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Where Tennessee Basketball Ranks In Inaugural KenPom Rankings

Photo via Tennessee Athletics

The inaugural KenPom rankings for the 2023-24 college basketball season came out Sunday with Tennessee landing at No. 8 nationally. The saber-metrics based ranking system predicts Tennessee to have the nation’s second most efficient defense and 33rd most efficient offense this season.

Ken Pomery runs the KenPom website and is widely respected across the college basketball world for his in depth statistical analysis of the sport. Tennessee finished the 2022-23 season as the nation’s No. 6 team on KenPom after falling to FAU in the Sweet 16.

KenPom projects Tennessee to go 21-8 (12-6 SEC) in the regular season.

The Vols are the No. 8 team nationally and the top SEC team in the preseason rankings. KenPom ranks all 362 division one teams. Other SEC teams in the top 50 include: Alabama (10), Arkansas (14), Auburn (15), Kentucky (18), Texas A&M (24), Mississippi State (27), Florida (39) and LSU (47).

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Tennessee also plays Purdue (1)/Gonzaga (5), North Carolina (17), Illinois (19) and Wisconsin (20) in its non conference slate.

The Vols are a near consensus preseason top 10 team after returning super seniors Josiah-Jordan James and Santiago Vescovi from last season’s Sweet 16 team while adding talented redshirt freshman Freddie Dilione (who early enrolled and redshirted last season) and transfers Jordan Gainey and Dalton Knecht to the roster.

Tennessee also returners a number of players looking to take a step forward in its second or third-year in the program: Tobe Awaka, Jonas Aidoo and Jahmai Mashack.

Rick Barnes’ ninth season in Knoxville begins on Nov. 6 when they host Tennessee Tech at Thompson-Boling Arena.

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