A wild season of college basketball continued this midweek, as both Tennessee and North Carolina went down to unranked teams. North Carolina lost at Georgia Tech, while the Volunteers were upset by 13-point dog South Carolina.
Tennessee just couldn’t get anything going offensively Tuesday, losing at home for the first time all season. Dalton Knecht poured in another 31 points, but Rick Barnes got virtually nothing else from his veteran core. Zakai Zeigler ended the day with zero points on 0-6 shooting. Simply put, the defense was plenty good enough to win, but the offense was nowhere to be found.
The loss hurts Tennessee in the regular season standings, allowing South Carolina, Auburn, and Alabama to jump the Volunteers for the time being. Tennessee’s key game at Kentucky on Saturday will give those standings a little more clarity.
In the grand scheme of things though, the loss didn’t hurt too terribly bad. Tennessee remains on the 2-seed line of ESPN’s latest projection, which came out on Friday morning. The Vols moved over to UConn’s East Region, where they would be projected to pair up with No. 15 seed Quinnipiac. No. 10 Providence and No. 7 Northwestern would stand in the way of a trip to the Sweet 16.