Tennessee Moving Up In ESPN’s Preseason Bracketology

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    Tennessee’s men’s basketball team has followed up its strong 2021-22 season with a strong offseason. The Vols lost star point guard Kennedy Chandler but return upperclassmen Santiago Vescovi and Josiah-Jordan James after breakout junior seasons.

    Pair that with a four-player prep signing class including five-star Julian Phillips and Indiana State transfer Tyreke Key and you have a team poised to compete for a conference title.

    ESPN updated its offseason bracketology, showing its belief in Tennessee entering the 2022-23 season.

    The updated bracketology tabs Tennessee as the No. 2 in the East Region, playing its first weekend matchups in Greensboro, North Carolina.

    Tennessee was previously a three-seed in ESPN’s preseason bracketology.

    More From RTI: Tennessee Announces Out Of Conference Schedule

    In this preseason prediction, Tennessee plays 15-seed Vermont in the first game of the tournament and would face either No. 7 seed UConn or No. 10 seed Iowa in the Round of 32. Other top seeds in the East Region include No. 1 North Carolina, No. 3 Texas, No. 4 Villanova and No. 5 Dayton.

    Tennessee is one of seven SEC teams in the projected NCAA Tournament including No. 1 seed Kentucky, No. 3 Arkansas, No. 4 Auburn, No. 6 Alabama, No. 8 Texas A&M and No. 10 Florida.

    The Vols play both No. 3 seed Texas and No. 5 Arizona in out of conference play and could face No. 2 Kansas, No. 5 Dayton and No. 9 Southern Cal in the Bad Boys Mowers Battle4Atlantis.

    Tennessee opens Rick Barnes’ eighth season as head coach against Tennessee Tech on Nov. 7 at Thompson-Boling Arena.

    Ryan Schumpert is a recent graduate of the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. Ryan spent three years with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program before joining RTI. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.