According to a report from 247Sports, French forward Yves Pons won’t be joining the Vols’ basketball team along with the rest of the 2017 recruiting class. He is expected to join later this summer, however.
Tennessee and Rick Barnes have four of the five players from the 2017 class already on UT’s campus, but Pons has yet to join his teammates.
“Yves we didn’t expect to be here right now,” Rick Barnes said during Saturday’s Big Orange Caravan stop in Chattanooga. “But we expected everyone else to be here.”
The reason for Pons’ absence? He is currently playing for France’s national team while they compete in a FIBA tournament this summer. Pons’ availability will be determined by France’s results in the tournament.
When asked about the possibility of Pons joining the team in July, Barnes was cautiously optimistic.
“I think he still has a chance, but we don’t know,” Barnes stated. “He’s going to take care of what he has to do with his international play. Right now that’s the first thing he has to take care of, then he’ll decide from there. Even if he’s not in school, the new rule allows him to join us without him being in class.”
Pons is the highest rated player Barnes has recruited to Tennessee thus far. Pons is rated as a four-star small forward according to 247Sports and is rated as high as the 59th overall player in the country. The 247Sports Composite rankings have Pons listed as the 128th overall player in the nation.
When Pons joins, he’ll be joining incoming freshmen Derrick Walker and Zach Kent along with transfers Chris Darrington and James Daniel in the 2017 class for Tennessee.