July 18, 2011 in Audio by Josh Ward

Memphis basketball coach Josh Pastner joined the show on Monday afternoon.

Pastner, who led Memphis to the NCAA tournament last season, has previously stated he would like to see the Memphis-Tennessee series end. Pastner was open in giving his reasoning on Monday.

“I don’t think it does us any good,” he said. “I’m just being honest with you. For us, it’s a game that I don’t know why we play it, but we play it because the athletic director wants me to play it and he’s my boss and what he says goes. My thing is, we don’t recruit in Knoxville. So for us, it gives an opportunity for Tennessee to come to Memphis twice every four years and they recruit in Memphis.

“It’s giving them an opportunity to recruit in Memphis and to play in Memphis. And really is it that big of a deal? Are you going to get a recruit because of it? No, it’s really not because of that. The point being is that I don’t think it does anything positive in a sense for Memphis basketball. That’s just the facts and I’m just speaking the honest truth.”

Pastner spoke more about why he would prefer to see the Tennessee series end. You can hear those reasons below. He was also quick to compliment Tennessee’s first-year basketball coach Cuonzo Martin.

“I think he’s first class,” Pastner said of Martin. “He’s going to do such a great job there at Tennessee. He’s got a great staff. There’s no question in my mind that that program’s going to remain at a very high level as Coach (Bruce) Pearl had it with Coach Martin. There’s no doubt about that. So all the fans there in Knoxville know that you’ve got yourself a winner and there’s not going to be any slippage and the program is going to stay at a very high level.”

Listen to the rest of Pastner’s interview below. The discussion about the Memphis-Tennessee series begins at the 10:15 mark of the interview.

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