Tennessee and Tennessee-related items

The UT Sentinel reports today that Briana Bass will start for the Vols tomorrow against Middle Tennessee State. She’ll replace Cait McMahan, who’s having “issues with her surgically-repaired knee.” (http://www.govolsxtra.com/news/2008/dec/10/bass-to-start-for-ailing-mcmahan/)

I had a feeling this would happen. I wish McMahan a speedy recovery – hopefully it’s just a flare-up. And I hope Bass brings the tremendous energy and good dishes/ball movement that we’ve seen from her so far.

This will be the Vols’ first game in a week.

In ex-Vol news, Shannon Bobbitt is at last playing for a Turkish team, as had been long-rumored. She is on the Botasspor Adana team with two other Americans, a German and a bunch of Turks. Here’s the page:

http://www.eurobasket.com/team.asp?Cntry=TUR&Team=7719&Women=1

Sparks season ticket holders today received a copy of the Sparks monthly newsletter via email, which included a short interview with Bobbitt. Since it isn’t posted on their site, I’m not sure if I’m supposed to copy it, even with attribution. But I will mention the two things she said that cracked me up: 1. On the topic of her recent birthday, she commented “I’m getting up there!” I hope to god she’s being sarcastic. Few things are more annoying than a young person saying they feel old. 2. She was asked what her first experience overseas was like and her first sentence was, “I try to look at everything as a learning experience.” Read between the lines if you will, because Turkey ain’t New York City.

I’m proud of Bobbitt, as she’s so far been averaging 16 points, 4 assists and 3 steals per game. I recall fellow ex-Vol Sidney Spencer was also averaging 16 points per game for her overseas team as well. It’s good to have both kinds of training – playing in a difficult league like the WNBA, with the best players in the world, and a league more akin to the American college experience. You train for field events like the shotput the same way: use the 20-pound shot for strength training and the 8-pound shot for speed.

But the best news to me? Bobbitt’s been shooting 67 percent.

Booyah.

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