Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Sports Columns

January 26, 2012

Jarnell Stokes wins SEC Freshman of the Week

CROSSVILLE — SEC award for Jarnell Stokes

The Vols started last weekend off on the right foot by upsetting then #13 UConn at home before a loud contingent of the Big Orange Nation. Jarnell Stokes joined the starting lineup last Saturday and did not disappoint, posting a team high 16 points and 12 rebounds in his starting debut. Stokes was rewarded for his performances against Georgia and UConn last week when he was named the SEC Freshman of the Week on Monday. 

Lady Vols' struggles continue against Top 10 teams

 The Lady Vols played one of their worst games in decades when they were crushed at #2 Notre Dame 72-44. The Lady Vols are a team that is loaded with talent but has yet to play up to their billing this season.   

Although not as road challenged as the men, they have struggled against the better teams away from the friendly confines of Thompson-Boling Arena. Besides the most recent loss to Notre Dame, the Lady Vols have now lost on the road to #4 Stanford, #6 Kentucky and unranked Virginia. The road adventures continued last night at Alabama before heading to Georgia Sunday for a 4 p.m. CST game that can be seen on ESPN2. 

The Lady Vols, with nine games remaining in the regular season, are getting all their key players healthy. I still feel that Lady Vol fans have yet to see the best this team has to offer; look for them to peak going into March. 

The Vols' road woes

The Vols continued their ineptness on the road with a poor effort against a highly motivated Vanderbilt team Tuesday night. Not exactly how Coach Cuonzo Martin wanted to debut his new orange blazer. The last time the Vols won on the road was last November in Maui. 

Lately the Vols have suffered from turnovers in hostile environments. Twenty and twenty-two turnovers in their last two road trips have been one reason they are still searching for that first SEC road win of the season.

 It doesn’t get any easier for the Vols on the road later this week with a trip to Lexington to play #1 Kentucky Tuesday night. Before trying to tame the Wildcats, they have a chance to get back in the win column tomorrow at home against an Auburn team that is winless on the road in SEC games this season. The game will be carried on ESPN2 at 5 p.m. CST for those not making the trek to Knoxville. 

A chance for redemption

 Jim Butler and the rest of the Vandy faithful finally had a chance to celebrate a victory over the Vols after the ‘Dores dropped both games to the Big Orange last season. Circle March 3 Vol fans. That is when Vandy travels to Knoxville on the last day of the regular season. Could make for a very interesting Senior Day?  

National Signing Day this Wednesday

This week Vol fans will keep their collective fingers crossed that this recruiting class stays intact. Historically, there has been some movement among high school players during this week and the Vols have a few potential signees that are still looking at their options elsewhere. I would expect that even if the Vols have a few defections they also could be the beneficiary of a few defectors from other schools. It promises to be another strong class coming to Rocky Top in the fall. 

Smokey on the mend

Last September, UT’s mascot Smokey suffered a partial tear to his right rear anterior cruciate ligament. This week he underwent successful surgery to repair that damage at the UT’s College of Veterinary Medicine. In about six weeks, he will have his other leg repaired. If all goes as expected, he will be back prowling the sidelines and leading the Vols through the ‘T’ again this September.

Gateway to March Madness

 January has flown by and certainly has been full of surprises. What February has in store for the Big Orange Nation is anyone’s guess, but it can certainly pave the way to the post season. Just how excited Tennessee fans will be entering March depends on how the Vols and Lady Vols traverse through a month full of opportunities while avoiding potential pit falls. Go Vols and Lady Vols!!!

(Frank Gale is a Chronicle correspondent and his column appears regularly.)

Text Only
Sports Columns
  • Better police needed for college teams enticed to cheat

    Cheating has been part of college athletics probably for as long as people have bothered to keep score.

    July 24, 2014

  • Rocky Top Beat: Vols begin preparations for season opener in eight days

    The start of fall practice is only a mere eight days away. Coach Butch Jones has to be ready to get Team #118 on the field and to start preparations for Utah State.

    July 24, 2014

  • Expectations too high for a rehabbing Woods

    Even when Tiger Woods finished just a few strokes from last place at the British Open, he was one of the  featured topics in stories coming out of Royal Liverpool Golf Club.

    July 23, 2014

  • Rocky Top Beat: Vols focused on Utah

    The SEC media days have come and gone with no real news being generated. A successful media days appearance is usually defined as leaving Hoover, AL without giving a future opponent bulletin board material. Using that criteria, Tennessee left without any major gaffs.

    July 17, 2014

  • Oh Good Greif: Good things must come to an end

    The Dr. Pepper Classic, a long-time tradition at McKenzie Arena, affectively-known as the Round House, will seize, as a couple of teams dropped out, leaving the university in a "lurch," according to the Chattanooga Times Free Press Tuesday morning. Teams wanted a cash guarantee to play, which couldn't be provided (at this time).

    July 10, 2014

  • Rocky Top Beat: Majors Invitational tees off Sunday at Lake Tansi

    It is the second weekend in July and that means Johnny Majors is at Lake Tansi this weekend to host his annual golf tournament. It is always a treat for the local UT fans to interact with those that have been a part of the Vol football program. They come to the plateau each year to renew old acquaintances and share the stories of gridiron prowess from past years. By the way, the stories sure seem to get better with time.

    July 10, 2014

  • Oh Good Greif: 'Dores make history with CWS win

    History was made at the College World Series in Omaha, NE, this week, as the Vanderbilt Commodores baseball team won the school's  first national championship in any sport since the Vandy women's bowling team won the 2007 national crown.

    June 26, 2014

  • Rocky Top Beat: Tyndall hire closes the book on Martin era

    The University of Tennessee was able to close the books on the Cuonzo Martin era of Vol basketball earlier this week when they hired Donnie Tyndall to lead their program. Athletic Director Dave Hart, who conducted the search and the hiring on his own, appears to have found the right coach for this team at the right time.

    April 24, 2014

  • ROCKY TOP BEAT: You never know what will happen next with TN sports

    When you cover UT sports, you never know what is going to happen next. The past two weeks were no exception as they were filled with "the good, the bad and the ugly."

    April 17, 2014

  • Oh Good Greif: Spring in full swing with Masters under way

    With "March Madness" over and the Masters golf tournament under way in Augusta, GA, you know spring has sprung.

    April 10, 2014

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice
Graduation 2014