Kellie Harper has gotten the Lady Vols off to a hot start in her first season as the head coach, and the team looks very good early in the year.
The Lady Vols have been down for the past few years, so a coaching change was needed, and a coaching change was made.
Tennessee chose to hire Kellie Harper from the pool of people available. Harper played under Pat Summitt, so she learned from the best and understands what this program means to the fans, the school, and women’s basketball fans across the country.
So far, it looks like it was a good hire. The Lady Vols are 7-0 to start the season after their win over Air Force on Sunday. A statement win over 15 ranked Notre Dame is also a good win to add to the small resume.
The schedule won’t get much easier before SEC play either. The next three games for the Lady Vols are Texas, Colorado State, and No. 3 Stanford. Texas and Colorado State are pretty good teams, but very beatable.
If Harper and the Vols can find a way to beat Stanford, then I think it’s fair to say she might be the real deal. She has done a pretty good job with the program so far. She’s instilling a different culture, and so far it is working.
The season got off to a slow start for the Lady Vols. They were able to secure the wins, but it wasn’t easy. It has gotten better, though. Since the Notre Dame win, the Lady Vols have a margin of victory of 125 points in the last four games.
You could argue that it is expected for the Lady Vols to dominate the beginning of the season like this, but that hasn’t been the case in recent years.
The Lady Vols have started the season undefeated like this, but the margin of victory hasn’t been there. Last year, Tennessee’s first loss last year was to Stanford, and that was a ten-point loss, so Stanford will be a good test to see if this team has improved from last year.
Tennessee and Kentucky currently stand as the only remaining SEC teams in the conference, so I would say Harper is improving the team.
I guess we will have to wait and see how much the team is improving against Stanford, but I think if they can outrebound Stanford, then they might be able to find a way to win the game.
We could be seeing the rise of the Lady Vols after they have been falling downhill. I hope that’s the case because a good men’s and women’s basketball team could have TBA packed out a lot this winter and spring and offer a great environment for the players.