Tennessee basketball could have a couple of first-round draft picks on its roster after ESPN released its 2021 NBA mock draft.
Tennessee basketball struggled to find consistency throughout the 2019-20 season. This was expected after most of Tennessee’s production left for the NBA. The 2020-21 season is expected to be much better for the Vols, though.
We’ve already seen projections with Tennessee in the middle of top-25 projections and right with Kentucky when it comes to winning the SEC.
High hopes are continuing to rise as ESPN has released its first mock draft for the 2021 NBA Draft with a couple of Vols going in the first round.
ESPN’s Jonathan Givony made the mock draft, and he has incoming freshman Keon Johnson being drafted at No. 13 and Jaden Springer being drafted at No. 28. Johnson and Springer are the only Vols projected to be drafted in the first round, but not in the entire draft.
Josiah-Jordan James was also projected to get drafted at No. 52. That would give Tennessee three draftees in the NBA Draft for the second time in three years.
"“NBA scouts were significantly more excited about next year’s draft than this June’s class even before the coronavirus pandemic brought enough uncertainty to cause several prospects to decline entering their names in the 2020 draft,” Givony wrote. “Headlined by two potential franchise players in Cade Cunningham and Jalen Green, who both would have likely been top picks in this year’s draft, the 2021 draft has considerable star power.“It also has more depth than usual, as several players who would have been candidates to hear their names called on draft night this year decided to withdraw due to the uncertainty around what the pre-draft process will look like.”"
One thing that Tennessee will definitely have to improve on this fall if they want to see some players have their name called in the draft is three-point shooting. Tennessee continuously shot itself in the foot throughout this past season, and they can’t afford to do that again this year if they want to have any kind of success.
If Tennessee has as good of a season as the experts are predicting, then I wouldn’t be surprised at all if three Vols were drafted next spring.