(Photo by Steve Green)
VANDERBILT MEN'S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE/RESULTS
Wednesday, Jan. 19: Vanderbilt 84, Ole Miss 74
Saturday, Jan. 22: Vanderbilt 89, No. 21 St. Mary's 70
Thursday, Jan. 27: Vanderbilt at Mississippi State, 6 p.m. CT, TV: ESPN2
Saturday, Jan. 29: Arkansas at Vanderbilt, 5 p.m. CT, TV: FSN
COMMODORES RETURN TO RANKINGS
After going 2-0 last week including a 19-point rout of No. 21 Saint Mary's, Vanderbilt vaulted back into both major polls Monday.
The Commodores are 19th in the Associated Press Top 25 (their highest ranking in 2010-11) and 22nd in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.
It marks the third time Vanderbilt has been in the top 25 this season. The Dores were ranked for consecutive weeks by the AP on Dec. 27 and Jan. 3, but fell out of the polls on Jan. 10 after suffering an overtime loss at South Carolina.
GOULBOURNE NAMED SEC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
From Boggles' Press Release: Junior forward Lance Goulbourne claimed the Commodore's fourth SEC Player of the Week award this season and the first of his career after his two double-doubles last week against Ole Miss and St. Mary's. Read More
ESPN.com's Joe Lunardi listed Vanderbilt a No. 6 seed for the third week in a row.
SI.com's Andy Glockner dropped VU from a No. 5 seed to a No. 6 seed.
QUOTES FROM MONDAY'S SEC TELECONFERENCE WITH KEVIN STALLINGS
Listen to the teleconference on SECsports.com
Coach Stallings' opening statement...
"We're coming off a good week where we played pretty well in both games. We're kind of glad to have an extra day this week because we've been banged up a little bit physically, especially our big guys. We're hoping we can get healthier by the time we head to Starkville.
"I was pleased with our play last week and pleased with how we kind of gutted it out given the fact we were less than 100% physically. We enter this week in a reasonably good frame of mind. From a playing standpoint, we've had a personal tragedy. Chris Meriwether's mother passed away this morning. From a personal standpoint, we're all hurting right now."
On handling difficult situations on his call-in show...
"We do take live callers. I probably handle it about like every other coach does. You're going to get some suspect comments and questions at times. I think that it's good if people can remember that these guys are 18-22 year-old guys. They are on scholarship, but it's not like they're getting paid for a living to do this. I think that sometimes fans, and even coaches, remember that these kids are doing the best they can. I think it's frustrating sometimes when you care about the players, you care about their families, when you hear them criticized. They already get enough criticism from their coaches, generally speaking. It's probably that protective thing that we don't really like to hear anyone else criticize them because we know what they face on a day to day basis any way.
"I usually do better (with questions) after a win than a loss. You just deal with it the best you can ... I don't make it a habit of getting confrontational with callers. People are entitled to their opinion. I do think there's a time and a place that it's okay for the coach to remind people that if things are getting too negative, that these young men are still real young, and they're doing the best that they can.
" ... My call-in shows are awesome. Our people are terrific here. Even when things were bad, our callers are very good. I don't have many problems that way."
On Mississippi State...
"They have had games where they looked absolutely awesome. I know Saturday wasn't one of those games. They've looked awesome at times since they've had this group together. I said at Media Day back in October that I thought they would have the chance to win the league. That's what I thought of them, and I haven't come off it. I think they're very, very talented. Obviously, they're getting a later start on the opportunity to gel than most of the other teams in the league, but they have very, very talented players and guys that have been around there for awhile. They've got experience, they've got talent, so I don't know what else you can ask for. But like I said, they have gotten a later start on this group being a team, so that's the only thing probably keeping them from being a top 20 team.
"You have to prepare for who they are: a very talented and experienced team. The preparation isn't any different. I think it's just when they've had enough time together, it all starts clicking. They're obviously a team as the deeper this season goes, the more that people will have to reckon with them."
MORE COLLEGE BASKETBALL NEWS
ESPN.com: Weekly Watch Week 9
More performances that wowed us...ESPN.com: Andy Katz's Observations from the week
"Lance Goulbourne, Vanderbilt: Entering last week, the junior forward had zero double-doubles in his Vandy career. He now has two. In double-digit victories over Ole Miss and Saint Mary's, Goulbourne threw up a 14 and 16 against the Rebels and a 15 and 10 against the Gaels."
SI.com: Seth Davis' Hoops Thoughts
SI.com: Andy Glockner's Bubble Watch
SHOULD BE INCBSsports.com: Gary Parrish's Monday Look Back
Vanderbilt (14-4, 2-2; RPI: 18, SOS: 24)
"The 'Dores picked up a sneaky quality nonleague win, rolling past Saint Mary's after beating Ole Miss earlier in the week. That the Gaels may be Vandy's best win of the season leaves some reason for pause. They need to handle things at Miss. State and home to Arkansas this week before a trip to Gainesville."
GW: North Carolina (N), Saint Mary's
FoxSports.com: Jeff Goodman's Weekly Recap
South Carolina 3-2
Mississippi State 2-2
Ole Miss 1-4