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Lady Vols at Mississippi, 9 PM Eastern

This will be the last time the Lady Vols play against Valencia MacFarland in the regular season.

She wants to play so badly she can taste it.
She wants to play so badly she can taste it.
Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

TV / Stream: CSS / ESPN3

Radio: Ole Mickey

Stats: The way we were....

Tennessee already hosted Ole Miss earlier this year, winning 94-70 in a game that probably went about as expected. Despite having one of the best SEC point guards (Valencia MacFarland), Ole Miss just doesn't yet have the talent to beat Tennessee when the Lady Vols play well. In that game, The Lady Rebels failed to have a double-digit scorer, while Harrison, Simmons, Massengale, and Carter all pulled that feat for Tennessee.

So really, there nothing to add to the preview that wasn't already written in the first one (repeated link here). Rather than offer them/us sets of bullets, I'll just summarize my thoughts in one list.

  • Ole Miss was last seen losing at home to Florida 81-60. Florida's an up-and-down team this year, so that win really doesn't say much other than that Florida was "up". The Rebels ran 9 deep despite not having foul trouble, so they should probably be expected to do the same against Tennessee.
  • Ariel Massengale is reportedly not going to be available tonight, so Andraya Carter will handle the point again. In the long run, this is beneficial experience for Carter, but getting Massengale healthy and back in rhythm will very important with a stretch of top-end SEC teams looming large on the schedule.
  • As like last time, Mississippi doesn't have an answer for Tennessee's interior play. Unlike last time, the team seems to be playing together better right now, and post play is much more confident.
  • Sunday's game against Alabama featured some very odd lineups (Russell/Graves/Jones/Reynolds/Carter, for one). I think that was a function of protecting Harrison against fouls and Simmons sitting with 2 fouls early in the first half, but that happened when Tennessee was struggling midway through the first. It might be worth watching lineups to see if Warlick has a few more of those on the floor.
  • Against Alabama, the zone defense worked well. Against Arkansas, man defense did really well. It's nice to see success from one of each in two consecutive games.
  • This is your reminder that it took Baylor all that Sims had, plus some fantastic work by Lisa Mattingly to beat Ole Miss in Waco. Baylor got the Mattingwin by making 10 more free throws than the Rebels while winning by only 7.

Prediction: 87 - 69 Tennessee. It's about time for them to drop out of their funk.

Mattingly Radar: Low. She continued her Midwest tour in Ames, Iowa last night, so it's not likely the NCAA will ship her to Oxford for this one. But even if she refs the game, her presence is concern simply because Tennessee is the road team and it would be really nice to have Harrison in the game for more than three minutes.