Tennessee Vols Basketball: Swiperboy Takes The Net By Storm

Joel BarkerSenior Writer IJanuary 23, 2010

I'm sure just about every fan of Vol basketball knows who Swiperboy is. But just in case you do not, he also goes by his real name, Renaldo Woolridge.

Woolridge has spent the last couple of years rhyming and posting great musical beats on YouTube. But not even Swiperboy himself could have predicted the vast response to his latest effort.

Shortly after Lane Kiffin left the Vols football team, Woolridge along with fellow swiperboy Micah, recorded "Never Leave You Like Kiffin ."

In the six days since it was first posted, the song has received over 67,000 views! Not bad for a guy mixing his tunes on a laptop computer.

I became a twitter follower of @swiperboy on the night that Kiffin left Knoxville amidst campus riots. Woolridge kept every one of his followers up to date with what was happening on campus as it happened .

For all the success that Swiperboy has achieved on YouTube, however, his on-court presence for the Tennessee Vols of late has been even more appreciated.

Woolridge is a role player on this Tennessee team. He's averaging only five points and three rebounds per game. But his situation proves that stats aren't everything.

In the two biggest games of the season, versus Charlotte and Kansas (the two games immediately following the suspension of four key Vols), Woolridge had a combined 24 points. 14 of those points came against No. 1 Kansas when Woolridge went 4-of-6 from three-point land.

His eight rebounds proved to be critical in that upset win as well.

The thing about Woolridge that cannot be quantified in a stat category is his all-around attitude. The guy is completely team-first.

For all the recent talk about team chemistry, one needs to look no further than the sophomore from Los Angeles.

Perhaps the most remarkable thing about Woolridge is that, due to an injury and tremendous team depth, Swiperboy couldn't even crack the 10-deep rotation to begin the season.

Woolridge went from averaging seven-and-a-half minutes a game before the New Year's Day incident involving the four players, to 25 minutes per game since.

Talk about being thrown into the fire!

The sophomore has been counted on for minutes, rebounds, and clutch shots in the absence of Cameron Tatum, Melvin Goins, and Brian Williams.

Now that two of the three are back (the fourth, Tyler Smith, was kicked off the team), Swiperboy's minutes might creep back into the teens.

I, for one, do not want to see that happen.

Woolridge brings so much more to this team than stats and stellar play. He brings that sense of family that Bruce Pearl is always talking about to this team.

Woolridge is a major part of this team's newfound chemistry.

Despite the recent play of Kenny Hall, and the return of Cameron Tatum and Melvin Goins, Swiperboy deserves to continue being a major part of this team.

He has been a tremendous asset to the recent winning streak over ranked teams, and he adds to the team in more ways than a stat-line can document.

His fanbase continues to grow via Twitter, YouTube, and UStream, and his rap skills continue to impress.

If given the chance, I have no doubt that his basketball skills will impress as well.