The Pilot Rocky Top Basketball League in Knoxville–an NCAA approved summer league for athletes in East Tennessee–ended competition last week, and so did the chance for University of Tennessee fans to see the beginnings of the 08-09 Vol hoops squad. Newcomers Scotty Hopson and Bobby Maze impressed, while big fella and our very own Smoothron’s (nonbiological) basketball brother, Brian Williams, showcased a much improved inside game.
The big winner, if not the summer basketball fans, was UT legend Dane Bradshaw, who among other things, took home the–you guessed it–Dane Bradshaw Award for biggest fan-favorite. Here’s a rundown of the other awards doled out.
More Volunteer homerism after the jump (Volunteer as in fans of Tennessee, not as in free/gratis… which I guess is also true, being that this is a non-pay blog… you’re welcome.)
The Knoxville News Sentinel had this to say about the newcomers.
— Maze (point guard): Strong, competitive and controlled, the Vols’ point guard position is in good hands. Impressive driving ability and shot selection.
— Hopson (shooting guard): He’ll be virtually unstoppable on offense when his 3-point shot falls, but his defensive skills need work.
— Daniel West (point guard): Tenacious defender, plays under control and has great court awareness. West is a winner.
— Phillip Jurick (post): A great shot blocker and strong in spurts, but needs work on his conditioning and offensive game.
So, Dane, what’s your assessment of the PRTL this year?
“The league was definitely deeper, and I was impressed with the talent here locally,” Bradshaw said. “This year was more exciting with the number of incoming (UT) freshman that played.
“Since I’ve been standing here 60 or 70 people tried to get in but can’t because of the fire code, or whatever. It’s a testament to the fan support basketball is getting in Knoxville.”
Now if they can only hit those damned free throws. [I’m talking to you Bobby (66%) and Scotty (65%)]