'Life after Lamonte' begins Saturday vs. Wisconsin

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT.) -- The Tennessee men's basketball team returns to Thompson-Boling Arena Saturday afternoon to host Wisconsin in its last non-conference game until late January.

WVLT will air a 30-minute preview show starting at 1 p.m. ahead of CBS' national broadcast at 1:30.

This will be the fifth meeting all-time between Wisconsin and Tennessee, with the series knotted at two wins apiece. A victory would push Barnes' win percentage above .500 against current members of the Big Ten.

The Vols snapped a two-game losing streak on Saturday afternoon with a 22-point win over Jacksonville State. The victory was the 700th in Rick Barnes' 32-year coaching career.

Barnes' milestone victory lap was cut short by the news of senior point guard Lamonte Turner's decision to undergo season-ending surgery. Turner announced after the game he was recently diagnosed with Thoracic outlet syndrome - a nerve condition that can cause pain in the neck and shoulders. The fifth-year Tennessee head coach maintained a positive outlook when speaking to the media Thursday afternoon.

"We just keep going. You'll be shocked at how little adjustments we do make because we believe in our system. From day one we teach it and we think that you can do some tweaks here and there, but in terms of the overall adjustment it won't be drastic," said Barnes.

Turner was heralded as the Vols' best on-ball defender by Barnes. The Alabama native scored 1,086 points and averaged 10.2 points and 3.3 assists per game in his 106 career games.

Turner's announcement comes as the Vols made a mid-season addition to the roster in the form of international player Santiago Vescovi. A 6'2" guard from Uruguay, Vescovi will begin classes in January. He must await standard NCAA and SEC clearance protocols before becoming eligible to compete in games, and a decision on whether or not he will compete this season has yet to be made.



 
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