The SEC announced Tennessee basketball — and the rest of the league’s — conference opponents Monday morning.
As usual, Tennessee will play nine home games and nine away games in the conference slate.
Tennessee will face Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Kentucky, LSU, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt at the friendly confines of Thompson-Boling Arena.
The Vols will face Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Missouri, South Carolina, Texas A&M and Vanderbilt on the road.
While the complete schedule has not been released, SEC play begins on Jan. 6 and runs through Mar. 9.
The SEC scheduling format allows all 14 teams to play each other every season with each team playing five opponents twice. Each program has three permanent opponents that they play twice every season.Tennessee’s three opponents are Kentucky, South Carolina and Vanderbilt.
In addition to its three permanent opponents, the Vols face Alabama and Texas A&M twice during the 2022-23 schedule.
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While Tennessee’s three permanent opponents present plenty of manageable matchups — the Vols have lost just two combined games to South Carolina and Vanderbilt since the 2017-18 season — the two other opponents it faces twice will be quite challenging.
Alabama is the reigning SEC Champion and while they lost star Brandon Miller to the NBA the Crimson Tide are poised to compete for the conference crown again next season. Buzz Williams finally got Texas A&M into the NCAA Tournament last season and pundits rank the Aggies as a top 25 team entering next season.
Facing Auburn at home is a win for the Vols but there’s still plenty of challenging road matchups including Arkansas, Mississippi State and Missouri.
Tennessee enters Rick Barnes’ ninth season in a strong spot. The Vols are riding five straight NCAA Tournament appearances and last season’s Sweet 16 berth into the 2023-24 season.
Barnes and his staff had a strong offseason, adding transfers Jordan Gainey, Dalton Knecht and Chris Ledlum while returning super seniors Santiago Vescovi and Josiah-Jordan James.
Tennessee’s complete non conference schedule isn’t official but the Vols boast matchups against Wisconsin, Illinois, North Carolina State, an ACC/SEC Challenge matchup and three games at the Maui Invitational.