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Who needs Tyler?

Who needs Tyler?

Tyler Smith was averaging just 11.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game when he was dismissed Jan. 8 from the Tennessee basketball team. So, when the Vols beat top-ranked Kansas two days later without him, some giddy fans quipped, "Who needs Tyler Smith?"

The answer: Tennessee does. While the Vols have not imploded since Smith's dismissal - as many observers expected - the team clearly misses his experience and versatility. For instance, the 6-7 power forward paced Tennessee in assists as a junior in 2008-09 and was leading in 2009-10 at the time of his dismissal. The Vols miss that dimension because point guards Bobby Maze and Melvin Goins are...

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Tennessee basketball coach Bruce Pearl announced the dismissal of senior guard/forward Tyler Smith…

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