Josh Richardson to gain culture, experience, with Athletes in Action

Tennessee guard Josh Richardson (1) swipes the ball from MTSU guard Marcos Knight (14) during the first half of the NIT second-round game at Thompson-Boling Arena Monday, March 19, 2012.  (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Brimer, copyright © 2012

Tennessee guard Josh Richardson (1) swipes the ball from MTSU guard Marcos Knight (14) during the first half of the NIT second-round game at Thompson-Boling Arena Monday, March 19, 2012. (ADAM BRIMER/NEWS SENTINEL)

Tennessee men's basketball coach Cuonzo Martin said he's looking forward to rising sophomore Josh Richardson picking up "some tricks of the trade" from his teammates with the Athletes in Action basketball program these next few weeks.

The 10-member team, which will play an exhibition tour in Poland and Germany May 26-June 10, was announced on Monday.

Richardson, who can play small forward, shooting guard and point guard, is the lone member from an SEC school.

"I think this will give Josh a chance to gauge himself against guys from different programs,'' said Martin, who played a professional season in Italy in 1997. "The talent level is raised, and you can learn a lot of tricks of the trade from different players and teammates.

"Off the court, it's a cultural experience getting the opportunity to experience Poland and Germany.''

The team will tour the infamous Auschwitz concentration camp while on the trip.

Baylor director of operations Tim Maloney will coach the team, with assistance from Liberty graduate assistant Pawel Mrozik. Tarleton State's Steve Simpson will serve as the team athletic trainer.

The trip begins with five practice days in Poland, after which it will play three games against the Polish National Team (June 1-3) before traveling to Germany to face five professional club teams (Essen, Dusseldorf, Paderborn, Alba and Stahnsdorf). Athletes

Athletes In Action is a Christian sports organization that's active in 75 countries, on nearly 125 U.S. college campuses and with 35 U.S. professional sports teams.

In addition to Richardson, a defensive stopper who started nine games for the Vols and averaged 2.9 points and 16 minutes per contest, the team includes:

Deuce Bello, guard, Baylor

Drew Barham, guard, Memphis

Daniel Coursey, center, Mercer

Christian Garrett, guard, Kansas

Karol Gruszecki, guard, Texas-Arlington

Brady Heslip, guard, Baylor

Jordan Juenemann, guard, Kansas

Akii Mitchell, forward, Virginia

Jordan Reeves, center, Texas-Arlington

Jamil Wilson, forward, Marquette

Interviews Begin: Martin said he will begin interviewing for the vacant strength and conditioning coaching position today after Troy Wills was not retained.

"We'll fill the spot when we find the best candidate,'' Martin said. "Hopefully, that will be in the next two weeks.''

Mike Griffith covers Tennessee sports. Follow him on twitter at http://twitter.com/MikeGriffith32

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Comments » 7

underthehill writes:

Josh has excellent physical skills, toughness, competitor, anticipates well on offense and defense, speed, ability to create his shot w/o a screen..has to hit the high percentage shots he creates..and then he will be solid...hope he does it...

Snapshot writes:

I hope he is able to step up his offence a bit, and he will become a solid player for the Vols. Should be a great experience for him.

johnlg00 writes:

Josh, have fun, see a lot, learn a lot, and don't forget to pick up a jumper while you're gone.

Chris4Vols22 writes:

in response to johnlg00:

Josh, have fun, see a lot, learn a lot, and don't forget to pick up a jumper while you're gone.

Richardson has the most consistent mid-range jumper on the team.

bosscat writes:

Refreshing to read a positive, informative article about a UT athlete followed by positive comments from UT followers and fans. No, this isn't earth-shaking news, but information about the Vols and comments by caring fans are the main reasons I subscribe.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

in response to Chris4Vols22:

Richardson has the most consistent mid-range jumper on the team.

I also would like to see Josh improve his shooting. Look at his stats.
I'm glad he's in a position this summer to play some team ball and get this cultural experience as well as playing ball.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to Chris4Vols22:

Richardson has the most consistent mid-range jumper on the team.

If so, that's not saying a lot, unfortunately. I guess I could be wrong, but my impression was that Richardson shot around 30% from the field last season. He was a bit more effective within 10' or so than I expected. He has made the occasional 3-pointer. However, if I needed one guy to get his own shot to win the game, he isn't the one I would go to right now.

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