Ole Miss Down Key Players Before Showdown with Tennessee

    by -

    NCAAM Recap: LSU Comes Out On Top Vs. Kentucky

    The Ole Miss Rebels will very likely be down a couple of key players during Wednesday night’s SEC matchup with Tennessee. The Vols will be looking to bounce back from their initial SEC loss to Alabama last Wednesday night. Meanwhile, Ole Miss will be attempting to kick off the conference schedule with a win in Knoxville after their original opener hosting Florida was postponed.

    However, heading into Wednesday’s matchup, the Rebels do have some roster concerns.

    According to CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein on Wednesday, Ole Miss will be without star guard Jarkel Joiner due to a back injury. The senior guard is currently leading Ole Miss in points per game at 14.8 and is also adding in three assists and 3.5 rebounds per game on average.

    Joiner’s non-playing status will be huge for Ole Miss against a Tennessee team that is looking for another strong win at home. In the Rebels’ 12 games this year, Joiner has double digits in all of the games but one in which he scored nine points. Additionally, Joiner is an extremely reliable player for Kermit Davis and the Rebels. Joiner has seen a considerable amount of time on the court this season, landing above 35 minutes in seven of the last eight games.

    See Also from RTI: Paul Finebaum Claims Tennessee the Music City Bowl Winner

    In addition, according to Rothstein’s report, the Rebels are expected to have “several” players out against Tennessee due to COVID-19 protocols.

    Tennessee has been battling some COVID issues as well in the last week. During the Vols’ conference opener in Tuscaloosa last week, Tennessee was without guard Kennedy Chandler and forward John Fulkerson due to COVID testing following the Christmas break.

    On Tuesday, though, Tennessee was able to relay some good news ahead of the Ole Miss game. According to the Tennessee athletics department on Tuesday, all of the Vols who missed the Alabama game are back with the team and are going through all team activities. In addition, Tennessee had a full practice in terms of players on the same Tuesday afternoon.

    While things could have changed between Tuesday and Thursday, as things stand now, the Vols look to be in a good shape against an Ole Miss team that will be looking to replace points and leadership on the court.

    Currently, at the time of this publication, Tennessee is a 17.5-point favorite over Ole Miss according to Fanduel Sportsbook.

    Ric Butler is a Knoxville based sports media personality who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since 2017. Most recently, he served as the lead writer for the website of a local radio station. Ric also helped create and host a daily radio show called “The Blitz." Ric’s passion for sports, smooth vocal, and infectious personality have made him popular with both his peers and Vol Nation. Originally from Dallas, Ric didn’t grow up riding horses to school. But he did dream of the big city lights. When not chasing down the latest Tennessee story, Ric can be found watching the WWE, often attempting their moves in an embarrassing fashion.