Tennessee Basketball: Same song, different verse

Tennessee Volunteers

Vols Senior guard, Jordan McRae (Photo credit: allfortennessee.com)

All is seemingly normal in Knoxville, Tenn.

The cold air has finally settled in for the season. Students are finishing finals and heading home for the holidays. Oh, and the Tennessee basketball team is about to embark on another four-game stretch filled with tournament-caliber teams.

Tis’ the season, indeed.

After a somewhat successful, and very eye opening experience in the Bahamas over Thanksgiving, Tennessee has played one game since returning home and continued to show their relentless dominance on the court. The same dominance they were finally able to muster up in the latter part of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament that many expected them to open the season with.

As has been the norm over the past few years, though, the Vols won’t let an early season tournament be the most difficult part of their regular season. Although a tough schedule has sealed their post-season fate the past two years, they will still take on a difficult non-conference schedule before beginning SEC play yet again.

To start the second leg of difficult non-conference matchups will be an undefeated Wichita State team, which the Vols will travel to face on the road this Saturday, Dec. 14 at 2 p.m.

The No. 12 Shockers are coming off their best season yet after advancing all the way to the Final Four a year ago. They’ll not only be looking to build upon a 9-0 start this year, but to avenge a 69-60 loss to the Vols in Knoxville, Tenn. one year ago.

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After Wichita State, Tennessee will face two ACC teams, North Carolina State and Virginia, in their next three games, with a game set against Morehead State in between the two.

The good news for the Vols is after traveling to face Wichita State their next four games will be at home, where they haven’t lost in nine straight regular season games, their last loss coming against Georgia on Feb. 6 in 2013.

After their next five games, which ends with a home game against in-state school Tusculum, Tennessee will begin their SEC schedule, which features eight games against six different opponents that could be possible NCAA tournament contenders, when they travel to LSU on Jan. 7.

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