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Where Tennessee Basketball Lands In Post NBA Draft Deadline Way-Too-Early Rankings

Photo By Andrew Ferguson/Tennessee Athletics

With the NBA Draft withdrawal deadline coming and going on Wednesday, college basketball rosters across the country are mostly set.

The same goes for Tennessee. The Vols still have two scholarships left to work with but after adding four transfers at numerous positions this offseason, Tennessee’s key rotation players are all already on the roster as they look to add a depth or developmental piece or two this summer.

Tennessee returns First Team All-SEC point guard Zakai Zeigler as well as veteran shooting guards Jahmai Mashack and Jordan Gainey as well as talented rising sophomores Cam Carr and JP Estrella. The Vols supplemented that returning core with four incoming transfers: North Florida shooting guard Chaz Lanier, Hofstra wing Darlinstone Dubar, Charlotte forward Igor Milicic and Ohio State center Felix Okpara.

That core has Tennessee back as at least a top 25 team again next season with a strong chance to be a top 10 team. Most publications have updated their way-too-early top 25 rankings since the draft deadline past, here’s where Tennessee lands in them.

More From RTI: Tennessee Basketball Landed Its Guys In The Transfer Portal


National rank: No. 13

SEC rank: No. 4

What they said about the Vols: “Dalton Knecht is gone, and with him goes Rick Barnes’ best offense in several years. But if the more up-tempo, 3-point-heavy offensive system remains in Knoxville, there should be plenty of optimism. The Volunteers also landed another potential stud mid-major transfer in North Florida’s Chaz Lanier, who averaged 19.7 points and shot 44% from 3. Barnes will surround high-level point guard Zakai Zeigler with a slew of shooters and Ohio State transfer Felix Okpara will anchor the interior defensively.”


National rank: No. 13

SEC rank: No. 4

What they said about the Vols: “This ranking is based on Rick Barnes’ Volunteers returning two of the top five scorers — specifically Zakai Zeigler and Jordan Gainey — from a team that won the SEC regular-season title and secured a No. 2 seed in the 2024 NCAA Tournament. The departures of Dalton Knecht, Jonas Aidoo and Josiah-Jordan James are huge, but Tennessee should still make the NCAA Tournament for the fifth straight year thanks in part to the additions of North Florida transfer Chaz Lanier, Hofstra transfer Darlinstone Dubar, Ohio State transfer Felix Okpara and Charlotte transfer Igor Milicic Jr.”


National rank: No. 16

SEC rank: No. 3

What they said about the Vols: N/A

Jon Rothstein

National rank: No. 22

SEC rank: No. 6

What they said about the Vols: N/A

Field of 68

National rank: No. 19

SEC rank: No. 5

What they said about the Vols: N/A

Bart Torvik (analytics based ranking)

National rank: No. 7

SEC rank: No. 1

What they said about the Vols: N/A

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