Travon Landry picked UT over Vandy, others

Cuonzo Martin talks about Trae Golden's performance on the court

Travon Landry, Tennessee's newest basketball commitment, said Thursday he just knew it was time to pledge his services to the Vols on his unofficial visit last weekend.

"I talked to my mom and dad about it, and they said, 'Whenever you are ready,' " said Landry, a junior at Bob Jones High School in Madison, Ala. "I just felt like it was the right time to do it.''

Landry, a 6-foot-1, 170-pound point guard, said he had a scholarship offer from Vanderbilt, and that Alabama, Auburn, Virginia Tech, Texas A&M and Georgetown were all actively recruiting him.

"I just really felt I should be at Tennessee,'' said Landry, who attended last Saturday's game against Pittsburgh at Thompson-Boling Arena. "The basketball part of it, I liked the way Coach (Cuonzo) Martin lets his point guard lead the team, because I consider myself a leader on the court first.

"The school fits all my criteria — I take my school seriously. I want to major in sport management, and Tennessee has a good program in that.''

Landry is averaging about 15 points and six assists per game this season for Bob Jones High, located near Huntsville.

Landry's father is retired military, and the family moved to Alabama from San Antonio last summer.

Already, Landry said he has gotten a reaction from his classmates after making a verbal commitment to sign with Tennessee next November.

"They just walk by me and say, 'Roll Tide,' '' Landry said with a chuckle. "I'd been to Alabama twice, for a red-and-white (basketball) scrimmage, and I watched them practice and went to their football game with Tennessee.''

Landry's primary recruiter is UT assistant Tracy Webster, a former All-Big Ten point guard at Wisconsin.

Landry said the Vols started recruiting him in early October, and he was quickly impressed.

Rivals.com rates Landry as a three-star prospect, but he said he's not too concerned with that.

"I really don't worry about what the ratings are,'' he said. "Once you get on the court, you either put up or shut up.''

Landry said his quickness is his greatest strength and he takes pride in his defense, but that he still needs to "shore up my jumper.''

Mike Griffith covers Tennessee men's basketball. Follow him at http://twitter.com/MikeGriffith32

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Comments » 34

sly_stone99#434111 writes:

Wouldn't he be a senior in HS if he is committing with hopes to play next season? Just asking, because the article called him a Junior at Bob Jones HS.

lomas98 writes:

He is part of the class of 2013. He is currently a junior in high school. If the article said he has hopes of playing next season, it is wrong. I didn't read it said that.

sly_stone99#434111 writes:

Thx Lomas, surprising to see much conversation on a 2013 commit. Kids these days change their minds constantly and 2013 seems a ways off.

VolunteerLifer writes:

in response to sly_stone99#434111:

Thx Lomas, surprising to see much conversation on a 2013 commit. Kids these days change their minds constantly and 2013 seems a ways off.

Bingo. It's a long time to stay committed. We shall see. Meanwhile, where is that westknoxrepub guy who says Martin only gets kids that no one else wants?

SATCHMOE writes:

"Not worried about Rivals" I already know I love this kid. Get it done on the court is the right attitude son.WELCOME TO THE VOLNATION.

lomas98 writes:

in response to VolunteerLifer:

Bingo. It's a long time to stay committed. We shall see. Meanwhile, where is that westknoxrepub guy who says Martin only gets kids that no one else wants?

Basketball recruiting is a little different than football and an early signing period. Scholarships are in less numbers and other schools will probably not pursue him too hard like in football. You are right though, he could easily change his mind

VOLsince68 writes:

Welcome to the hill Mr. Landry!!

GO VOLS!!!

thevoice writes:

If Stallings wants him, he's good enough for me.

born2ride writes:

Maybe after a few years he can develop into a good player.

VOL1972 writes:

Another 3 star. Do I see a trend here?

VOL1972 writes:

I like his size. If he's right about his quickness. If he's a Jr. Martin saw something. It will be interesting to see what the scouts think of him this time next year.

kyletrktr writes:

One of my friends, a freshman, blocked his shot a couple times a two or three days ago. Fortunately, I don't think that says anything about this guy.. I was extremely impressed, Go Vols!

VolunteerLifer writes:

in response to VOL1972:

Another 3 star. Do I see a trend here?

Do you really think a star rating is very meaningful in a kid's Jr year in HS? I don't.

Sir_Spanky writes:

Probably noticed Golden playing out of control and saw an opportunity for himself.

easleychuck writes:

in response to VOL1972:

Another 3 star. Do I see a trend here?

Another star-crossed lover.

westknoxrepub writes:

in response to VolunteerLifer:

Bingo. It's a long time to stay committed. We shall see. Meanwhile, where is that westknoxrepub guy who says Martin only gets kids that no one else wants?

We got one three star point guard a couple of other SEC schools wanted. He'll still be surrounded by the Atlantic Sun All Star team unless Martin steps it up. He needs to get Stokes.

cooper65#432178 writes:

in response to easleychuck:

Another star-crossed lover.

I think stars matter, but, of course, there are exceptions. However, I would prefer a team of 4/5* as opposed to 3*. As someone else pointed, he's only a junior and the stars don't matter so much.

VolunteerLifer writes:

in response to westknoxrepub:

We got one three star point guard a couple of other SEC schools wanted. He'll still be surrounded by the Atlantic Sun All Star team unless Martin steps it up. He needs to get Stokes.

He's a junior, westknox. C'mon, man. A lot of people are later bloomers. If he turns into a four star in his senior year, and we had passed on him when we could have had him in his junior year because only two other SEC schools wanted him then, wouldn't you be the first to complain that Martin can't recognize talent when he first sees it? Maybe what you are seeing is that Martin can see talent before others do. Give him a chance.

Have you noticed that Washpun and Richardson are giving us very good minutes in support roles as true freshmen? Does Martin get credit for that? Yes, he does.

And, BTW, he doesn't NEED to get Stokes, though that would be nice. He needs to get a good power forward, whether Stokes or not, because both Miller and Maymon are seniors next year, and we essentially have no one else on the team to take their places when they go.

volboy81 writes:

in response to FLVOL79:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Vandy has a ship?

crimsonviper writes:

in response to BIVOLAR_BEAR:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Props to you,Big...That made me chuckle...GBO!

VolunteerLifer writes:

in response to volboy81:

Vandy has a ship?

They don't call them the commodores for nothing. Then again, I guess they do.

johnlg00 writes:

Good signing. Getting a true, dedicated PG might help get some bigger guys to sign with him. When he gets here Golden will be a senior, so he can get experience behind Golden without being totally responsible for running the offense right out of the box.

johnlg00 writes:

On rereading the article, I noticed that Landry thinks he has to "shore up [his] jumper". Glad he at least realizes that now while he has a chance to get better at it before he gets here. It is that inability or lack of confidence to stick a jumper that is limiting Washpun's contribution to the team right now.

BigOrangeSmoker writes:

I havent seen anything from this coach that tells me he's worthy of a talent like Landry.I live in Huntsville and have seen him play 3 games this year and he is twice the talent than ive seen from 99% of the entire UT team.Hoping to speak to Landry soon.I hate to see him waste away his future

johnlg00 writes:

in response to BigOrangeSmoker:

I havent seen anything from this coach that tells me he's worthy of a talent like Landry.I live in Huntsville and have seen him play 3 games this year and he is twice the talent than ive seen from 99% of the entire UT team.Hoping to speak to Landry soon.I hate to see him waste away his future

We haven't seen anything from you that suggests why anyone of reasonable intelligence should care at all what you think. If Landry is a good as you say, he could start immediately at UT and push Golden to shooting guard, or he could understudy Golden as a freshman and take over with some game experience as a sophomore. Why WOULDN'T a good player take advantage of an opportunity like that?

VolunteerLifer writes:

Golden, at 6'1", will not be a shooting guard. We have too many people in the 6'5" to 6'7" range to take that position, not mention 6'3" McBee. He will either be a starting or supporting point guard. Washpun will either overtake him or not. One of them will be starter and the other supporter until another pg joins the team. If it's Landry, he'll hit the program when Golden is a senior and Washpun a junior. He'll study under them for one year and move into the rotation the next. That's the way it looks from here, anyway.

Criticisim of Golden's work so far is premature. He is a little-played, young sophomore. He has made great strides from his freshman year to play pg. With Washpun pushing him, I'll be surprised if he doesn't improve, especially defensively. He is learning to distribute the ball, and doing a good job of it. When he gains judgement about when to shoot and when not to, he'll be very effective as an offensive pg. If Washpun increases his offensive prowess, he'll challenge Golden for the position. If not, he'll be a valuable back-up. I think the future looks very good at pg with these two pushing each other.

BigOrangeSmoker writes:

in response to johnlg00:

We haven't seen anything from you that suggests why anyone of reasonable intelligence should care at all what you think. If Landry is a good as you say, he could start immediately at UT and push Golden to shooting guard, or he could understudy Golden as a freshman and take over with some game experience as a sophomore. Why WOULDN'T a good player take advantage of an opportunity like that?

you say " Why WOULDN'T a good player take advantage of an opportunity like that?" and i say because we aint got a coach smart enough to coach him up...Martin has no business coaching in the SEC

johnlg00 writes:

in response to BigOrangeSmoker:

you say " Why WOULDN'T a good player take advantage of an opportunity like that?" and i say because we aint got a coach smart enough to coach him up...Martin has no business coaching in the SEC

You have no business posting on here with such a stunning lack of knowledge of basketball. You have been told over and over by numerous posters to just look at the numbers and the games to see that most of the returning players are MUCH better than they showed last year. Even some of his much-maligned signees are contributing more than many thought they would. At least some of that HAS to be because Martin has seen what these guys do well and what they do poorly and maximized the former and minimized the latter. I can't see any reasons other than ignorance and/or prejudice that would cause you to ignore evidence that is right before your eyes if you would only look and understand what you are seeing.

johnlg00 writes:

PS to BOS: I'll make it easier for you. Name ONE player on the current squad who is WORSE than he showed last year. The most you can say is that a couple of guys AREN'T much better than they were last year, but some of that has to be on the players themselves. As I said before, you can TEACH players/students but you can't LEARN them.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to VOL1972:

I like his size. If he's right about his quickness. If he's a Jr. Martin saw something. It will be interesting to see what the scouts think of him this time next year.

I'm not sure how much his stock will go up in the recruit rankings even if his game continues to get better. I get the impression that the rating services sometimes seem to hold an early commitment against a guy unless he commits to one of the marquee programs. Other schools often stop recruiting a guy so hard once he commits early, and the number of top-flight schools recruiting a guy is one factor in compiling those ratings. However, if a guy backs off from an early commitment and reopens his recruiting and other schools, especially the big names, start recruiting him again, the services start looking at him again and his stock may go up.

BigOrangeSmoker writes:

in response to johnlg00:

PS to BOS: I'll make it easier for you. Name ONE player on the current squad who is WORSE than he showed last year. The most you can say is that a couple of guys AREN'T much better than they were last year, but some of that has to be on the players themselves. As I said before, you can TEACH players/students but you can't LEARN them.

seems as though you like comparing apples to oranges...Look at our record and who we beat and who beat us...no doubt we got outstanding talent but we just aint got a coach that knows what to do with that talent.Call it what you want at the end of the season maybe youll see...maybe not you might be one of the few martin supporters but i for 1 aint,he's got a long way to go to gain my support and he has a loosing record as ut coach already just thuink what it will be like at the end of the season

FanNotSheep writes:

I don't think Cuonzo should look too far ahead in recruiting. If he keeps losing home games to Austin Peay, someone else will be on the UT bench when the 2013 season tips.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to BigOrangeSmoker:

seems as though you like comparing apples to oranges...Look at our record and who we beat and who beat us...no doubt we got outstanding talent but we just aint got a coach that knows what to do with that talent.Call it what you want at the end of the season maybe youll see...maybe not you might be one of the few martin supporters but i for 1 aint,he's got a long way to go to gain my support and he has a loosing record as ut coach already just thuink what it will be like at the end of the season

If the team is still playing like they did Saturday at the end of the year, I will graciously concede your point. What has always annoyed me about most of your posts is that you decided before the first game that Martin just couldn't do the job when the majority of winning coaches at the big schools got their start at smaller ones. Martin's teams at MSU got better every year he was there. I agree that he hasn't had the start I hoped for here but it is early yet and they might fool us all before the year is over.

Dougb-VFL writes:

in response to BigOrangeSmoker:

I havent seen anything from this coach that tells me he's worthy of a talent like Landry.I live in Huntsville and have seen him play 3 games this year and he is twice the talent than ive seen from 99% of the entire UT team.Hoping to speak to Landry soon.I hate to see him waste away his future

I too live in this area and you are correct about his talent level but if you are just going to bash UT then you should join another site or just be happy that one of the locals will be a part of something special that chef cuonzo is cooking up! VFL

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