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Point guard Tyreke Key transfers to Tennessee

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The Volunteers grab their first portal piece.

NCAA Basketball: Missouri Valley Conference Tournament-Indiana State vs Loyola Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

One of the most coveted basketball transfers in the market has announced he’s heading to Tennessee. Indiana State guard Tyreke Key made his public announcement on Twitter Saturday afternoon.

Key’s recruitment involved some major schools, including the likes of Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Ole Miss. Tennessee always had one major advantage in their backpocket, however: Key is originally from Celina, Tennessee, not too far from Cookeville. The draw to be closer to home and to potentially start next season proved to be the winning factors for the Volunteers.

We gave an overview of what Key brings to the table in our previous article. The notable excerpt:

The graduate-transfer guard is a sharpshooter, connecting on 38 percent of his shots from deep in his last full season. Key hit 44 percent of his three-point attempts the year before that. Tennessee could be a natural fit for the veteran guard, who averaged 17 points per game in 2020-21. Coming off of shoulder surgery, there will be some questions about whether or not he can get back to that shooting ability...The Volunteers have Kennedy Chandler’s minutes to replace, along with some depth to fill after the departure of Victor Bailey Jr. They’ll add four-star guard BJ Edwards into this mix this fall.

Key getting back to full health is necessary if he wants to compete for reps. He showed a lot of promise in four seasons at Indiana State, and you don’t find many proven veteran point guards on the market. There’s some concern about why his 3-point shooting stats have dropped a bit since the high water mark in his sophomore season, but he is also more than just a 3-point specialist. He could thrive in Rick Barnes’ offense, if he can stay healthy.

Key is the first major addition through the transfer portal for Tennessee. The Volunteers have seen four players enter the portal in recent months, including Brandon Huntley-Hatfield, Victor Bailey Jr., Quentin Diboundje, and Handje Tamba. Expect them to continue adding more players soon.