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Tennessee Guard James Daniel III: “I expect to start.”

He’s ready to make an impact.

NCAA Basketball: Kentucky at Tennessee Bryan Lynn-USA TODAY Sports

Incoming guard James Daniel III told Jimmy Hyams that he expects to start this season for Tennessee on Hyams’ radio show yesterday.

Daniel graduated from Howard University this month, but will play out his final season of eligibility at Tennessee. Daniel chose Tennessee over Ohio State and DePaul, becoming a huge piece of the puzzle for Rick Barnes this season.

His now former coach Kevin Nickelberry, gave a glowing review of the 5th year senior.

I think Daniel’s assessment of the roster is correct. He should absolutely start. The departures of Shembari Phillips and Kwe Parker freed up some minutes, but left the Vols short handed at guard. Now with Daniel potentially in line to start, Barnes now has options. He can turn to Jordan Bone, Jordan Bowden, Chris Darrington and Lamonte Turner to start or come off the bench. The Vols can now go legitimately five deep at the one and two spots.

Daniel brings something that the other don’t, however, which is a pure ability to score. The guy can fill it up. In his last full year, he led the nation in scoring, shooting 33 percent from 3 point range in the process. He certainly seems like he will be a big time difference maker for the Vols this season. Maybe, just maybe he can lead them back to the big dance.