I watched Tennessee for the first time last night against Marquette. Here is what I saw, and I do realize it is only one game:
Those are the main players I paid attention to. The loss of Lofton et. al. last year has definitely hurt this team more than the new additions have helped it. UT doesn't appear to have anywhere near the perimeter game they had last year, and their defense still seems to be very foul-prone and a step slow inside. I was very impressed by how Maze runs the team, he is definitely better than I expected, but Tennessee's offense spends way too much time standing around.
UT's denail of out-of-bounds plays is perhaps the best I have ever seen. There is no team quicker than Marquette, and they were challenged to get the ball in every time they got it out of bounds in the front court. That kind of scares me.
What encourages me is that outside of Chism, Tennessee has nobody who wants to rebound. Against the much smaller Marquette, you would think UT would have grabbed a ton of OR's but they had only 8, the same as Marquette. UT does a very poor job in help defense and grabs a lot on dribble drives to the hoop, sending Marquette players to the line in waves.
Overall, I was not as impressed by the Vols as I expected to be. The game was choppy due to a lot of foul calls, so I can't say that this looked like UT at their best. But from what I could tell, they do some things better and some things worse than UK does. It looks to me like the 'Cats and the Vols will be a very even matchup.