#7 Tennessee Women's Basketball 2018-2019 Preview

Tennessee Volunteers
Overall Rank: #7
Conference Rank: #1 SEC
Tennessee Logo
Tennessee had an interesting 2017-18 season to say the least as they had several big wins over the likes Texas, Stanford, and South Carolina. However, the Lady Vols saw their season come to an earlier than expected end as they lost to Oregon State in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Head Coach Holly Warlick continues to face some significant pressure to get Tennessee back to the Final Four and will need some immediate help from a strong incoming freshmen class to compliment a group of three returning starters.
2017-18 Record: 25-8, 11-5
2017-18 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Holly Warlick
Coach Record: 153-54 at Tennessee, 153-54 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Mercedes Russell, Center, 15.3 ppg
Jamie Nared, Guard/Forward, 16.7 ppg
Anastasia Hayes, Guard, 9.3 ppg
Kortney Dunbar, Forward, 2.9 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Rennia Davis, Sophomore, Guard/Forward, 12.0 ppg
Evina Westbrook, Sophomore, Point Guard, 8.4 ppg
Meme Jackson, Senior, Guard/Forward, 8.2 ppg
Cheridene Green, Redshirt Senior, Forward, 4.1 ppg
Kasiyahna Kushkituah, Sophomore, Center, 1.8 ppg
Kamera Harris, Junior, Center, 0.6 ppg
Key New Players
Lou Brown, Redshirt Senior, Forward
Zaay Green, Freshman, Guard
Jazmine Massengill, Freshman, Point Guard
Mimi Collins, Freshman, Forward
Rae Burrell, Freshman, Guard/Forward
There is some work to be done offensively for Tennessee as they need to replace over 40 points per game from the loss of Mercedes Russell, Jamie Nared, and Anastasia Hayes. Rennia Davis is the leading returning scorer for the Lady Vols after averaging 12 points per fame last season. Davis did a very nice job with shot selection as she made 48.3 percent of her shots from the floor. Evina Westbrook will be looking to take a step forward in her sophomore season at point guard. Westbrook did a solid job scoring wise as she averaged 8.4 points per game. The assist to turnover ratio will need to improve for Westbrook and it needs to get closer to a 1.75-2:1 level for Tennessee to get to the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament. Meme Jackson will be another key player for the Lady Vols. Her experience and ability to knock down open outside shots, as Jackson made 35.7 percent of her three-point shots last season, will be very important for Tennessee. The schedule should buy Tennessee some time to get rolling as their first big test will be on December 2nd at Oklahoma State, and then a week later a trip to Texas to play the Longhorns will be difficult as well. Stanford and Notre Dame are the two signature non-conference home games. Three SEC games starting on February 17th at Missouri will decided the SEC race as the Lady Vols will play the Tigers, at Texas A&M and home against South Carolina. Look for Tennessee to contend for the SEC title and be a threat to get to the Sweet 16 or Elite Eight.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 77.6 (26th in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.3 (156, 8)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.0 (31, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 38.0 (63, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 4.8 (264, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 30.7 (207, 9)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.1 (184, 8)
Rebound Margin: 8.6 (14, 2)
Assists Per Game: 15.9 (38, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 16.4 (225, 12)
Madness 2018 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#13 Zarielle Green
#15 Jazmine Massengill
#28 Amira Collins
#80 Rae Burrell