Pearl mum on J.P. Prince

A former Parade All-America high school basketball standout will be enrolling at Tennessee this week after transferring in from Arizona. That is the word from Gary Parrish of

J.P. Prince, a 6-foot-6 guard, is a former teammate of Vol senior Dane Bradshaw at Memphis White Station High School. Prince reportedly decided to leave Arizona after averaging just 2.2 points per game last season and playing in only three of the Wildcats' early-season games this winter.

Until Prince enrolls at UT, Vol head coach Bruce Pearl cannot speak to the accuracy of the transfer reports.

"I can't comment on recruiting," Pearl said at the end of his Tuesday news conference. "When there's something we can report, we'll release it."


The Vols went 12-4 in SEC play last year with Pearl holding his weekly news conferences in one of the meeting rooms at Thompson-Boling Arena. Moved to another meeting room this year, Pearl admitted being superstitious.

"If we start losing some games," he vowed last week, "we'll move back to the old room."

Sure enough, on the heels of a nine-game winning streak, the Vols lost back-to-back games at Vanderbilt and Ohio State last week. As a result, Pearl opened today's news conference with the words: "I tried to get the room changed … to no avail. We're still working on that for next week."


Perimeter defense has been a sore spot for Tennessee this season but it wasn't last weekend at Ohio State.

"Ohio State averages making nine 3s per game," Pearl noted, "and they made three and a half against us."

How does a team make one-half of a 3-pointer? It can't, of course. That was just Pearl's none-too-subtle way of pointing out that replays showed Ron Lewis' toe was on the line when he hit the game-winning trey with 11 seconds left Saturday in Columbus.

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