During his weekly media luncheon on Monday, Martin said those expectations have lowered some.
But not much.
“I thought it would be six,” Martin said. “But it’s five right now.”
And yes. The Vols are destined for the dance, according to their coach.
“Yeah, yeah,” Martin said. “But you’ve got to be there. When you’re talking about the best teams in the country, Tennessee is one of them. But you have to finish the job.”
UT (14-7, 5-3 SEC) hopes to notch its third win in a row when it plays Vanderbilt (12-8, 4-4) on Wednesday (Not Televised, 8:02 p.m.) at Memorial Gym in Nashville.
The Commodores have rattled off three wins in a row despite playing with just seven scholarship players.
“They don’t have a lot of guys,” Martin said. “But they’re a talented team, a well-coached team. We will have our work cut out for us.”
*UT is back in consideration for the Associated Press Top 25. The Vols received two points in the most recent poll.
*Martin’s record at UT in the month of February is now 14-3. Asked for the secret, he answered: “A lot of praying.”
*Martin had high praise for junior forward Jarnell Stokes after Stokes scored 22 points and pulled down 16 rebounds against Alabama.
“Jarnell is playing well, as well as any big guy in the country as far as I’m concerned,” Martin said.