Pearl, Tennessee face Michigan and distractions

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- While acknowledging comments from Tennessee's athletic director about his uncertain future "came as a bit of a surprise," Bruce Pearl insists he's not thinking about the possibility he has just one game left as Volunteers coach.

Wanting to talk about Michigan's motion offense and 1-3-1 zone defense a day before their second-round NCAA tournament matchup, Pearl instead was peppered with questions Thursday about his job status.

AD Mike Hamilton said in a radio interview Wednesday that the "jury is out" on Pearl and that he'd be evaluated at the end of the season. Pearl has admitted lying during an NCAA investigation.

Pearl says "up until recently" he was under the assumption he'd be able to defend himself in a June NCAA hearing while still Tennessee's coach.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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