The Commodores open their 66th SEC season at Memorial Gym on Tuesday evening when they take on Alabama. The game begins at 6 p.m. CT, with the game airing live on the SEC Network, on the radio with Joe Fisher and Tim Thompson on the Vanderbilt IMG Radio Network, and online on vucommodores.com.
Vanderbilt dropped its SEC opener Saturday afternoon, 81-74, at Florida in Exactech Arena. Senior Jeff Roberson led five Commodore players in double figures with 18 points. Senior Matthew Fisher-Davis added 17 points, freshman guard Saben Lee 13 points, senior Riley LaChance 11 points, and sophomore Payton Willis 10 points for Vanderbilt.
Vanderbilt (5-8, 0-1) vs. Alabama (9-4, 1-0)
Nashville, Tenn. - Memorial Gym - 6 p.m. CT
TV: SEC Network
TV Talent: Dave Neal (pxp), Daymeon Fishback (analyst)
Radio: Vanderbilt Radio Network from IMG College, vucommodores.com
Radio Talent: Joe Fisher (pxp), Tim Thompson (analyst)
Satellite Radio: Sirius 145, XM 380
Live Stats: vucommodores.com
Twitter Updates: @VandyMBB
Series Record: Series tied at 68.
Last Meeting: Alabama win, 59-56, on 1/7/17
Record at Vanderbilt: VU leads 42-19.
Record at Alabama: UA leads 45-21.
Record at Neutral Site: VU leads, 5-4.
Coach Drew vs. Alabama: Coach Drew is 0-1 against Alabama.
Most Ranked Opponents in Non-Conference Play since 1988
The Commodores have already played four ranked opponents this season in USC (#10/#10), Virginia (RV/#25), Seton Hall (#20/#20), and Arizona State (#5/#6). The four ranked non-conference opponents is the most by a Commodore team since 1988, when Vanderbilt also played four (11/22 - # 2 Michigan, L, 66-91; 11/27 - #16 Ohio State, L, 82-97; 11/30 - #13 Louisville, W, 65-62; 12/7 - #8 North Carolina, L, 77-89).
More on Alabama
- Alabama enters the game with a 9-4 record and a 1-0 mark in SEC play after a convincing 79-57 win in their league opener against number-five ranked Texas A&M.
- Freshman Collin Sexton is the Crimson Tide's leading scorer, averaging 20.1 points per game. John Petty (13.3), Donta Hall (11.5), and Dazon Ingram (11.3) also average double figures.
- Vanderbilt and Alabama will only meet once this season. The Commodores have a 42-19 overall advantage in games played at Vanderbilt, including the last meeting on January 16, 2016 at Memorial Gym (71-63).
- Crimson Tide forward Braxton Key played most of his high school career at Christ Presbyterian Academy in Nashville.
A Commodore Win Would...
- Move Vanderbilt's record in the SEC to 1-1.
- Give Vanderbilt a 6-3 mark at Memorial Gym this season.
- Give the Commodores the advantage in the overall series between the two teams, which currently stands at 68 wins apiece.
Jeff Roberson: Mr Double-Double
Jeff Roberson has six double doubles on the season, the most in a season by a Commodore since Damian Jones had seven in the 2015-16 season. Seven is also the most by a Commodore since Will Perdue had 10 in his junior season (1986-87) and 16 in his senior season (1987-88).
Roberson is the team's leading scorer and rebounder, averaging 14.7 points and 8.2 rebounds per game. Roberson is tied for the SEC lead in double doubles with six with Georgia's Yante Maten, and is third in the SEC in rebounding, third in free throw percentage, and first in defensive rebounding.
Vanderbilt Quick Hitters
- This will be the 66th SEC opener in Memorial Gym for the Commodores.
- Roberson eclipsed the 1,000-point barrier in his career with his 21-point game against Alcorn State. He joins two other 1,000-point scorers on this year's roster - Riley LaChance and Matthew Fisher-Davis. There has been only one other class of Vanderbilt players to have three 1,000-point scorers - the vaunted "F Troop" - Butch Feher, Joe Ford, and Jeff Fosnes in 1976.
- LaChance and Fisher-Davis each have 1,177 points, are tied for 34th on Vanderbilt's all-time scoring list and are tied for second among current players in SEC in scoring. Georgia's Yante Maten is the conference's current career leader.
- Jeff Roberson is the team's leading scorer and rebounder, averaging 14.7 points and 8.2 rebounds per game. Roberson is tied for the SEC lead in double doubles with six with Georgia's Yante Maten, and is third in the SEC in rebounding, third in free throw percentage, and first in defensive rebounding. Matthew Fisher Davis adds 12.4 points per game and Riley LaChance pitches in 11.6 points per game.
- LaChance, who has 353 career assists, is now 10th on Vanderbilt's all-time assist list after surpassing Al McKinney against Florida. McKinney played from 1981-84 and finished his career with 351 career assists. Russell Lakey is ninth on the list with 369 assists.
- Roberson began the season with three straight double-doubles, the first time a Commodore has had three straight double-doubles since Dan Langhi in 1998.
- Vanderbilt is 41-97 from three in their last three games, a 42.3% clip, and dished out 57 assists.
- Fisher-Davis' scored 31 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in Vanderbilt's game at Memorial Gym against USC - his 30-10 game was Vanderbilt's first since A.J. Ogilvy in 2009 (33 and 10, at LSU, 3/4/09).
- Freshman Saben Lee, from Phoenix, Ariz., who has started nine games at point guard for the Commodores, scored a career-high 24 points in a homecoming game at Arizona State on December 17.
- The Commodores have already played four ranked opponents this season in USC (#10/#10), Virginia (RV/#25), Seton Hall (#20/#20), and Arizona State (#5/#6). The four ranked non-conference opponents is the most by a Commodore team since 1988, when Vanderbilt also played four (11/22 - # 2 Michigan, L, 66-91; 11/27 - #16 Ohio State, L, 82-97; 11/30 - #13 Louisville, W, 65-62; 12/7 - #8 North Carolina, L, 77-89).
- This season's non-conference schedule features eight games against teams who played in the postseason a year ago. Five opponents, USC, Seton Hall, Virginia, Kansas State, and Middle Tennessee, all played in the 2017 NCAA Tournament, with NIT participant Belmont, 2017 NIT Champion TCU, and CollegeInsider.com Tournament team UNC Asheville also on the challenging slate.
- Commodore head coach Bryce Drew, now in his second season, led the Commodores to the NCAA Tournament in his first season in Nashville, marking the first time in the history of the program a first-year Vanderbilt coach led his team to the tournament. Overall, the Commodores made their 15th appearance in the NCAA Tournament and their first back-to-back appearances since making three consecutive tournaments from 2010-12.
- In the early signing period, the Commodores signed a consensus top 10 recruiting class for next season - the Commodores received commitments from two five-star players, point guard Darius Garland (Brentwood, Tenn.) and forward Simi Shittu (Burlington, Ontario, Canada.), and four-star wing player Aaron Nesmith (Charleston, S.C.), one of the nation's top shooters.
SEC Strength of Schedule
Entering league play, here's a look at KenPom's strength of schedule among league teams (12/31).
1. Tennessee , 7
2. Alabama, 23
3. Vanderbilt, 35
4. Texas A&M, 48
5. Arkansas, 51
6. Florida, 84
7. Kentucky, 86
8. S. Carolina, 144
9. Missouri, 151
10. Georgia, 182
11. Auburn, 230
12. Ole Miss, 234
13. LSU, 293
14. Miss. St., 347
700th SEC Win
Vanderbilt is in its 85th SEC season and is a charter member of the league. All time against current members of the conference, Vanderbilt is 709-694.
Vanderbilt has made a 3-pointer in 1,012 consecutive games, a streak which began at the inception of the 3-point line in 1986-87. The Commodores rank third only to UNLV and Kentucky for the longest streak in Division I basketball. Vanderbilt, UNLV and Princeton are the only three schools in college basketball to have made at least one 3-pointer in every game played since the 3-point line was implemented.