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When was the last time Tennessee had a rebounder as productive as Jeronne Maymon? Sign in or subscribe now to find out.

Some people collect stamps. Some collect butterflies. Some collect coins. Tennessee junior Jeronne Maymon collects rebounds.

He collected 20 of them Nov. 22 against Memphis and collected 19 more Saturday against Auburn. In case you're wondering, the last time a Vol recorded 19 or more rebounds multiple times in a season was in 1976-77, when Bernard King posted 20 each against Ole Miss and Vanderbilt, plus 19 against Kentucky.

Maymon is averaging 8.2 rebounds per game, which ranks best among Tennessee players and No. 5 among all SEC players. If you discount a three-game stretch (Chaminade, Oakland, Pitt) when a sprained ankle limited him to seven total rebounds, Maymon would be averaging 9.2 rebounds per game.

Clearly, the 6-foot-7, 265-pound junior is a beast on the boards, a knack he exhibited in impressive fashion against Auburn.

"I was just trying to get in position," he said, "be in the right place at the right time, try to carve out space before the shot went up so I was in good position to get the rebound."

Those skills provide a good start toward being a quality rebounder.

"And anticipation," Maymon added. "You've got to have a little luck to it. The ball has to bounce your way. You've got to be in the vicinity and go get it with two hands."

It should be noted that Auburn gave Maymon plenty of rebound opportunities by missing 39 of its 56 field-goal attempts.

"Exactly," he said with a laugh. "The more missed shots, the more rebounds. If they was making a lot of shots there wouldn't be that many rebounds."

Maymon's 19-rebound effort Saturday evening may have surprised some people but it didn't surprise Vol teammate Trae Golden.

"Every time Jeronne goes out there he's going to be able to get a huge game," Golden said. "It was an amazing effort. He's one of the best rebounders in the SEC, so it was good for us."

Maymon's ability to clean the glass and make quick outlet passes enabled Tennessee to get some transition baskets en route to a 30-16 halftime lead on Saturday.

"It helps a lot," Golden said. "You saw in the first half that we got our transition game really going. When we can do that, get our guys open 3s and open looks down low, that's something big for us."

Auburn head man Tony Barbee was quite impressed with Maymon's performance.

"He's just a physical presence, and he thinks every time the ball hits the rim it's his," Barbee said. "Those are the kinds of big guys you want.... It's a toughness thing; rebounding is all about toughness."

Auburn might have been more successful in keeping Maymon off the boards if the Tigers weren't also struggling with another wide-bodied Vol, 6-foot-8, 270-pound mid-term freshman Jarnell Stokes.

"Most definitely," Maymon said. "When me and him is in they can't send two guys to block me out. It's better when I can go one on one to go get the rebound."

Stokes' arrival also coincided with an increase in Maymon's offensive efficiency. In SEC play only, he leads the league in field-goal percentage (61.2) and leads the Vols in scoring (13.6 points per game). His production would be even higher if he could hit his free throws. He made just 5 of 9 tries versus Auburn and is hitting a mere 61.5 percent for the season.

"I still think he has a ways to go to be the best he can be," Vol head man Cuonzo Martin said. "He needs to continue to push himself and gain confidence. Once he gets up around 70 to 75 percent from the free-throw line I think it'll be extremely tough to defend him."

In addition to rebounding and scoring, Maymon is pretty good at defending. He leads the Vols in steals with 10 through the first six conference games. Basically, he believes it's all in a day's work.

"If you don't take pride in your defense that really hurts the team, and I don't think you should be out there on the floor," Maymon said. "I think everybody's getting to the point where it hurts and people don't like to get scored on."


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