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#6 Tennessee Vols Basketball hosts Eastern Kentucky, Wednesday

 

#6 Tennessee Vols (4-1 | 0-0 SEC) vs. Eastern Kentucky (3-3 | 0-0 OVC)

Wednesday, November 28th, 2018 | 5:30pm CT
Knoxville, TN | Thompson-Boling Arena | TV: SEC Network

Tennessee Volunteers - UT VolsKnoxville, TN – The Tennessee Volunteers will play their 500th game in Thompson-Boling Arena on Wednesday night, as they host Eastern Kentucky for a 5:30pm CT tip.

SEC Network will carry the broadcast, which can also be streamed online through WatchESPN. Fans can also listen live on their local Vol Network affiliate to hear Bob Kesling and Bert Bertelkamp describing the action. Tickets are still available online at AllVols.com.

Tennessee (4-1) is coming off a trip to New York after playing in the NIT Season Tip-Off. UT split its two games in the Barclays Center, defeating Louisville in the semifinals, 92-81, and dropping a hardfought matchup against No. 2 Kansas, 87-81, in overtime.

Tennessee Men's Basketball plays Eastern Kentucky at Thompson-Boling Arena, Wednesday. (UT Athletics)

Grant Williams was named the SEC co-Player of the Week after the tournament, averaging 21.0 points, 8.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 2.0 blocks per game.

He was also named to the NIT Season Tip-Off All-Tournament Team along with Jordan Bone.

Bone posted 13.5 points, 5.5 assists and 4.0 rebounds per game during the tournament. Against Kansas, he finished with 16 points on 6-of-10 shooting to go along with six rebounds and five assists.

The Series

Tennessee leads the all-time series with Eastern Kentucky, 4-0.

Two meetings have taken place in Knoxville (1984 and 2005). The Vols also defeated EKU in Richmond (1912) and Murfreesboro (1979).

The Vols own a 56-2 all-time record against current members of the Ohio Valley Conference. 

A Win Would

Extend Tennessee’s home win streak to 12 games, dating to last season.

Improve UT’s record vs. current members of the OVC to 57-2. 

Storylines

This is Tennessee’s 500th men’s basketball game at Thompson-Boling Arena. The riverfront venue that seats 21,678 opened for the 1987-88 season.

The Volunteers are 370-129 at Thompson-Boling Arena.

Tennessee has committed fewer turnovers than its opponent in all five games this season.

Grant Williams leads the SEC in scoring (21.6 ppg) and ranks second in field-goal percentage (.597).

Grant Williams and Jordan Bone both were named to last week’s NIT Season Tip-Off All-Tournament Team.

Williams also was named the SEC Co-Player of the Week.

As a team, Tennessee leads the SEC in 3-point field-goal defense (.274), assists per game (20.6 apg) and assist/turnover ratio (1.7).

Four Vols rank among the top 10 in the SEC in assist/turnover ratio. Jordan Bowden ranks third (3.8), Jordan Bone is sixth (2.6), Admiral Schofield ranks eighth (1.9) and Grant Williams is 10th (1.4).

According to KenPom, Tennessee ranks in the top 15 in both offensive efficiency (13th) and defensive efficiency (11th).

VFL Scotty Hopson (2008-11) of the NBA G League’s Oklahoma City Blue was recently named to USA Basketball’s November USA World Cup Qualifying Team.

About Eastern Kentucky

The Vols and the Colonels are set to meet for the first time in more than a decade, with UT looking to preserve its perfect record in a series that dates to 1912.

A.W. Hamilton is in his first year at the helm of a collegiate program after spending just one season as an assistant coach at NC State, but the two-time National Prep Coach of the Year excelled as head coach during his six seasons at Hargrave Military Academy, where he boasted a record of 237-22 and led his team to the 2016 National Prep Championship.

Eastern Kentucky (3-3) lost some key players from last year’s squad, but three-time All-OVC first-team selection Nick Mayo is back for his senior season. Mayo is on pace to become the program’s all-time leading scorer and is one of only six Colonels ever to record 1,500 points and 500 rebounds in a career. He also holds EKU’s career blocks record (132).

This season, Mayo is averaging 25.0 points and 9.2 rebounds per game. In a game at Chattanooga earlier this month, Mayo dropped 40 points on 12-of-23 shooting in a win over the Mocs.

Lachlan Anderson is another player to keep an eye on for the Colonels. The junior forward is second on the team in scoring (9.8 ppg) and rebounding (5.8 rpg). 

Tennessee Vols Last Meeting With Eastern Kentucky

Junior center Major Wingate scored a career-high 18 points and grabbed five rebounds to lead Tennessee to a 92-58 victory over Eastern Kentucky at Thompson-Boling Arena on November 25th, 2005.

Tennessee took advantage of 25 turnovers by Eastern Kentucky. The Big Orange improved to 3-0.

The Vols had 21 assists and 13 turnovers. Chris Lofton added 17 points, C.J. Watson 12 scored and Andre Patterson had 10.

Wingate, whose previous career high was 14 points against Kentucky last season, was 6-of-8 from the floor and made all six of his foul shots. Lofton, who hit 4 of 8 shots from 3-point range, had two points at halftime and was 0-of-4 from the floor.

Eastern Kentucky was led by Mike Rose with 13 points, and Jason McLeish and Alonzo Hird with 12 each.

Tennessee led 44-29 at halftime. 

Hoops Ranked High On Rocky Top

Tennessee joins Iowa as the only schools in the nation whose men’s and women’s basketball teams both are ranked in the AP top 15.

The Vols are ranked sixth in the country, while the Lady Vols are the AP’s 11th-ranked team. 

Tennessee Vols At Home During The Barnes Era

The Volunteers own a 39-11 record at Thompson-Boling Arena under the direction of head coach Rick Barnes.

With Barnes on the bench, Tennessee is 18-9 at home against SEC opposition.

The Vols’ current 11-game home win streak is longest of the Barnes era.

Barnes has led the Vols to a 3-3 home record against AP top-25 opponents.


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