There's been plenty to work on in preparation for No. 23 Wichita State's (9-0) visit to Thompson-Boling arena Thursday (TV: MyVLT, 7 p.m.)
"Everything is magnified right now because Jeronne (Maymon) is out and we had two games under 40 points," junior point guard Trae Golden said Tuesday. "We're fine. It's still early in the season."
Seven games into the year, the Vols' 61.4 points per game ranks 288th in the country. Missed shots aren't solely responsible.
The troubles stem from too few shots and few easy buckets.
UT is averaging .98 points per possession. Not terrible, but not good either. The problem is Martin's team registers just 62.4 possessions per game, ranking 330th nationally.
Fifth-ranked Florida averages 62.9 possessions per 40 minutes. The difference? The Gators are tied for eighth nationally with 1.17 points per possession.
For UT, every possession is a grind and transition baskets are hard to come by.
"I'd love to get out and run," Martin said.
But UT's defense ranks 345th out of 347 teams with 3.6 steals per game. Two players, Santa Clara's Kevin Foster and Syracuse's Michael Carter-Williams, average more than that.
While Martin's staunch defense has held opponents from scoring, it hasn't produced scoring opportunities for the Vols. Don't look for the defense to start cheating to produce turnovers, though.
"Our defense will never change, that is what it is," Martin said.
Thus, if transition scoring is to be had, it will have to come off defensive rebounding, an emphasis the past six days.
"When our bigs get the rebound they're so concentrated on getting the ball to Trae, instead of just getting it to the closest guard and going out running," Jordan McRae said. "We're getting all that adjusted."
Maymon Update: While Martin still has no timetable for any potential return for Jeronne Maymon (right knee), the injured senior forward is at least making some improvements physically. Maymon has recently been seen riding a stationary bike and walking on the treadmill.
Though minimal, it's progress from a few weeks ago when Maymon visibly struggled to walk on his own. That said, his recovery from knee surgery appears far from complete. There is no schedule for his return to practice, let alone game action.
As budding talk of a possible medical redshirt continues to stir, UT director of compliance Todd Dooley confirmed to the News Sentinel that, if necessary, Maymon is eligible for a redshirt. No special NCAA waiver would be necessary.
While many former transfers face difficulty redshirting a full season, Maymon's case is different. He left Marquette nine games into his freshman year in 2009-10 and played the second half of 2010-11 at UT. As a result, even if he sits out the entire 2012-13 season, Maymon can still play four years in a five-year window, thus complying with NCAA eligibility rules.
Brendan F. Quinn covers Tennessee men's basketball. Follow him at Twitter.com/BFQuinn