Sad news: Am leaving Cade Phillips Announce his resignation and departure from the team after…

Tennessee’s 17th-ranked basketball team has 11 players averaging more than five minutes per game entering Saturday’s noon showdown against No. 20 Illinois in the Food City Center.

One reason for such a high number is that the future is taking place sooner than expected for Volunteers freshman forward Cade Phillips.

The son of former Alabama quarterback John David Phillips and the nephew of another former Crimson Tide quarterback, Brodie Croyle, has appeared in six of eight games through Tennessee’s 5-3 start, averaging 6.7 minutes per appearance. While playing time can often be a spreading of wealth during nonconference mismatches, Phillips has averaged eight minutes the past two outings against North Carolina and George Mason.

“I can’t say enough about Cade,” Tennessee coach Rick Barnes said after the 100-92 loss to the Tar Heels in Chapel Hill on Nov.

John David Phillips had his speech ready.


He parked his big, white Chevrolet truck outside Westbrook Christian School and rehearsed the conversation for the final times.


Cade Phillips walked out and saw his father waiting in the loud truck he adored. The fifth-grader marched over and climbed in. It was time for a talk — man-to-man, head of the house to olde

John David and his wife, Reagan Croyle Phillips, had decided to open their home to four senior girls and that was only the first change coming. John David wanted to run it by Phillips, who would have to accept a new role with seven kids in the house and four teenage girls ruling the roost.


Phillips didn’t let his dad finish the well-prepared spiel.