Tennessee has been picked to win the Southeastern Conference in the preseason media poll.
The Vols are ahead of No. 2 Kentucky and No. 3 LSU in the voting, which was comprised of SEC and national media members. Seniors John Fulkerson and Yves Pons were both named to preseason All-SEC teams.
Fulkerson was named to the All-SEC first team and was one of seven players who received a vote for SEC Player of the Year. Pons, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year in the SEC, was picked to the second team.
Tennessee begins the season at No. 12 in the Associated Press preseason poll and will face Charlotte in its season-opener on Nov. 25 as part of the Volunteer Classic. The three-team event also includes Charlotte and VCU. Tennessee will face VCU on Nov. 27.
Fulkerson joined LSU’s Trendon Watford, Kentucky’s Brandon Boston Jr., Florida’s Keyontae Johnson and Alabama’s John Petty Jr. on the first team. Johnson was named the preseason SEC Player of the Year.
This is the first time Tennessee has been picked to win the SEC by the media since the 2008-09 season. The Vols’ last SEC title came in 2018-19, when they were picked to finish second-to-last in the preseason poll.
SEC play begins on Dec. 30 and ends on March 3. The SEC Tournament is set for March 10-14 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. The league has left time open in between for possible rescheduled games.
Tennessee will play in front of a maximum capacity of 4,000 fans at Thompson-Boling Arena this season.