Higgins needs to pull trigger

Vol basketball coach Buzz Peterson preaches the importance of shot selection ... but senior guard Jon Higgins may be taking him too literally.

Higgins is hitting 44.8 percent from the floor and 43.4 percent from 3-point range this season. Clearly, he is one of the best outside shooters in the Southeastern Conference, yet he averages less than seven field-goal tries per game.

Although Higgins has hit some huge buckets this season -- a game-winning 50-footer at the buzzer against Georgia Tech and a game-tying 3-pointer at the regulation buzzer against Georgia -- he passes up good shots with alarming frequency.

Even Peterson admits that he'd like for Higgins to be less selective in deciding when to pull the trigger.

''If you look through his career, Jon looks for the opportunity to take the perfect shot in the right situation,'' Peterson said. ''That's what he waits for.... Jon is a very cautious person. Everything's got to be in line.

''What I've asked him to do some is take a chance, take a dare. 'Maybe you might not like that (shot) but we may need that, and that shot may go in. Step out a little bit and be a little bit more aggressive on the offensive end.' ''

Despite Peterson's urgings, Higgins remains reluctant to shoot the ball. Since attempting a season-high 12 shots Jan. 15 at Florida, his shot totals have been 7, 6, 9, 6, 10 (at Auburn), 4, 4, 7 and 5. From all appearances, aggressiveness just isn't his nature.

''With Jon, the situation has got to be perfect for him to go with something,'' Peterson said. ''That's how Jon is. I'm sure that's how he lives his life but we need him to be a tad more aggressive on the offensive end.''


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