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Dance Card: Tennessee, SEC at-large

Good old Rocky Top.

USA TODAY Sports

Who? The Lady Vols of Tennessee.

What? Tennessee has a history of answering the call. Smokey is a blue tick coon hound who knows how to work a room. And now "Rocky Top" is stuck in my head. (And now it's stuck in yours, isn't it?)

Where? Knoxville, Tennessee, headquarters of the Tennessee Valley Authority.

When? March 23rd, in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Why? Single-digit RPI, single-digit SOS, regular-season SEC title.

How? They were an at-large selection.

Surprise? Predicted to finish fourth in the conference, which in and of itself is a bit of a surprise. Being Tennessee, they won the regular season title by one game over Kentucky.

RPI: 6

SOS: 3

Record: 24-7 (14-2 Southeastern)

Good wins: North Carolina.

Bad losses: At Missouri, or maybe at Chattanooga.

Who's running this show? Holly Warlick, since 2012, who's got the hardest act to follow in women's basketball history. Go back Pat, then come back to this preview.

Extra, Extra! Not that UT is serious business in Knoxville, but the News Sentinel has a devoted sub-site for Tennessee sports.


It's been an interesting year for the Lady Vols as they adjust to life after Pat, and inconsistency has been the watchword for their backcourt, especially junior Meighan Simmons (team-high 17.5 points) and senior Taber Spani; either of them can shoot Tennessee back into a game or out of it. Freshman post Bashaara Graves has been a revelation down low, averaging 13.8 points and 8.3 rebounds. There's something I like about sophomore forward Cierra Burdick- she seems to have her head screwed on straighter than your average sophomore.

Our cohorts over at Rocky Top Talk can probably go into a bit more detail about this Tennessee squad.