UT targets Oak Hill guards

Is Buzz Peterson on the verge of securing a package deal?

Tennessee's head basketball coach is heavily recruiting K.C. Rivers, a 6-4, 210-pound junior shooting guard from Oak Hill (Va.) Academy. Rivers, who transferred in from Independence High of Charlotte, N.C., reportedly averaged just 8 points per game in 2003-04 but set a school record by draining 15 3-point baskets in one February contest.

Oak Hill head coach Steve Smith recently told Mike Hughes of InsideTheVille.com that the Vols and the Virginia Cavaliers are chasing Rivers the hardest. Smith added that Virginia Tech, North Carolina State and Florida also have shown interest.

Jamont Gordon, another 6-4 junior guard who ranks high on Tennessee's wish list, recently announced plans to transfer from Nashville Glencliff High to Oak Hill Academy for the 2004-05 season. That means he and Rivers will be teammates next winter.

With luck, the Vols could land both of them during the early signing period in November. That package deal would strengthen the UT backcourt for years to come.

The Big Orange was seriously lacking in outside shooters during the 2003-04 season -- Scooter McFadgon being the only consistent threat. The return from illness of Jordan Howell, who redshirted last season, and the recent signing of Kentucky's Mr. Basketball Chris Lofton of Maysville, should alleviate that problem somewhat.

Landing two backcourt players the caliber of Gordon and Rivers would further upgrade an area that was woefully weak last season.

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