Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Sports Columns

March 10, 2014

ROCKY TOP BEAT: It was a great weekend for the Vols, Lady Vols

CROSSVILLE — What a great weekend for the Vols and Lady Vols. First, I want to apologize to the readers for the inadvertent reference in Friday's column where the Lady Vols instead of the  Vols were identified with two close losses this season against Texas A&M. The good news is the Lady Vols were able to take care of business against the Aggies and get a bit of redemption for UT.

The Lady Vols had to overcome double digit deficits in all three of their games before finally securing their 17th SEC Tournament Championship. Congrats to Isabelle Harrison for being  named SEC Tournament MVP and to senior Meighan Simmons who has scored over 2,000 points during her career at Tennessee. This team has come together under Coach Holly Warlick and could enter the NCAA Tournament with a number one seed when the brackets are announced next Monday.

The Vols continued their year end turnaround by dismantling Missouri on Saturday and in the process possibly ending the Tigers NCAA Tournament hopes. The streaking Vols head to the SEC Tournament in Atlanta where they will try to make the most out of their number four seeding.

Tennessee seeded on the same side of the bracket with regular season champ Florida certainly presents a difficult pathway to the finals. Before the Vols can even think about upsetting the Gators, they will have to avoid another early exit.

Some of the recent success for the Vols is directly related to the coaching staff working with  point guard Antonio Barton before he was inserted into the starting line up. Since that move, Barton's confidence has soared and so has the Vols' offense. Along with an improved offense, the Vols have committed to playing a stifling defense that should serve Tennessee well in the post season.

Keeping that momentum going now is critical for the Vols. They hold their post season fate in their own hands now. Win at least one game in Atlanta and it should be on to the NCAA Tournament for the the first time under Cuonzo Martin. Stumble in the quarter finals and they could be putting  their fate in the hands of the selection committee.

Vols fans will have to wait until Friday when the Vols play a late afternoon contest against either Arkansas or the survivor of Wednesday's game between Auburn and South Carolina. It would take some major upsets for the Vols to win it all; however, they do call it March Madness for a reason - right?  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
Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways
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