Barnes excited for Pons making his way back to Knoxville

Sports

The reigning defensive player of the year announced his decision on Monday

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) – Aside from students and fans, Tennessee men’s basketball coach Rick Barnes is pretty excited a day after reigning SEC Defensive Player of the Year Yves Pons announced he was returning to Knoxville.

The Volunteers coach of five years brings back a piece of the squad that started all 31 games, while averaging 10.8 points and 5.4 rebounds. The France native is impressive on offense, but Barnes knows how crucial Pons is on the defensive end.

“Yves to me is a guy not only can he guard people from every position, but the fact he can do that, but still go help his teammate in so many different levels is what makes him so impressive on the defensive end,” Barnes said.

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