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Tigers ready to show what they’re made of with No. 1 recruiting class

Published: Nov. 9, 2021 at 9:30 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The theme of this year is ‘Tunnel Vision’ as the Tigers look to prove a lot with Penny Hardaway’s second number-one recruiting class

This is the most complete team Hardaway feels like he’s had entering the season and he feels like this is the best situation he and his teams have been in since he’s been head coach at Memphis.

The first year, he inherited Tubby Smith’s team. Second-year James Wiseman couldn’t play and left, and they dealt with a bunch of injuries. Last year, they dealt with COVID and no preseason.

DeAndre Williams wasn’t eligible for the first handful of games, and Hardaway says the chemistry was off. So, he doesn’t feel like they’ve gotten a good shot at a good start. This year is different. Hardaway knows the team hasn’t proved anything to go along with their accolades.

Memphis starts the season ranked 12th in the AP preseason poll, 16th in the Coaches poll, now they need to back it up.

”I feel like we have great confidence but the way they look at us, any team in our conference loses one game, they drop seven to eight spots. Houston’s been able to sustain because they respect their culture. But for us, we know if we lose one game, they’re going to drop us by a longshot,” said Hardaway.

Memphis is picked to finish second in the American. Houston is coming off a final four run and is picked to finish first.

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