Tobias Harris wore a puzzled expression after being asked why he gets up each day for a 6:15 a.m. private shoot-around in Pratt Pavilion.
"Why not? I'd be getting up at 7 anyway, so why not get up one hour earlier?'' Harris said. "I go to bed early, like 10, so as long as I get that 7 1/2 to 8 hours of sleep, I'm good.
"I want to be the best.''
Various national recruiting services selected Harris as the top power forward recruit in the nation coming out of Dix Hills, N.Y., last spring.
But Harris knows a successful transition from high school into the college game isn't a given, and he views himself as far from a finished product.
To this point, he's shooting less than 30 percent from beyond the 3-point arc in live scrimmage action this fall.
"They've been good shots, but I've rushed a few and they've been in-and-out,'' Harris said. "I just need to keep getting up extra shots on my own. They'll fall.''
UT men's basketball coach Bruce Pearl doesn't seem overly concerned with Harris' outside shooting percentage at this point.
"Tobias is doing a lot of the little things you need to do,'' Pearl said. "He's understanding where to go, how to get open and he's asking good questions.
"Today he was 2-for-2 shooting from the floor, 1-for-1 from three(-point range), and he led us in defensive rebounds and fouls drawn.''
Tuesday marked the first day Pearl used the scout team against the Vols, and his first day inserting the vaunted Controlled Chaos press.
"We didn't create turnovers, but we did create tempo, and I'm going to keep pressing this week,'' Pearl said. "Today was also our first day with our scout team going. The scout team did win one of our 2-minute scrimmages.''
Senior walk-on Michael Hubert, seeing his first live scrimmage action since undergoing reconstructive surgery on his right knee in January and arthroscopic surgery on the same knee on Oct. 5, drained the game-winning 3-pointer.
It wasn't against one of the teams Harris played on.
"Yes, I was only 2-for-2 shooting today, but I was splitting time with Steven Pearl and our teams kept winning and that's important,'' Harris said. "I go into practice trying to find more spots and more ways to score.''
Harris said Pearl's trademark "Cutters" system is new to him, and he didn't do a lot of pick-n-roll in high school.
"Being the four at the top (of the key) creates driving lanes for me to go past a taller defender,'' Harris said. "It also gives me open positions to shoot the three.
"When I go in and drive, our five-man's defender steps up, so it opens up a pass to our five.''
Harris said the Cutters set was one of the things he liked about the Vols in recruiting.
"It opens the offense up for all of the guys on the floor,'' Harris said. "And it makes the defense move, a lot.
"I'd say right now I'm just growing.''