Can UT hit 100 again tonight?

With a big offensive performance, the Tennessee basketball team can make history tonight against East Tennessee State University. No Volunteer squad has ever scored 100 points in three consecutive games.

The 1957-58 Vols hit the century mark in back-to-back games, winning 100-91 at Florida and 104-83 vs. Mississippi State en route to a nondescript 16-7 record. That was the only team in program history to turn the trick until Bruce Pearl's current edition beat Texas 111-105 in overtime Dec. 23, then trounced Tennessee Tech 101-77 Dec. 28.

If the Vols can crack triple digits tonight, they will become the first UT team ever to do so back to back to back. For what it's worth, Tennessee surpassed the century mark in last year's meeting with ETSU, romping 106-83 in Pearl's regular-season Vol debut.

Tennessee brings a seven-game winning streak and an 11-2 overall record into tonight's 8 o'clock tipoff. The Bucs have won six of their last seven and stand 8-5 overall. They'll be facing long odds this evening, however. Pearl is 14-0 at home against non-conference opponents.

Tonight will be reunion night for Tennessee forward Dane Bradshaw. The 6-4 senior was a teammate of ETSU's Courtney Pigram and Travis Strong at Memphis White Station High School. The trio helped lead the team to back-to-back Class AAA state titles in 2002 and 2003.

Pigram, a 6-0 guard, is ETSU's leading scorer this year, checking in at 16.0 points per game. The other starting guard is 6-2 Tayloe Taylor, who averages 4.5 points and 4.3 assists per game. The Bucs' front line consists of 6-6, 210-pound Eryk Thomas (7.2 points, 5.1 rebounds), 6-8, 215-pound Andrew Reed (7.6 points, 4.4 rebounds) and 6-9, 250-pound Brad Nuckles (10.8 points, 7.5 rebounds).

Following tonight's game, the Vols will be inactive for seven days before hosting Mississippi State in their SEC opener Sunday, Jan. 7.


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