John Adams: After unexpected start, finish was unfortunately expected

John Adams
Tennessee's Ariel Massengale (5) intercepts a pass intended by Notre Dame's Michaela Mabrey (23) at Thompson-Boling Arena on Monday, January 20, 2014. Tennessee lost to Notre Dame 70-86. 
  
 (SAUL YOUNG/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Saul Young, 2014 Knoxville News Sentinel

Tennessee's Ariel Massengale (5) intercepts a pass intended by Notre Dame's Michaela Mabrey (23) at Thompson-Boling Arena on Monday, January 20, 2014. Tennessee lost to Notre Dame 70-86. (SAUL YOUNG/NEWS SENTINEL)

Notre Dame isn’t accustomed to trailing. But its quick adjustment to an unfamiliar role left Tennessee reeling Monday night at Thompson-Boling Arena.

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Comments » 13

jmtellico#1438721 writes:

I said it wouldn't be close and it wasn't. Same old Simmons. She hits a layup too hard off the board and makes really out of control turnovers. Holly's "vetern" backcourt threw two horible passes across court which were intercepted for easy layups. The Vols even gave up two fast break layups....off of made freethrows. Figure that. In the second half, ND took away the close passes for layups giving up short jumpers instead. Of course, this bad shooting team couldn't even make those. After last game and this game where a Vol falls onto the court trying to throw it in, a player finally made an ally ball play. One you learn in Middle School. You can't get it in, throw it off the defensive players butt, step onto the court and grab the ball and put in the layup. It took them this long for that very simple play. This team doesn't have BB smarts, throws it away too often, has a weak defense and can't shoot. Other than that, they are just great.

magicbyswh#221420 writes:

This Vols team is just terrible. They are better than most average teams but not close to the elite teams. My oh my how far they have fallen with out Pat. Warlick was the worst hire but was cheap and available. Surely Pat can see now Warlick was not the one to keep us on top.

underthehill writes:

Hit 14 of 21..then miss 17 of 18..along with unforced turnovers that would embarrass a good high school team..and what do you get..a team that needs to do some passing drills until they get this resolved would help...and a team with a go to play to score when you hit a dry spell..unlike some others..I did not expect the Lady Vols to panic and completely lose their poise when faced with a challenge..they can and should address this for what it is and not let it happen..it is true that when the going get's tough..the tough get going..that is what ND did and the Lady Vols did not respond..

bfaj34#1436246 writes:

It was not a good showing.

bfaj34#1436246 writes:

And why was Mercedes Russell the number one recruit again? And why are we saving Jannah when she is obviously better than anything we can put on the floor? And why is Cierra always out of position on three point shooters? And why can the whys go on forever and ever and ever, in particular, why can't everyone play like Andrea Carter? Sorry, just frustrated.

MaxVolFan writes:

in response to bfaj34#1436246:

And why was Mercedes Russell the number one recruit again? And why are we saving Jannah when she is obviously better than anything we can put on the floor? And why is Cierra always out of position on three point shooters? And why can the whys go on forever and ever and ever, in particular, why can't everyone play like Andrea Carter? Sorry, just frustrated.

I will be frustrated too until we beat a good team. I hope that's TXAM Thursday. Russell only 17 mins no foul trouble , Jannahs redshirt should be lifted if she's 90% healthy and can contribute. 10 mins without producing is too long for Jasmine to be out there last night. Adjustment or the lack of lost the game. Make your players step up by only going 6-7 deep no more.

Theo writes:

Some of the stupidest comments I've ever seen. I barely know where to start.
MR is playing great for a freshman center. Good grief one of you screams she's no good and the next screams because she's not playing 40 minutes.
JT has been on campus two weeks after going through a very tough time. She also has a knee that is not fully healed yet some on here are ready for her to play. Who cares if she doesn't know the system, might re-injure her knee or is just plain not emotionally ready. Nope, play her now - not for any good reason just appease an incensed "fan".
Have none of you ever played a sport? Have none of you ever had a slump? Better to have it now than March.
I know this will sound odd but in order to win, this team needs to win. This looks like the basketball yips to me. Holly just hammering them, like some of the folks on here, seems like the absolute wrong thing.
And regarding this coaching staff. Great job last year and 33% of the way through year 2. Isn't it a bit of over reaction to say Holly isn't up to the job. A bunch of fans never wanted her in the first place and now with a couple of losses they see their chance.
This team and staff are going to be fine if they can just calm down and play within themselves. Something I would also suggest for the panic stricken on here.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to bfaj34#1436246:

And why was Mercedes Russell the number one recruit again? And why are we saving Jannah when she is obviously better than anything we can put on the floor? And why is Cierra always out of position on three point shooters? And why can the whys go on forever and ever and ever, in particular, why can't everyone play like Andrea Carter? Sorry, just frustrated.

You and a number of others are no doubt experiencing much of what the team and staff must be feeling, but without the personal consequences in the actual outcomes. With all the experience Holly and the rest of the staff have had; all the colleagues and situations they have encountered; all the players they have scouted, recruited, counseled, and coached--you would think that if there were a simple solution to the team's problems, they would have thought of it by now.

How do you think Roy Williams feels right now? How does one team beat UK, MichSt, and Louisville, and lose to Belmont, UAB, Clemson, etc.? Has Roy just forgotten how to coach? Duke has been just as schizophrenic. Did Coach K forget how to coach? It's just that some nights their guys come ready to play and WIN and some nights they don't. Holly may not be the most articulate person in the world, but everything she says makes pretty good sense to me. I would not in any case expect to agree with her about everything, nor would that disagreement mean either one of us was right or wrong.

I don't mean to pick on you. You were quite articulate and fair in your comment--those were all good questions. I share the frustration everybody is feeling. I just don't think our negative thoughts and talk are helping, if by "helping" one means advancing the program.

There just ARE collections of players who do not jell into a cohesive unit. It is surprising that there as many such units as there are. It may have nothing to do with what any of us would think of as personal antagonism or the like. It's like a form of ADD; they know what to do but constantly having to tell oneself, or be told by a snarling coach, what they are supposed to be doing--as opposed to what impulse directs--is wearing on people. But it's not ONLY at UT.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to Theo:

Some of the stupidest comments I've ever seen. I barely know where to start.
MR is playing great for a freshman center. Good grief one of you screams she's no good and the next screams because she's not playing 40 minutes.
JT has been on campus two weeks after going through a very tough time. She also has a knee that is not fully healed yet some on here are ready for her to play. Who cares if she doesn't know the system, might re-injure her knee or is just plain not emotionally ready. Nope, play her now - not for any good reason just appease an incensed "fan".
Have none of you ever played a sport? Have none of you ever had a slump? Better to have it now than March.
I know this will sound odd but in order to win, this team needs to win. This looks like the basketball yips to me. Holly just hammering them, like some of the folks on here, seems like the absolute wrong thing.
And regarding this coaching staff. Great job last year and 33% of the way through year 2. Isn't it a bit of over reaction to say Holly isn't up to the job. A bunch of fans never wanted her in the first place and now with a couple of losses they see their chance.
This team and staff are going to be fine if they can just calm down and play within themselves. Something I would also suggest for the panic stricken on here.

Eloquent response to the free-floating angst wafting about in Big Orange Country these days. Some people are so quick to judge people and situations they cannot know much about first-hand. If their favorite team doesn't win, it's somebody's fault and somebody has to pay! Ultimately, yes, I suppose this is so. Even if it isn't all the coach's fault, it is usually the coach who has to go. It doesn't mean that the coach is an idiot, or a meanie, or a nonentity, or morally deficient. Same for the players, only moreso because of their youth.

snowpeapod#263184 writes:

in response to bfaj34#1436246:

And why was Mercedes Russell the number one recruit again? And why are we saving Jannah when she is obviously better than anything we can put on the floor? And why is Cierra always out of position on three point shooters? And why can the whys go on forever and ever and ever, in particular, why can't everyone play like Andrea Carter? Sorry, just frustrated.

Please explain how you know that Jannah is better than anyone we have. She has yet to play in a college game and you surely can't base your opinion on high school games, can you? I would love to think she is as good as has been reported but until I see her in action for a few games, I'll wait to make an observation on her skill level. I do hope she is what we want her to be.

VFL70 writes:

I am not an ex jock or anyone with superior basketball knowledge but I often feel that I have a good sense or gut feel for some teams with problems or issues. I knew a couple years before Fulmer was fired that something wasn't right with his staff or the program. The problem with the LVs predates Holly by a season or two. Whether team or staff chemistry or competence or both, it is obvious that something is not right. I always thought that the "Dean Smith" protocol would apply tp Pat and to that end it has. Holly is at best an interim coach. She does not strike me as strong HC material at least not strong to fix the problem. It's more than x's & o's. The program needs a very smart basketball coach that is a natural leader who will command respect.

jmtellico#1438721 writes:

THEO....You want to hear from a player. Well, in my younger days I played in Europe so I do know the game. I am NOT impressed with Holly. The 1st half against ND was a great half but ND made halftime adjustments and the VOL didn't. The Lady Vols panic, throw sloppy passes, loaf on defense. They even gave up fast break layups on a made Lady Vol foul shot. The guard lets a pass go over her head to the ND player.....loafing. Simmons is so out of control that whatever offense she contributes is so offset by her turnovers. This team just isn't very smart and can't adjust to the other teams adjustments. That was never a Pat team. She could get a team to really turn on the defensive heat. This team while it is throwing the ball away, like they don't see the difference in jersey colors, is so slow on defense they give up such easy baskets. They are not a top 10 team and may even find theyselves even further down than they are now. The only thing that will save them is that there are only a very few really good teams. The Lady Vols fall somewhere below them. It could be worse, they haven't lost by 30 to UConn.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to jmtellico#1438721:

THEO....You want to hear from a player. Well, in my younger days I played in Europe so I do know the game. I am NOT impressed with Holly. The 1st half against ND was a great half but ND made halftime adjustments and the VOL didn't. The Lady Vols panic, throw sloppy passes, loaf on defense. They even gave up fast break layups on a made Lady Vol foul shot. The guard lets a pass go over her head to the ND player.....loafing. Simmons is so out of control that whatever offense she contributes is so offset by her turnovers. This team just isn't very smart and can't adjust to the other teams adjustments. That was never a Pat team. She could get a team to really turn on the defensive heat. This team while it is throwing the ball away, like they don't see the difference in jersey colors, is so slow on defense they give up such easy baskets. They are not a top 10 team and may even find theyselves even further down than they are now. The only thing that will save them is that there are only a very few really good teams. The Lady Vols fall somewhere below them. It could be worse, they haven't lost by 30 to UConn.

I'm afraid if the LVs played UConn the way they played the 2d half against ND, they would lose by 50! On the other hand, if they played the way they did in the first 15 minutes against ND, they can play with anyone. I agree with you that there would be only the slimmest discernible difference among, say, 20 teams at the rung below the, say, top three, and likely not to be sorted out until...whenever.

I am hoping Holly succeeds and grows into this awesome job. It would only be right for a true daughter of Tennessee to carry on the proud work of another good Tennessee gal. If the LVs can find a way to rebound strongly from this latest embarrassment, Holly may look a lot better as a coach than she does right now. It's easy for a fan to sit in the stands or behind a keyboard and act as if they know for a fact what the LVs ought to do in such and such a situation. One may be wrong, one may be right--who knows, who cares, what does it matter? Some years for some teams, going through a season is like going through a meat-grinder; even if a usable product comes out the other side, it is changed beyond recognition. Perhaps the LVs are changing into a championship team right this moment. I agree that it isn't likely, but it isn't completely impossible. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.

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