Cuonzo Martin: I've talked with Pearl

By: Wes Boling Email
By: Wes Boling Email

KNOXVILLE (WVLT) -- New Tennessee basketball coach Cuonzo Martin is friends with the icon he's replacing in Knoxville.

Martin says he and former Vols coach Bruce Pearl have talked, but very little of their discussion revolved around UT hoops.

"It's probably about ten or 20 percent about Tennessee," Martin said Tuesday.. "It wasn't necessarily about Tennessee basketball."

Martin said Pearl offered to help him in any way possible.

The former Missouri State head man spoke fondly of Pearl, whom he says he's known for almost 20 years.

"Coach Pearl was successful," Martin said. "You have to give credit where it's due. [His departure] is unfortunate, but I think you have to move on. I have to do a job here now."

Martin and the Vols are currently going through individual workouts. The coaches are permitted to instruct three players at a time. Every Tennessee player is participating except for junior guard Scotty Hopson, who is working out with private trainers as he prepares to be evaluated by NBA teams.

Hopson and freshman forward Tobias Harris have both entered their names into the NBA Draft, but neither has hired an agent. Both players have until May 8 to decide whether to remain in the draft or return to school.

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