M Robinson wondered in his summary of yesterday's SEC tournament games how much Kelsey Bone's injury during the Texas A&M Aggies' win over the South Carolina Gamecocks yesterday might affect today's semifinal meeting with the Tennessee Lady Vols.
And that added to all of the Lady Vols' injuries makes the health of each roster obvious theme of this game.
The Lady Vols will be playing seven deep with Isabelle Harrison still out, Texas A&M freshman Courtney Walker will be asked to expend more energy defensively with Meighan Simmons on the floor, and then there's Bone.
So this one is almost impossible to predict, but one key statistic to watch for might be rebounding, as highlighted by Jim Hu at Good Bull Hunting when looking back to the Aggies' 82-72 loss in Knoxville back on February 28.
Despite our height advantage, USCe outrebounded the Ags. Tenn killed us on the boards in Knoxville, and losing the battle of the boards could be fatal vs the Vols. 47.8% overall and 45.5% from behind the arc may be too much to repeat.
Chris Pendley of Rocky Top Talk also looked to the interior, focusing on the play of Lady Vols freshman post Bashaara Graves.
Look for Spani to spend more time inside and Jasmine Jones to get more than a token runout; she needs minutes today. Graves needs to be more involved today than she was yesterday; she did a solid defensive job on Jennifer George but was kept quiet offensively. Last time against TAMU, she went for 14/7 on 6-11 shooting; that's much closer to the line we need from her.
And all of that brings us back to the original point: how ready is Bone to impose her will on this game if she's hobbled, particularly when she only had five boards in the previous meeting?
For more on this game as well as perspectives on yesterday's results, check out Good Bull Hunting and Rocky Top Talk. For more on the SEC tournament as a whole, check out our SEC tournament storystream.