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Hoopster Harris Says He Might Return To UT

Sophomore-to-be Tobias Harris says he might bypass the NBA draft and return to Tennessee next season.  That’s not a shock by any stretch as Harris’ draft stock has shifted back and forth from top 20 pick to early second round pick and back.  A probable lockout in the NBA — which faces a tougher labor battle than the NFL — will likely play a role in his thinking as well.

But according to The Knoxville News Sentinel, it also sounds as though Harris is connecting with new UT coach Cuonzo Martin and his staff.

“I think the coaching staff is really a great group of guys; they are pretty much amazing,” Harris said yesterday.  “I think people need to give them more respect.  Coach Martin, he’s tough, and a lot of people don’t know that.  He’s pushing me, not only in these workouts, but as a person, also.”

Harris plans to enter the draft and test the waters without signing with an agent.  Teammate Scotty Hopson plans on doing the same.  But Hopson is not on UT’s campus — though Martin says he’s somehow keeping up with his studies — and it’s believed he’ll likely leave for professional ball in Europe if the NBA doesn’t come calling.

As for Harris’ decision to go through workouts at Tennessee: “I’m just here because there’s a chance I could come back.  I’m just going to work out with the team and do everything with the team because the workouts we’re doing are pretty much like pro workouts.”

Harris made the SEC’s All-Freshman team and was a second-team All-SEC player overall last season.


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