List of all-time Tennessee men’s basketball players: Volunteer Legends

The University of Tennessee’s men’s basketball team debuted during the 1908-09 season.

Throughout its history the Vol has won championships with many legends playing for Tennessee.

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Several Tennessee legends have retired jersey numbers: Chris Lofton (No. 5), Dale Ellis (No. 14), Allan Houston (No. 20), Ernie Grunfeld (No. 22) and Bernard King (No. 53).

In NCAA Tournament play, the Vols have advanced to the Elite Eight once in 2010 under head coach Bruce Pearl. Tennessee has advanced to the Sweet 16 in 1967, 1981, 2000, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2014 and 2019.

The Vols have appeared in the NCAA Tournament in the following seasons: 1967, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1989, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2010, 2010, 2010, 2010, 2010, 2010 2010, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 20110, 2010 , 2014, 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022.

Tennessee has experienced success in SEC Tournament play over the years, winning five championships (1936, 1941, 1943, 1979, 2022).

The Vols have won the league regular season title in 1936, 1941, 1943, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982, 2000, 2008 and 2018.

Ahead of the 2023 NCAA Tournament, Vols Wire takes a look at Tennessee’s all-time basketball coach and student athlete. Tennessee’s all-time men’s basketball team is listed below.

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Pearl coached the Vols from 2005-11, compiling a 145-61 record.

He guided the Vols to six NCAA Tournament appearances, progressing to one Elite Eight appearance and two Sweet 16 appearances.

Aberdeen was an assistant coach under head coach Ray Mears from 1966-77.

He recruited Naismith Hall of Famers Bernard King and Ernie Grunfeld.

After serving 11 years under Mears, Aberdeen became head coach at Marshall. He coached the Thundering Herd for two seasons, compiling a 25-31 record.

He died at the age of 43 of a heart attack in 1979.

AP/Henny Ray Abrams Photo, Files

Jones served as the Pearl’s associate head coach from 2005-11.

Pearl and Jones guided the Vols to six NCAA Tournament appearances, including two appearances at the Sweet 16. He was also a member of Pearl’s staff who helped Tennessee advance to the Elite 8 in 2010.

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Lofton played for the Vols from 2004-08 under head coaches Buzz Peterson and Bruce Pearl.

The Maysville, Kentucky native was a two-time consensus All-America standout in 2007-08.

Lofton is a three-time First Team All-SEC selection (2006-08) and was the AP SEC Player of the Year in 2008.

Kentucky Mr. Basketball in 2004 was a member of the SEC All-Freshmen Team.

Tennessee is retiring the No. 1 jersey. 5 Loftons.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Houston came to Tennessee in 1989 from Louisville, Kentucky.

Ballard High School graduates are Parade All-Americans, McDonald’s All-Americans and Kentucky Mr. Basketball.

In Tennessee, he played for his father, head coach Wade Houston.

jersey no. 20 Houston was retired by Tennessee where he was SEC Tournament MVP in 1991.

He was a member of the 1990 SEC All-Freshmen Team and was a three-time conference standout (1991-93).

Malcolm Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

A native of Brooklyn, New York, King came to Tennessee in 1974 after being recruited by Aberdeen.

King was a three-time SEC Player of the Year (1975-77) and a consensus All-American in 1976 and 1977.

He recorded 1,962 points and 1,004 rebounds during his three-year career at Tennessee.

King had 22 career double-doubles, averaging 25.8 points and 13.2 rebounds per game. He scored 30 plus points in 26 career games.

King led the Vols to a 1977 SEC regular marine championship and the No. 1 jersey.

Grunfeld arrived in Tennessee one year before King.

He played for Mears and was recruited by Aberdeen.

Grunfeld was part of Tennessee’s 1977 regular season SEC championship team. He shared SEC Player of the Year honors with King and earned All-America status during his career.

jersey no. 22 Grunfield was retired by Tennessee.

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Williams was a three-time standout in all of the SEC.

He was voted SEC Player of the Year by the conference coaches in 2018-19. Williams was the AP SEC Player of the Year as a junior in 2019 before leaving Tennessee for the NBA, where he was the No. 1 overall pick.

He appeared in 104 career games at Tennessee and recorded a . 516 field goal percentage.

Malcolm Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Hailing from Charlotte, North Carolina, White was the UPI SEC Player of the Year in 1987 and was voted a prominent third-team All-America by the AP and UPI in 1987.

White played for head coach Don DeVoe. He recorded 2,219 points and holds the school’s single-game scoring record with 51 points.

He appeared in 127 games for Tennessee and averaged 17 points per game.

Darden played for head coaches Ray Mears and Don DeVoe from 1975-79. He won the 1977 SEC regular season championship and the 1979 SEC Tournament title.

He ended his career having the school record for assists (715). Darden led the Vols in assists during each of his four seasons at Tennessee.

He was a third team All-SEC selection in 1977 and 1978.

Malcolm Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Ellis is a two-time SEC Player of the Year. He was a two-time consensus All-America, earning second team honors in 1983 and third team honors in 1982.

His back number is No. 14 have been retired by Tennessee.

He was a first-round pick in the 1984 NBA draft by Dallas (No. 9 overall).

Ellis retired in 2000 and had the most 3-point attempts until surpassed by Reggie Miller.

Tormohlen was a three-year starter and set Tennessee’s career rebounding record (1,113).

He was twice named All-SEC and named to Converse’s All-American team. He is known as the Chairman of the Board.

Tormohlen was selected by the Syracuse Nationals with the fifth pick in the second round of the 1959 NBA draft.

Frank Empson / Tennessean

Johnson was a two time First-Team All-America selection and a three-time All-SEC standout. He helped the Vols win two SEC championships.

He led the SEC in field goal percentage (. 645) as a freshman.

Johnson scored 2,103 career points during his college career.

He is in the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame.

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