1. Who takes over at the four?
All signs point to Rickea Jackson, who was preseason All-SEC, but it that a guarantee? She hasn’t played since January after all, and thanks to how Kellie Harper has restocked the roster, the Tennessee Lady Vols have plenty of options now, including other promising talent and veterans.
Jasmine Franklin has experience playing for Harper. She could do it. Marta Suárez returning from a season-ending played down there a good bit two seasons ago. Justine Pissott clearly has the size to do it. Could either of them be better? It’s possible and leads to our next post.
2. How often will Marta Suárez and Justine Pissott play in the post?
Again, Suárez and Pissott are more like wing players. However, with Harper, the wing requires elite shooting to stretch the floor given how she likes to dominate down low, and neither does that well. That’s what Rae Burrell brought to the table when fully healthy.
Tess Darby and Sara Puckett are likely to bring that to the table and occupy the spot this year, but that doesn’t mean Suárez and Pissott won’t move over there. As a result, how big Harper decides to play remains a question, which leads to uncertainty of where these two play the most.
3. Who will back up Tamari Key at center?
Last year, when Keyen Green got hurt, the Tennessee Lady Vols took a big hit from Tamari Key just not having a lot of help to back her up. Alexus Dye was great in her role but couldn’t replace what Key did. This year, though, Harper has two options to replace Key, maybe three.
Karoline Striplin is the logical choice when it comes to returning players with experience. Jillian Hollingshead is the rising star. However, Franklin could come into play here as well because of her defense and rebounding. Pay attention to how this ends up.