Vols showing uncharacteristic struggles on defense

Tennessee basketball adds another graduate transfer (Image 1)
Tennessee basketball adds another graduate transfer (Image 1)

By STEVE MEGARGEE
AP Sports Writer

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee has prided itself on hard-nosed defense ever since Cuonzo Martin took over the program last year, but that characteristic has been missing during the Volunteers' 2-game losing streak.

After not allowing any of their first 11 opponents to score as many as 70 points, the Vols have given up a total of 177 points in their last two games. They lost 85-80 to Memphis on Jan. 4 and fell 92-74 to Mississippi in their Southeastern Conference opener Wednesday.

The Vols (8-5, 0-1 SEC) will try to recapture their usual form on defense Saturday at Alabama (8-6, 0-1) when they play their first road game in over a month. Alabama has lost 6 of its last eight games and hasn't reached 70 points in any of its last six contests.

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