Bruce Pearl on Jordan McRae's suspension
Tennessee freshman wing Jordan McRae has been suspended from the Vols’ practices and games this week after a verbal altercation on the team bus last Friday.
McRae did not play in Saturday’s loss at Connecticut and his suspension was announced after the game.
“What has been reported is accurate,’’ Pearl said. “Jordan has been suspended indefinitely.’’
McRae practiced with the team at the University of Hartford on Friday prior to the team’s tour of ESPN studios in Bristol, Conn.
Sources that witnessed what happened after that, speaking on the condition of anonymity because UT is not releasing the details of the incident, have told the News Sentinel that McRae got into a verbal altercation with a teammate on the bus ride back.
On the way back from the ESPN campus in Bristol, Conn., with UT donors riding on the same bus, the players’ playful banter grew loud, according to sources.
Pearl, who coached against Connecticut, did not accompany the team on the bus to ESPN studios.
That left Vols associate head coach Tony Jones in charge, and Jones went to the back of the bus to ask the players to quiet down out of respect to the donors.
The noise subsided for a while, but the banter grew loud again, and this time inappropriate language was used by McRae.
Vols assistant coach Steve Forbes made the next trip to the back of the bus, quieting things down for the remainder of the ride.
The UT assistant coaches met with Pearl upon arriving back at the team hotel, and after calling McRae’s parents, it was determined that suspending McRae for his language would be the proper course of action, according to the sources.
Pearl has not set the length of the suspension, but he said he does have a timetable in mind.
McRae will practice on his own until rejoining the team.