WATCH: Kellie Harper Talks At Lady Vols’ Media Day

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    Photo by Ric Butler/RTI

    Tennessee women’s basketball coach Kellie Harper began the Lady Vols’ media day Thursday by meeting with the local media.

    The third-year coach was positive about her team and said they were farther along defensively than they were last year at this time.

    “Honestly, I think we’re a little bit ahead defensively because our personalities really mesh,” Harper said. “We’re very aggressive right now. We’re a little bit more risk taking, little bit more ball pressure, our personalities are more in line with what I want to be defensively. Because of that we’ve been able to assess where they’re at and give them a little more and really push them on that defensive end.

    Tennessee is 13 days away from its season opener against Southern Illinois. The easy matchup to open the season sets up the Lady Vols challenging schedule. Harper’s team plays a plethora of strong out of conference opponents including Stanford and UConn— two schools in the preseason top three.

    Harper also discussed life without Rennia Davis, that challenging non-conference schedule and an injury that will sideline Marta Suarez for the season.

    Ryan Schumpert is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. He just completed a three-year stint with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent last three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Did we leave out the part about Ryan interning for the Smokies? Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three of the reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.