ellis and Jerod Mayo take on the New York Giants with Deon Grant. With the three additions, 73 Vols will have been on Super Bowl rosters. Previously, 30 different UT products have won 37 Super Bowls. 

    Jerod Mayo

    Here are some articles focusing on the three Vols for Life.

    Monday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/23)

    The Vols are still riding high after their second win over a Top 15 team this month, beating both Florida and UConn in two of the last three Saturdays. Here are the latest stories on Cuonzo Martin's squad.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: What will Jarnell Stokes do next?

    Ellis, Grant & Mayo Advance To Super Bowl XLVI

    Three former Vols have advanced to the Super Bowl as the New England Patriots held off the Baltimore Ravens, 23-20 in the AFC Championship Game and the New York Giants beat the San Francisco 49ers, 20-17 in overtime. 

    Jerod Mayo made eight tackles, had a pass defended and a quarterback pressure for the Patriots. Shaun Ellis played, but didn't have a tackle. 

    Ellis and Mayo will be the 71st and 72nd former Vols to play in the Super Bowl. 30 former Vols have combined to win 37 Super Bowls. 

    Deon Grant returns to the Super Bowl with the Giants. He also played in Super Bowl XXXVIII with the Carolina Panthers in 2004. In Sunday's NFC Championship Game, Grant made two tackles in the overtime win. With the 49ers, Parys Haralson made three tackles in defeat. 

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 22: Keesecker, Vereen

    On Jan. 22, we wish Happy Birthday to junior rower Andrea Keesecker and recently graduated football linebacker Daryl Vereen

    Andrea Keesecker  Daryl Vereen

    Sunday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/15)

    Here are the latest stories on the Vols football program:

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Coleman shines in Shrine loss

    East running back Tauren Poole, of Tennessee, pulls in a pass during the fourth quarter of the East-West Shrine Classic NCAA college football game on

    Sunday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/22)

    The Vols Stifled #11 UConn and Won 60-57 on Saturday for the program's four consecutive home win over a defending national champion. Check out all the Postgame Videos including highlights:

    Here are the stories from the media:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols upset No. 13 Connecticut, 60-57
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: What will Jarnell Stokes do next?
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Defense, Stokes key Tennessee upset of UConn
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Jarnell Stokes sparks UT Vols' upset of Huskies
    - Daily News Journal: Stokes leads Vols to upset victory
    - Inside Tennessee: Stokes smokes UConn

    News on the game from Connecticut includes:

    - Norwich Bulletin: Poor shooting dooms Huskies
    - Torrington Register Citizen: No. 13 UConn men lose at Tennessee
    - Waterbury Republican-American: Tennessee 60, UConn men 57: the wrap

    Poole Set For East-West Shrine Game

    Vols tailback Tauren Poole plays in the East-West Shrine Game today at 4 p.m., on the NFL Network. Poole has impressed scouts and coaches all week long. Here are some recent mentions of Poole:

    Saturday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/21)

    Tennessee hosts the defending national champion Connecticut today at 4 p.m., Check out GAMEDAY CENTRAL: Vols vs. UConn. The Vols are 6-2 in their last eight games against a defending champion.

    - Check out this Photo Gallery of fans who camped out for the best seats at today's game.


    Here are the previews from the media:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Jarnell Stokes ready to take his place in starting lineup

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Celebrity guests don't intimidate Vols

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: UConn sporting Pat Summitt T-shirts

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: UT Vols hosting defending champs

    - Associated Press: Vols host yet another ranked foe in No. 13 UConn

    - CBS Sports.com: UConn-Tennessee Preview

    - CBS Sports.com: Martin willing to adjust for frosh Stokes

    - Inside Tennessee: Vols host UConn

    - Nooga.com: Tennessee aims to take down defending champ UConn

    - Volquest: Vols welcome defending champs today

    - Volquest: On the bounce with Bradshaw

    - WBIR: HomeGrown: Bert Bertelkamp

    News out of Connecticut includes:

    - Hartford Courant: Tennessee In Transition, But Still Dangerous, Awaits UConn Men

    - Hartford Courant: No. 13 UConn At Tennessee

    - Greenwich Time: Vols host yet another ranked foe in No. 13 UConn

    - Journal Inquirer: Showing respect

    - Stamford Advocate: UConn men's game day: Saturday at Tennessee

    - The Day: UConn men play at Tennessee

    - Torrington Register Citizen: UConn men face out-of-league test in Tennessee

    - NBC Connecticut: Calhoun Needs More From Big Men

    Saturday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/21)

    John Wilkerson and Mike Keith Discuss UT Baseball

    Tennessee Baseball Hall of Famer Mike Keith and current voice of Vol Baseball John Wilkerson catch up at the 2012 Leadoff Banquet to reminisce about their time together in the booth and talk about the future of the program under new head coach Dave Serrano.

    Tobias Harris Set For Homecoming At Knicks Tonight

    Former Tennessee star and New York native Tobias Harris will play at Madison Square Garden tonight as his Milwaukee Bucks play at the New York Knicks. Check out this feature story on Harris from Newsday: Tobias Harris homecoming at MSG on Friday

    Here is the start of the story: 

    For members of Tobias Harris' family, Friday night will be an occasion they have always dreamed of and yet simply cannot imagine.

    Only two years ago this week, they were watching him play for Half Hollow Hills West in a big high school game. Friday night, they will see him play at Madison Square Garden -- for the Bucks against the Knicks.

    "I can't even explain the feeling," said Torrel Harris, father of Tobias and his five siblings. "It's really just a spiritual feeling. Honestly, I think I'm in a dream. I just feel like it's such a blessing. Seeing him play in Madison Square Garden, I just might break down."

    Friday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/20)

    The Vols host #11 UConn on Saturday at 4 p.m., before a national television audience on CBS. Here are some stories on Cuonzo Martin's squad. The game is the men's 'We Back Pat' contest.

    - Gainesville Sun: Q&A with Trae Golden
    - CBS Sports.com: UConn-Tennessee Preview

    Dickey, Francona Speeches from Leadoff Banquet

    Nearly 1,000 Tennessee fans were on hand Wednesday night at the 2012 Leadoff Banquet, presented by Coca-Cola, where they were able to hear from former Vol and current New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey as well as two-time World Series champion manager with the Boston Red Sox and current ESPN analyst Terry Francona.

    Brothers in Baseball: Blake and Logan Forsythe

    Memphis Commercial Appeal sports columnist Geoff Calkins recently intervied former Vol catcher Blake Forsythe and his brother Logan, currently a second baseman for the San Diego Padres, for "Sports Files" on WKNO.

    Blake, a Memphis native, talks about why he chose Tennessee, his first Volunteer football game, his first season in professional baseball, his goals moving forward and much more.

    Vote for Chris Lofton!

    Former Vol Chris Lofton is one of 10 finalists for hit ESPN show SportsNation's best 3-point shooters contest. To vote for Lofton, click here and rank Chris as No. 1 on your ballot. Below are some highlights of Lofton's 3-point feats:

    Thursday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/19)

    The Vols dropped a 57-53 overtime decision at Georgia on Wednesday night. Watch highlights here

    Check out these media stories:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Georgia beats Tennessee, 57-53 in overtime
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Vols let one slip away in Athens
    - Associated Press: Georgia protects 'home court'
    - Inside Tennessee: Dawgs bite Vols, 57-53
    - Atlanta Journal Constitution: Thornton returns as Bulldogs beat Tennessee 57-53
    - Macon Telegraph: Georgia garners first SEC win

    Tauren Poole Shining In East-West Shrine Practices

    Vols tailback Tauren Poole Will Play In East-West Shrine Game this Saturday at 4 p.m. on the NFL Network. Poole is garnering attention in practices this week. Check out these stories with mentions of Poole. 

    Tauren Poole

    RB Tauren Poole, Tennessee: After a slow start, Poole has really separated himself as the top running back on either squad. He runs with low pad level and quickness through the line of scrimmage, routinely getting to the second level. Poole had an up-and-down 2011 campaign, which is why he isn't at the Senior Bowl, but he has been running tough, decisive and quick with smooth acceleration in practices.

    On SI.com:

    Tauren Poole, RB, Tennessee -- Poole established himself as the top running back at the Shrine Game on Tuesday, then further affirmed this opinion in the minds of scouts today. He displayed incredible quickness and elusiveness every time he touched the ball, and also showed the uncanny knack to get past the line of scrimmage and through open running lanes without being touched by a defender. In the open field he showed a burst of speed and the ability to catch the ball. It was another terrific day for the Volunteer product.

    On NFL.com

    Evaluating running backs during all-star game practices is difficult because defenders are not allowed to test their ability to avoid or ward off tackles. But Tennessee tailback Tauren Poole showed off his SEC pedigree Wednesday. He showed very good quickness and wiggle in the hole as well as enough speed to turn the corner if no openings were available inside. He's smooth running after the catch, too, and his pad level helps him run through contact. His hands as a receiver are natural, with one juggle on a red-zone screen as the only blemish. Poole's numbers dropped off in 2011 behind a below-average Volunteers offensive line (1,034 yards, 11 TD in 2010; 693 and 5 in 2011), but there's little doubt he's the top talent at the position on either team this week and could be a great Saturday find during draft weekend.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 19: Soccer's Lexi Krause

    On Jan. 19, we wish Happy Birthday to Lexi Krause, freshman midfielder on the soccer team. 

    Lexi Krause

    2012 Leadoff Banquet Tonight

    The 2012 Tennessee Baseball Leadoff Banquet, presented by Coca-Cola, will take place tonight at the Knoxville Convention Center. The event will open with a reception and silent auction at 5 p.m., followed by dinner at 6 p.m. and the start of the program at 6:30 p.m.

    Fresh off of his journey to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, former Vol and current New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey will become the 18th person inducted into the Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame. 

    Former Boston Red Sox manager and two-time World Series champion Terry Francona will also serve as the featured speaker. Andrew Gribble of the Knoxville News Sentinel caught up with Francona to preview tonight's banquet.

    Vols In The NBA Update (1/18)

    At the NBA season continues, here's a look at former Vols in the league. 

    Tobias Harris had his second-best scoring game of the young season in last night's Bucks 105-95 loss to Denver. Harris scored 14 points and grabbed a pro-best eight rebounds along with three assists in a season-high 27 minutes. 

    Harris is averaging 8.1 points and 3.1 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per night in seven games after missing the first few games of the season with dehydration. 

    C.J. Watson, who is in his second year with the Bulls, had his best game of the young season last night in a 118-97 win over Phoenix as he scored 23 points, handed out five assists and grabbed four rebounds in a 33 minutes. Watson has tallied 40 points in the last two games as he is seeing more time with Chicago. 

    For the year, Watson is averaging 10.1 points and 3.6 assists in seven games with a start in 18.4 minutes per game. 

    Wednesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/18)

    Tonight, Tennessee is at Georgia, check out GAMEDAY CENTRAL: Vols at Georgia as well as these previews of the SEC match-up, which tips at 8 p.m.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols have Georgia on their mind
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Vols try tonight for first road victory
    - Inside Tennessee: Point of no return
    - Atlanta Journal Constitution: New-look Tennessee faces struggling Bulldogs
    - Huntsville Times: Inside the SEC

    Hochevar Signs $3.51 million deal with Royals

    Former Vol and current starting pitcher for the Kansas City Royals, Luke Hochevar avoided arbitration by agreeing to a $3.51 million contract for the 2012 season on Tuesday, according to the Kansas City Star.

    Hochevar, 28, posted an 11-11 record with a 4.68 ERA in 31 starts in 2011, setting career highs in innings (198.0) and strikeouts (128).

    In his three years at Tennessee, Hochevar compiled a 25-10 record with a 3.05 ERA in 51 career appearances, including 33 starts. In 280.1 total innings, he struck out 287 and held opposing hitters to a .232 batting average. 

    In 2005, he was named the SEC Pitcher of the Year and won the Roger Clemens Award after tallying a 15-3 record with a 2.26 ERA while leading the Vols to the 2005 College World Series.

    Hunter Listed Among SEC's 'Scariest' On ESPN.com

    There is always that player you don't want to line up against. 

    That player who terrifies opposing players with his size, speed or shear strength. He can plow a quarterback into the turf at will or can ram his way through a line before choosing to run over linebackers instead of around them. 

    Unleashing pain is a must in his game. Without it, he leaves the field unsatisfied. 

    Check out this list SEC's five scariest players for 2012 from Edward Aschoff, which includes Tennessee's Justin Hunter at No. 5 

    5. Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee: Hunter was sidelined for most of the year with a season-ending knee injury, but when he was on the field, he frightened defensive backs. He was arguably the league's best deep threat when he was healthy, catching 17 passes for 314 yards (18.5 yards per catch) and two touchdowns. He was even scarier in 2010, when he caught just 16 passes for 415 yards (25.9) and seven touchdowns. Hunter should be full speed next season, so expect a few defenders to get a good luck at his last name next fall. Covering him is an issue and keeping up with him once he has the ball might be even harder.

    ON TOUR: Smith Starts Doubles at Australian Open

    Former Vol John-Patrick Smith faces a pair of veterans to start doubles play Wednesday at the Australian Open in Melbourne.

    Smith and fellow Aussie Greg Jones take on Leander Paes of India and Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic in the opening round. 

    The match is the fourth on court 7, which is unfortunately not one of ESPN's seven televised courts. With the 16-hour time difference, matches begin Tuesday at 7 p.m. Eastern. Live scoring is available at australianopen.com.

    Smith is currently ranked No. 588 in the world in doubles, having won three Futures titles last year with former Vol Ben Rogers. The Australian Open marks the first pro tournament in which Smith has played doubles without Rogers, the 2005 All-American. Jones is ranked No. 284.

    Paes is a true veteran in the doubles world and is currently seventh in the ATP rankings. He has been a runner up three times, including last season, and has six Grand Slam titles, his last one coming in the 2009 US Open.

    Stepanek, a former top-10 singles player, is currently ranked No. 91 in doubles and has appeared in the Australian Open doubles draw four times. His best result was a quarterfinal appearance in 2007.

    Happy Birthday - Jan 17: Dowd, Porteous, Radford, Sapp

    | 1 Comment

    A quartet of birthdays among Tennessee student-athletes on Jan. 17. Celebrating are senior soccer forward Emily Dowd, senior golfer Garrick Porteous, junior rower Evelyn Radford and sophomore football linebacker Dontavis Sapp.

    Emily Dowd  Garrick Porteous  Evelyn Radford  Dontavis Sapp

    Tuesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/17)

    ON TOUR: Williams Downs Domijan to Move to Main Draw

    Former Vol Rhyne Williams earned a close win on a former college foe Monday to earn a spot in the main draw of the Sunrise (Fla.) Futures.

    Williams beat Virginia sophomore Alex Domijan 6-3, 7-6 (5) in the fourth and final round of qualifying to move into the main draw. The two had previously faced each other in the first round of the 2010 USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships, a meeting Williams won on his way to taking the tournament title.

    Williams, ranked No. 511, will face Romania's Gabriel Moraru in the first round.

    Williams and fellow Vol Tennys Sandgren begin doubles play Wednesday against top-seeded Jack Sock and Nick Monroe, who beat the Tennessee pair in the Futures last week in Plantation, Fla.

    Sandgren will not be joining Williams in the main draw of singles. He lost his final qualifying match 7-5, 6-4 to former Florida Gator Antoine Benneteau.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 16: Kennedy Higdon, Troy Tillman

    On Jan. 16, we wish Happy Birthday to a pair of sophomore swimmers Kennedy Higdon and Troy Tillman.

    Kennedy Higdon  Troy Tillman

    Johnson In Casino Del Sol All-Star Game Tonight At 8 p.m.

    Tennessee linebacker Austin Johnson will play in the Casino Del Sol All-Star Game on Monday night at 8 p.m. ET. Johnson will be wearing his familiar No. 40 for the East All-Stars. 
    The game airs on various channels nationwide including SportSouth in the Southeast. The game also airs nationally on Fox College Sports as well as on Fox Sports Arizona, Fox Sports Southwest Plus and Fox Sports Houston Plus. 

    For more on Johnson, check out this story from UTSports.com: Johnson Set For College All-Star Game

    Johnson is shown in this photo on the far right side, notice his orange glove, from practice this week. 

    ON TOUR: Williams, Sandgren in Final Qualifying Round

    Former Vols Rhyne Williams and Tennys Sandgren both won again in routine straight sets Monday to reach the final qualifying round at the Sunrise (Fla.) Futures.

    Williams defeated American Jared Hiltzik 6-4, 6-1 in his third-round match, while Sandgren beat Czech Republic's Libor Salaba 6-3, 6-3.

    Williams' final qualifying round match has the potential to one of the best matchups of the entire tournament as the two-time All-American is set to play Virginia sophomore Alex Domijan. Williams and Domijan last met in the 2010 USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships. With Domijan the top seed and unbeaten in his college career, Williams excelled in the critical moments and won 7-6, 7-6 in their only college clash.

    Sandgren plays former Florida Gator Antoine Benneteau in his final match. Benneteau beat Sandgren last week at the Plantation (Fla.) Futures.

    Monday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/16)

    The Vols' near-upset of No. 2 Kentucky on Saturday continues to garner attention from the media. Here are a few follow-up stories on the basketball team.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Team chemistry fine with Jarnell Stokes
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Calipari impressed with Vols
    - ESPN.com: Weekly Watch

    Former Vols To Enter Chattanooga Sports Hall of Fame

    Two former Vols stars are part of the class that enter the Greater Chattanooga Sports Hall of Fame on Feb. 27. Bill Emendorfer and Herman Weaver along with former baseball assistant coach Larry Simcox will be enshrined. 

    The Chattanooga Times Free Press has the full story: Local Sports Hall Adding 22.

    Tickets for the 6:30 p.m. banquet cost $35 and are available through Hall of Fame president John Farr at 423-875-9282.

    Here's more on the former Vols: 

    Emendorfer was the state heavyweight wrestling champion in 1968 and the runner-up the next year, after a senior football season in which he was captain of Cleveland's first state-title team and second undefeated squad in a row. A two-way lineman, he was the player of the year in East Tennessee and listed among the top 10 high school All-Americans, and he went on to UT and was the runner-up for Southeastern Conference freshman of the year and then started every game for Vols teams that went 31-5 (best in the country for those three years) with three bowl wins and three top-10 finishes. He was a first-team All-SEC guard and received All-America honorable mention as a senior.

    Weaver, nicknamed "Thunderfoot," had an 11-year NFL career with the Lions and Seahawks and made two Pro Bowl appearances. Moving to the Chattanooga area as an adult, he was a high school football coach at Notre Dame and Chattanooga Valley and for years has been involved in sports ministry. An all-around athlete, he was an all-state tight end and all-state basketball player for Villa Rica (Ga.) High School before becoming an All-America punter for UT.

    Simcox starred at East Ridge High School and Cleveland State Community College before becoming an All-SEC shortstop with Ole Miss and being drafted by the Houston Astros. He made it to the Southern League as a player but had what became a career-ending knee injury in May 1983, and then he spent two decades as an assistant coach at Ole Miss and Tennessee. He was with two Vols teams that finished third in the College World Series.

    Vols In The NFL Playoffs Update (1/16)

    The final four of the NFL Playoffs are set and two more former Vols punched their tickets for a chance to play in Super Bowl XLVI.

    The Ravens held off the Texans, 20-13 despite a huge day from former Vol Arian Foster. The running back gained 154 total yards (27-132 rushing and 5-22 receiving) but it wasn't enough for Houston. Foster also scored a TD on a 1-yard rush (WATCH HIGHLIGHT). On defense Jason Allen had a pass defended for the Texans. With the Ravens, Morgan Cox snapped 14 times on kicks and punts for Baltimore as they will face New England in the AFC Championship.

    Deon Grant and the New York Giants pulled off the 37-20 upset win at Green Bay. Grant had the game-sealing interception (VIDEO: Grant's pick seals victory) along with six tackles. With the Packers, former Vols Scott Wells started at center and Chad Clifton draw the nod at left tackle. New York will play San Francisco next Sunday. 

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 15: Kia Jackson, Parker Wormsley

    On Jan. 15, we wish Happy Birthday to junior track & field performer Kia Jackson and freshman baseball infielder Parker Wormsley.

    Kia Jackson

    Vols In The NFL Playoffs Update (1/15)

    Saturday's Division Playoffs brought us an instant classic and a run-away. 

    - The 49ers rallied late to escape with a 36-32 win over the Saints. Parys Haralson and San Francisco head to the NFC Championship game with the win. Haralson had a tackle for the Niners. 

    With the Saints, Jabari Greer had a tackle and a pass defended. Robert Meachem made three catches for 18 yards. Aubrayo Franklin also started as nose tackle, but had no stats. Turk McBride was inactive.

    - The Patriots routed the Broncos, 45-10. Four former  Vols were in the game and made impacts. With the winning Patriots, Jerod Mayo made nine tackles including a TFL. Shaun Ellis had a tackle for a sack and TFL. He also had a quarterback hurry.

    With the Broncos, who saw their season end, Britton Colquitt punted seven times for a 38.9 average. Robert Ayers made two tackles. 

    Sunday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/15)

    Check in on the latest from the Vols' football squad including some features on the impact of Jay Graham joining the coaching staff.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Jay Graham can sell UT from the heart
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Graham unable to resist return to UT
    - Inside Tennessee: 'A product of what I'm selling'

    Sunday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/15)

    The Tough Vols Dropped A 65-62 Decision To #2 Kentucky in Knoxville yesterday. Get all the latest on the game. Check out game highlights.

    Here are the stories from the media:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols progressing, despite recent losses
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: UT Vols nearly clip Cats
    - Inside Tennessee: Jarnell shines but Cats win
    - Maryvile Daily Times: Wildcats hold off Vols for SEC win
    - Tennessee Journalist: Vols upset bid falls short, 65-62
    - SI.com: College Notebook
    - Lexington Herald Leader: UK men at Tennessee
    - Lexington Herald Leader: Kentucky displaying record-setting balance

    ON TOUR: Williams, Sandgren in Futures Qualifying

    Former Vols Rhyne Williams and Tennys Sandgren each won again in straight sets Saturday to advance to the third round of qualifying at the Sunrise (Fla.) Futures.

    Williams, the No. 2 seed in qualifying, beat Dennis Novikov 7-5, 6-3. Sandgren, the No. 4 seed, earned a quick 6-2, 6-2 victory over Justin Lunn.

    The third round qualifying continues Sunday as Williams faces American Jared Hiltzik and Sandgren takes on Libor Salaba of the Czech Republic.

    Stokes & McBee Trend On Twitter

    During the Vols game with No. 2 Kentucky on Saturday both Jarnell Stokes and Skylar McBee were trending on Twitter. Stokes was trending both Worldwide and in the United States. In addition to Stokes' name, the phrase "Size 20" was trending in reference to Stokes' shoe size.


    RA Dickey: Reaching the Summit

    R.A. Dickey has reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro! Read his first-hand account of the final day of his ascent on his blog for the New York Times.

    Here is an excerpt from his most recent blog:

    We had done it! We gave hugs and high-fives all around above the clouds at the highest point in Africa.

    The view was unforgettably magnificent, as incredible as anything I have ever seen. But as I took time to contemplate, I realized that the reason the view was so rich was the overall experience of the trek. We had walked approximately 40 miles and climbed 13,000 feet since the beginning of the journey, overcoming all kinds of adversities. All the while, we were building relationships with everyone from the porters to one another, sharing in our triumphs and helping one another in times of need.

    A former Vol and current pitcher for the New York Mets, Dickey will be inducted in to the Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame at the 2012 Leadoff Banquet on Wednesday.

    Dickey is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization that rescues and cares for women and girls in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused and exploited.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 14: Max Arnold, Ed Walsh

    On Jan. 14, we wish Happy Birthday to sophomore quarterback Max Arnold and junior freestyle swimmer Ed Walsh.

    Max Arnold  Ed Walsh

    Saturday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/14)

    Tons of football news on the Vols as Derek Dooley held a Friday Press Conference after the Vols Named Sunseri Defensive Coordinator. Check out the latest stories on gridiron squad.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Sunseri crucial hire for Dooley
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Number of Vols not back with team
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Sunseri hire a win for UT Vols
    - Inside Tennessee: Dooley speaks out

    Saturday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/14)

    Check out GAMEDAY CENTRAL: Vols vs. Kentucky as ESPN will be in town for  the 12 Noon clash today. Exactly 62 years ago, on Jan. 14, 1950, an unranked Tennessee squad defeated second-ranked Kentucky 66-53 in Knoxville. 

    Sunseri's Hire Trends Worldwide On Twitter

    The hiring of Sal Sunseri Defensive Coordinator by the Vols was briefly trending Worldwide on Twitter this morning around 11:30 a.m. His name was trending as high as third Worldwide and in the United States. "Sal Sunseri" was trending with the likes of #Fridaythe13th, Paula Deen, Today Is Friday, Manny Ramirez, Judith Light and Happy Swift Day.

    Friday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/13)

    Vols' head coach Derek Dooley will meet with the media on Friday at 3:30 p.m., to discuss recent developments with the program. You can watch the press conference live on UTSports.com/AllAccess.

    Here are some stories on the hiring of new offensive line coach Sam Pittman.

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Vols tab Pittman as OL coach
    - Inside Tennessee: Hiestand out, Pittman in

    Friday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/13)

    The Vols Lost 62-58 At #20 Mississippi State, last night. Get your full recap with highlights, stats, notes, quotes, photos and more.

    Here are stories from the media:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Mississippi State blocks Vols, 62-58

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols are pushed, but not a pushover

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Tough loss in Starkville

    - Associated Press: Tennessee falls to No. 20 Mississippi St, 62-58

    - Jackson Clarion Ledger: What we learned in Starkville

    - Jackson Clarion Ledger: Bulldogs put pieces together

    - CBS Sports.com: Bost's late steal lifts No. 20 Miss St. over Vols

    - CBS Sports.com: Vols turn to Richardson to backup point

    - Fox Sports Tennessee: Vols downed by Bost, Bulldogs' late steal

    - GoVols247: State slips by Vols, 62-58

    - Inside Tennessee: Hoops heartbreaker

    - Nooga.com: Golden turnover costly as Vols lose to Bulldogs

    - Rocky Top Talk: Vols Hang Tough, Fall 62-58 in Starkville

    - Volquest: Quick takes on a near steal in Starkville

    - Volquest: Vols fall just short in Starkville

    - WTVC:  Vols Lose at Mississippi State

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 12: Connolly, Dailey, McAdoo

    On Jan. 12, we wish Happy Birthday to senior swimmer Jenny Connolly, senior sprinter Deaundra Dailey and freshman thrower Deon McAdoo.

    Jenny Connolly  Deaundra Dailey  Deon McAdoo

    Thursday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/12)

    The Vols Added Seven New Team Members on Wednesday as classes began at UT. Check out some stories on the football additions:

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: New Vols check in, ready for classes

    Thursday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/12)

    The Vols takes on Mississippi State tonight at the Hump in Starkville. Tip-off is set for 9 p.m., as the game will show on ESPN2 and can be heard on the Vol Network. 

    Here are previews and stories from the media as well a news on the addition of Cory Stanton to the Tennessee roster: 

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Josh Richardson brings fearless flair to Vols

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Cuonzo Martin says Cory Stanton 'high-character kid we want'

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Vols look to end road woes as No. 20 MSU set to host UT

    - GoVols247: Freshman 'mama's boy' helping Vols

    - Rocky Top Talk: Tennessee at Mississippi State Preview

    - Volquest: Vols look for big road win

    - CBSSports.com: Tennessee-Mississippi St. Preview

    - WBIR: UT picks up walk-on point guard from Clemson

    - Jackson Sun: UT's Richardson can prove ability tonight against Miss. State

    - Commercial Dispatch: Ready to move on, MSU faces Tennessee at Humphrey Coliseum

    - Commercial Dispatch: MSU's Bost needs guard help

    - Jackson Clarion Ledger: Opponents putting focus on Moultrie

    - GenesPage.com: Dogs Look For Right Re-Start To SEC Season

    - Lexington Herald-Leader: The SEC road is no place to lollygag

    RA Dickey: Summit in Sight

    Former Vol and current New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey, who will be inducted into the Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame at the 2012 Leadoff Banquet on Jan. 18, is nearing the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. He posted another entry on his New York Times blog, detailing his last two days of hiking and his thoughts about closing in on his goal.

    Here is an excerpt from his most recent blog: 

    When we got to Barafu camp, we were treated to vistas that defied our small scope of the world and its wonders. Before us, thousands of feet below, stretched cumulus cloud banks that looked like a never-ending field of the softest cotton one can imagine.

    To our right sat Mount Meru, suspended above the clouds like a giant rocky temple. To our left were the sharp peaks of Mount Mawenzi, another of the Kilimanjaro volcanoes.

    Being exposed to such majesty is humbling and begs me to contemplate how finite I really am.

    Dickey is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization that rescues and cares for women and girls in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused and exploited.

    Vols One Of 2 Schools With Players On All 8 NFL Playoff Teams

    Tennessee and Miami (Fla.) are the only two schools to have active players on all eight remaining teams in the NFL Playoffs. The Vols (15) are second to the Hurricanes (18) in overall number of active players still competing in the playoffs according to NFL.com's rosters.

    Tennessee is guaranteed of having a Super Bowl XLVI champion this year.

    The following former Vols are still competing in the postseason: 

    Baltimore: Morgan Cox
    Denver: Robert Ayers, Britton Colquitt
    Green Bay: Chad Clifton, Scott Wells
    Houston: Jason Allen, Arian Foster
    New England: Shaun Ellis, Jerod Mayo
    New York Giants: Deon Grant
    New Orleans: Jabari Greer, Aubrayo Franklin, Robert Meachem, Turk McBride
    San Francisco: Parys Haralson

    Here's a look at the top programs with players still competing in the postseason:

    Miami (Fla.): 18
    Tennessee: 15
    Ohio State: 12
    Boston College: 10
    Alabama: 9
    Notre Dame: 9
    Oregon: 9
    Texas: 9

    Here are the numbers for SEC schools:

    Tennessee: 15
    Alabama: 9
    Florida: 8
    LSU: 7
    Arkansas: 6
    Georgia: 6
    Auburn: 5
    Mississippi State: 4
    Ole Miss: 4
    South Carolina: 4
    Kentucky: 3
    Vanderbilt: 0

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 11: Dixon, Jackson, Reese

    A trio of birthdays on Jan. 11: junior runner Breon Dixon, senior All-SEC defensive lineman  Malik Jackson and redshirt freshman tennis player Hunter Reese.

    Breon Dixon  Malik Jackson  Hunter Reese

    Wednesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/11)

    The Vols head to Starkville, Miss., today for tomorrow's ESPN2 match-up with the Mississippi State Bulldogs. Here are the latest stories from the media.

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Jarnell Stokes on floor at UT
    - Inside Tennessee: On the rise

    News on the Bulldogs includes:
    - Jackson Clarion Ledger: Opponents putting focus on Moultrie
    - Jackson Clarion Ledger: Dogs expecting more pressing
    - Memphis Commercial Appeal: Tuesday Talk with Rick Stansbury - Jan. 10

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 10: Allen, Austin, Bubis, Steckenrider

    On Jan. 10, we wish Happy Birthday to four UT student-athletes: football's junior Zack Allen and sophomore Scott Bubis, junior rower Paige Austin and baseball junior Drew Steckenrider.

    Zack Allen  Scott Bubis  Paige Austin  Drew Steckenrider

    ON TOUR: Smith Set for Australian Open Qualifying

    Former Vol John-Patrick Smith will make his career Grand Slam debut Wednesday in the qualifying draw of the Australian Open in Melbourne.

    Smith, who received one of eight of Tennis Australia's qualifying wildcards, faces Furrukh Dustov of Uzbekistan in the opening round Wednesday at 10 a.m. on Show Court 3.

    Because of the great time difference, those who want to keep up with the action live in the United States can tune in Tuesday at 6 p.m. Eastern. Smith's match is scheduled to be live streamed by AO TV at this link.

    Dustov is currently ranked No. 262 in the world. After just six months on the tour, Smith is already ranked No. 437.

    Tuesday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/10)

    Here's a look at some football news surrounding the Vols' football program:

    - GoVols247 has a story on relationship between coach Derek Dooley and Athletic Director Dave Hart: Dooley: Dialogue with Hart 'great'

    - The Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle has a feature on the relationship between 1980s Vols Kelly Ziegler and the late Harry Galbreath: Ziegler honored to share memories of friend, teammate.

    Tuesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/10)

    On Monday, Cuonzo Martin had his Press Luncheon, which you can watch here: Martin Press Conference along with Josh Richardson. The newest member of the Vols, Jarnell Stokes, practiced for the first time, you can check out a gallery of practice photos from Monday as well as these stories from the media.

    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Jarnell Stokes on floor at UT
    - Inside Tennessee: Piano player
    - Memphis Commercial Appeal: Jarnell Stokes works out with Vols

    ON TOUR: Williams, Sandgren Start 2012 in Florida

    Former Vols Rhyne Williams and Tennys Sandgren start their 2012 professional tennis season Tuesday with the Plantation Open, a $10,000 Futures event in Plantation, Fla.

    Williams starts the day by facing sixth-seeded Nicolas Devilder of France. Sandgren has the day off in singles; he is scheduled to play qualifier and former Florida Gator Antoine Benneteau of France on Wednesday.

    In the afternoon, Williams and Sandgren team up again in doubles to take on the No. 2 seeds: Americans Nick Monroe and Jack Sock. Williams and Sandgren, who live and train together in Boca Raton, Fla., won a Futures doubles title together last year in Canada and reached the final in another.

    RA Dickey: Moments of Awe

    This year's Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame inductee and current New York Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey continues his trek up Mount Kilimanjaro. He checked in once again in his blog for the New York Times to describe his ascent to Barranco Camp after 22 miles and 14,380 feet of hiking.

    Here is an excerpt from his most recent blog:

    Thankfully, my journey thus far has not solely been glimpses of my own mortality, but also of great splendor and beauty. Never have these words been more useful to me than in my attempt to describe the sights of the past two days.

    Dickey is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization that rescues and cares for women and girls in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused and exploited.

    Harris Scores 15 In Second NBA Game

    In just his second NBA game, Tobias Harris made a major impact with the Milwaukee Bucks in leading the team in scoring with 15 points as his team lost 109-93 at Phoenix.

    Harris made 4-of-8 from the floor and 7-of-10 from the foul line with four rebounds and two assists. 

    Here are a few stories on the game:

    Here's a snipet on Harris from Brew Hoop: 
    After making his long-awaited debut last night against the Clippers and getting only 8 minutes and 39 seconds on the court, the Bucks' first-round pick logged 23 minutes and made them all count against the Suns. Whether slashing to the rim, banging on the block or working the mid-range game, Harris kept most of his opportunities in quality zones on the court and wound up with 10 free throw attempts to show for his trouble. His 15 points on 4-8 shooting and 7-10 from the line continues to provide hope that he can make positive contributions to the team early in his NBA career. His +11 differential may be a bit misleading, considering the bulk of his minutes came when the game had already floated beyond the grasp of the team, but he left no reason to doubt his abilities in his first extended look in a regular season NBA game.

    Vols In NFL Playoffs Update (1/9)

    With this weekend's NFL playoff results, it is ensured that a former Vol will win the Super Bowl in 2012. All remaining eight teams feature a former UT player on their rosters. Here's a look at Sunday's former Vols in action in the postseason.

    In the Broncos thrilling 29-23 overtime win over the Steelers, three Vols saw action. With the winning Broncos, Robert Ayers made a major impact on defense with three tackles including two sacks for 24 yards, two TFLs and three quarterback hurries. Ayers sacked the Steelers' Ben Rothlisberger on the final play of regulation for a 15-yard loss. Check out highlights of Ayers two sacks: WATCH HIGHLIGHTWATCH HIGHLIGHT.

    Britton Colquitt punted the ball four times for a 41.0 average with one inside the 20-yard line. With the Steelers, Ramon Foster started on the offensive line at his usual right guard position.

    The Giants advanced with a 24-2 win over the Falcons. On defense, Deon Grant made three tackles and had a pass defended for New York.

    Next weekend's Divisional Playoffs pit the following former Vols against each other:

    Saturday, Jan. 14 at 4:30 p.m. (FOX) 
    New Orleans (Aubrayo Franklin, Jabari Greer, Turk McBride, Robert Meachem) at
    San Francisco (Parys Haralson)

    Saturday, Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. (CBS)
    Denver (Robert Ayers, Britton Colquitt) at
    New England (Shaun Ellis, Jerod Mayo)

    Sunday, Jan. 15 at 1 p.m. (CBS)
    Houston (Jason Allen, Arian Foster) at
    Baltimore (Morgan Cox)

    Sunday, Jan. 15 at 4:30 p.m. (FOX)
    New York Giants (Deon Grant) at 
    Green Bay (Chad Clifton, Scott Wells)

    Monday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/9)

    Coach Cuonzo Martin will meet with the media this afternoon in Thompson-Boling Arena. Check out this feature story from the Knoxville News Sentinel: Jeronne Maymon is UT's 'anchor on the defensive end' after the Vols knocked off #13 Florida on Saturday. 

    Monday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/9)

    The Chattanooga Times Free Press has a feature on the Vols' rising junior quarterback Tyler Bray this morning: Vols' QB Tyler Bray uses break to regroup for 2012

    Sunday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/8)

    The Knoxville News Sentinel has a look at five impact freshmen from 2011 who will be keys to the 2012 Vols season. Check out Austin Ward's story: Playing young guys early in their careers proves a solid building block for Vols.

    Here is the start:

    Tennessee's football team couldn't afford to wait on its freshmen. Those young guys also had no interest in waiting to produce.

    That combination didn't help the Vols finish the season with a bowl bid, but after again getting so many first-year players on the field and knocking out a few growing pains quickly, they could be in much better position to make a run moving forward in Derek Dooley's third season.

    Assuming the development continues as planned for UT, starting with these five players after productive debut seasons, the program could be in good hands when the freshman label is officially shed and they return as experienced sophomores.

    Sunday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/8)

    Check out all the latest stories on the Vols Huge Win Over The #13 Gators, 67-56. Watch the highlights of the game below: 

    Here are the media's stories on the win for Tennessee:

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols shock No. 13 Gators
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Upset of Florida pays dividends
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: "It's a whole new season" for BallerVols
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Tennessee Vols shock Florida Gators, 67-56
    - Daily News Journal: Vols stun No. 13 Florida
    - ESPN.com: Vols upset Gators
    - Inside Tennessee: Vols stun Gators

    Tobias Harris Scores Four In NBA Debut With Bucks

    Former Vols star Tobias Harris made his NBA debut on Saturday night as he scored four points in nine minutes off the bench for the Milwaukee Bucks in a 92-86 loss at the Los Angeles Clippers. He also had a rebound and a steal.

    Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin, left, rejects a shot by Milwaukee Bucks forward Tobias Harris during the first half of their NBA basketball game, Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) Harris goes up for a shot against Blake Griffin. (AP)

    Here 's what the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel wrote about Harris' debut: 

    The game marked the NBA debuts of two Bucks players, first-round draft pick Tobias Harris and rookie Darington Hobson.

    Harris was on a 10-minute limit as he played his first game after suffering dehydration and muscle soreness. He finished with four points, two fouls and one steal in 9 minutes. He played 5 minutes at the start of the second quarter and 4 minutes to open the final period.

    "I felt good," Harris said. "It was good to just be out there, be playing and be active with the guys.

    "I was being aggressive out there, just bring a scoring threat and play my role."

    Harris said he hopes he can continue to build his minutes while he gets back in playing shape after being out more than three weeks.

    "I thought he was OK for his first time," Skiles said. "He got a couple quick baskets. I would have liked to play him more.

    "I'm hopeful in the next day or so there won't be any time restrictions and we can get him out there for some more minutes."

    Vols In NFL Playoffs Update (1/8)

    It was a huge day for former Vols in the NFL Playoffs on Saturday. Arian Foster raced for 153 yards and two touchdowns as the Texans topped the Bengals, 31-10 while Robert Meachem had 111 receiving yards and two touchdowns while Jabari Greer had two interceptions as their Saints marched past Detroit, 45-28.

    In addition to Foster's big day on offense, Jason Allen also made five tackles on defense for Houston. 

    From the Texans' win, check out these video highlights: Foster 42-yard TD runFoster 8-yard TD run and this postgame interview with Foster: Foster-ing smiles in Houston

    Also, here are some feature stories on the back, who became just the third undrafted free agent to gain 100 rushing yards in an NFL playoff game on Saturday:

    From New Orleans, it was a huge game for two former Vols as Robert Meachem hauled in four passes for 111 yards including a 56-yard touchdown. Jabari Greer made seven tackles and picked off two Matthew Stafford passes. Aubrayo Franklin made a tackle on defense. 

    Here are some feature stories on the former Vols in the Bayou.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 8: Tyler Anderson, Jake Storey

    On Jan. 8, we wish Happy Birthday to track & field freshman Tyler Anderson and senior football linebacker Jake Storey.

    Tyler Anderson  Jake Storey

    RA Dickey: Kilimanjaro in Sight

    Former Vol and current New York Met R.A. Dickey is now two days into his ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro. He checked in from the Shira plateau in his most recent blog for the New York Times.

    Here is an excerpt from today's post: 

    I think I know now how Bilbo Baggins must have felt in Tolkien's "The Hobbit." My companions and I have set out on our own mountainous journey to try to attain a treasure.

    The treasure in our case is not a pile of gold guarded by a dragon, but rather the gratification that comes with reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.

    Dickey is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization that rescues and cares for women and girls in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused and exploited.

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 7: Fickey, Jeter, Stokes

    A trio of birthdays among UT student-athletes today. Celebrating on Jan. 7 are freshman tennis player Brandon Fickey, volleyball senior Kayla Jeter and the newest member of the Vols, basketball freshman Jarnell Stokes.

    Brandon Fickey  Kayla Jeter  Jarnell Stokes

    Saturday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/7)

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 6: Tavis Bailey

    On Jan. 6, we wish Happy Birthday to track & field thrower Tavis Bailey.

    Tavis Bailey

    RA Dickey: In the Presence of the Mountain

    Former Tennessee All-American and current New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey will begin his ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro today. The Nashville native plans to post occasional updates on a blog for the New York Times. He provided an account of his journey to Tanzania and a preview of his climb in today's post.

    Here is an excerpt from today's post: 

    I felt invigorated knowing that I was near the challenge of the mountain. It was 9:45 p.m. in Kilimanjaro when we landed, so the darkness prevented any potential view of the mountain. But I could feel its presence, like a giant beast lurking in the shadows. Only time will tell if this beast will be friend or foe.

    Dickey is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge, an organization that rescues and cares for women and girls in Mumbai who are at risk of being abused and exploited.

    Sources: McKenzie To Be Named Raiders GM

    Former Tennessee star football player, Knoxville native and longtime NFL executive Reggie McKenzie is set to be named the new general manager of the Oakland Raiders according to various sources.

    - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Report: McKenzie to Oakland
    - Comcast Bay Area: Raiders to hire McKenzie as GM

    Back in September, Reggie and his brother Raleigh were honored as the legends of the game prior to UT's win over Cincinnati. Check out this feature from UTSports.com: Catching Up: Raleigh & Reggie McKenzie as well as this highlight package of the twins:


    Jerod Mayo Featured In Associated Press Story

    Former Vols star Jerod Mayo is featured by the Associated Press in this playoff preview story on the Patriots: Mayo brings leadership to defense that's struggled with injuries, consistency.

    Check out the open of the story:

    The players lining up on defense for New England have changed throughout the season. Injuries and inconsistency forced backups to play key roles, some with little preparation.

    Fortunately for the Patriots, Jerod Mayo is still around.

    The defensive captain directs teammates to the spots where they should line up and is the Patriot most likely to make the tackle. He's had more than 100 of them in each of his four NFL seasons, the first Patriot to do that, and led the team each year.

    "You always want to be consistent," the middle linebacker said. "You always want to be depended on."

    With a bye week before the top-seeded Patriots play their divisional playoff game on Jan. 14, Mayo and his teammates have more time to let their bruises heal and work together in practice.

    Except for two games that he missed with a left knee injury that was expected to keep him out longer, Mayo has been a mainstay in the middle.

    He made 103 tackles on a team that allowed the second most yards in the NFL, an average of 411.1 per game. With three defensive linemen, three linebackers and three defensive backs on injured reserve, he's had to coordinate a shifting cast.

    Friday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/6)

    The Vols are prepping for a showdown against No. 13 Florida on Saturday at Thompson-Boling Arena. Here's the latest news on Cuonzo Martin's team and the Gators.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Jeronne Maymon still optimistic for Vols

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 5: Runners Knotts & Wortham

    On Jan. 5, we wish Happy Birthday to women's track & field performers Chelsea Knotts and Ellen Wortham.

    Chelsea Knotts  Ellen Wortham

    Thursday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/5)

    Trae Golden Scored 22 In A 69-51 Loss At Memphis last night, check out Highlights of the game and the following media stories. There is also news about Jarnell Stokes becoming eligible to start practicing with the Vols. 

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols struggle against Memphis, 69-51
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Jarnell Stokes cleared to practice by NCAA
    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Post mortem on the loss at Memphis
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: Defensive struggles doom Vols against Tigers
    - Memphis Commercial Appeal: Memphis 69, Tennessee 51
    - Inside Tennessee: Memphis mauling
    - Volquest: Vols fail road test

    Happy Birthday - Jan. 4 - C.Brown, Drummer, Kephart

    Happy Birthday on Jan. 4 to soccer players Caroline Brown and Chelsea Kephart along with football player Tyler Drummer.

    Caroline Brown Chelsea Kephart Tyler Drummer

    Wednesday's Tennessee Football Briefing (1/4)

    Shaw Signs Contract With Browns

    Former Tennessee offensive lineman Jarrod Shaw, who spent the 2011 season on the Cleveland Browns practice squad, signed a reserve/futures contract for the 2012 season on Tuesday.

    Here is the story from the Cleveland Browns: Browns sign eight players

    Wednesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/4)

    The Vols are set to rematch with rival Memphis tonight at 8 p.m. (ET). Get all your latest information in GAMEDAY CENTRAL. Check out the following previews and stories from the media.

    - CBS Sports.com: Conference Rese

    Q&A with Former Vol and Mets Prospect Charley Thurber

    Former Vol and current New York Mets minor league prospect Charley Thurber recently sat down with Mets Merized Online for a very interesting and insightful Q&A about his first season in professional baseball. 

    Thurber is currently working out in Knoxville with Tennessee baseball strength and conditioning coach Herman Demmink and a number of other professional baseball players. Here is an excerpt from the Q&A with Thurber.

    This off-season I have been back in Knoxville, TN, at UT, working out with Herman Demmink of 3D Performance. We have been going through intense workouts focused on explosion, power, fast-twitch speed/quickness, and durability. I've had the pleasure to be working alongside a number of my former teammates from UT who are also in the professional ranks, including fellow Met and Volunteer, Blake Forsythe. We are enjoying working with a number of current major leaguers like Joe Nathan, Nate McClouth, and fellow Tennessee Volunteers Chase Headley, Mike Lincoln, and Luke Hochevar. Herman has a thorough, cutting-edge program and I look to come into this season the strongest, fastest, and healthiest that I've ever been.

    COMPLETE Q&A WITH CHARLEY THURBER - Courtesy of Mets Merized Online

    Tuesday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/3)

    Vols In NFL Update (1/2)

    Here's a look at former Vols who were in action on the final day of the NFL regular-season. 

    Miami downed the New York Jets, 19-17 as two former Vols had huge games. Kevin Burnett had a game-best 14 tackles while Marvin Mitchell had the game-clinching interception with a 55-yard return for Miami. Mitchell also made five tackles. Tony McDaniel had two stops for the Dolphins.

    Green Bay won a shootout with Detroit, 45-41 as Chad Clifton (hamstring/back) returned to action as the Packers starting left tackle. Scott Wells also continued to start at center for Green Bay as the Packers piled up 550 yards of offense. 

    New Orleans thumped Carolina, 45-17 as three former Vols played for the Saints. Robert Meachem had two catches for 30 yards. Jabari Greer made three tackles in a start while Aubrayo Franklin started at nose tackle, but had no tackles. With the Panthers, Omar Gaither  was inactive. 

    New England rallied to blow out Buffalo, 49-21 as Jerod Mayo made seven tackles and had a pass defended. Shaun Ellis started on the defensive line at left end, but had no tackles. 

    Philadelphia handled Washington, 34-10 as Donte' Stallworth had a catch for eight yards with the Redskins. 

    Tennessee edged Houston, 23-22 as Arian Foster was inactive for the Texans as he sit to gain rest before the playoffs. Jason Allen had two tackles for Houston. 

    Chicago beat Minnesota, 17-13. Anthony Herrera continued to start for the Vikings at right guard. 

    San Francisco topped St. Louis, 34-27 as Parys Haralson started at outside linebacker and made a tackle along with a quarterback hurry. 

    San Diego got by Oakland, 38-26 despite a 101-yard game from Denarius Moore of the Raiders. It was Moore's third 100-yard game of the season, this time on three catches. John Henderson was inactive with the knee injury. 

    Arizona beat Seattle, 23-20 as Dan Williams was sidelined with an elbow injury for the Cardinals. 

    Atlanta crushed Tampa Bay, 45-24. Albert Haynesworth had three tackles and a pass defended for the Buccaneers. Luke Stocker played as a reserve for the Bucs.

    Pittsburgh edged Cleveland, 13-9 as Ramon Foster started at right guard with the Steelers. With the Browns, Montario Hardesty had two rushes for minus-2 yards. 

    - In punting showcase, Kansas City battled Denver to a 7-3 win. Britton Colquitt of the Chiefs had eight punts for a 47.1 average with four punts inside the 20-yard line. With the Broncos, Dustin Colquitt had nine punts for a 44.7 average with five inside the 20. Robert Ayers had three tackles including a 5-yard sack and a quarterback hurry. 

    Baltimore won at Cincinnati, 24-16 as Morgan Cox snapped 11 times on kicks and punts for the Ravens. Gibril WIlson played on defense with the Bengals, but had no tackles. 

    - In the Sunday night game, the Giants beat the Cowboys, 31-14 to win the NFC East.  Deon Grant made five tackles with the Giants. Jason Witten had seven catches for 69 yards for Dallas in the finale. 

    Monday's Tennessee Basketball Briefing (1/2)

    The men's basketball team continues a stretch of five UT hoop games in five days as the Vols host Chattanooga tonight at Thompson-Boling Arena. Check out these game previews and stories on the team.

    - Knoxville News Sentinel: Vols look to keep streak going
    - Chattanooga Times Free Press: UTC Mocs and UT Vols meet tonight in Knoxville

    Subscribe and Share