Game tips at 8 p.m. CT, will be televised by ESPN2.
Feb. 9, 2011
The #23/24 Vanderbilt Commodores welcome SEC-West leading Alabama to Memorial Gym on Thursday for a nationally televised game. The game will tip off at 8 p.m. CT, and can be heard on the Vanderbilt Sports Network from IMG College and vucommodores.com.
The game will be televised on ESPN2, with Rece Davis and Hubert Davis on the call.
Series Info: Alabama leads the all-time series, 65-63; Vanderbilt leads the all-time series, 39-18, in games played in Nashville. Last Meeting: Vanderbilt defeated Alabama, 65-64, on January 13, 2010. Head Coaches:Kevin Stallings is in his 12th year at Vanderbilt (229-143) and his 18th overall (352-206). Anthony Grant is in his second season at Alabama (32-22) and fifth year overall (106-47). Radio: Vanderbilt Sports Network from IMG College (WRQQ - 97.1 FM); vucommodores.com Play-by-Play: Joe Fisher (13th year); Color: Tim Thompson (10th year) TV: ESPN2 Play-by-Play: Rece Davis; Color: Hubert Davis
About Alabama Alabama enters the game with a 15-7 overall record and a 7-1 mark in league play. The Crimson Tide lead the West Division and have won five straight after defeating Tennessee in Knoxville in overtime, 65-60, on Saturday.
One of the league's best big men, JaMychal Green, paces Alabama in scoring at 15.6 points per game, and ties for the team-lead in rebounding with 7.5 per contest. Tony Mitchell is the Tide's other double-figure scorer at 15.3 ppg - Mitchell also averages 7.5 rebounds per game.
The Alabama Series Thursday's game will be the 129th game in the career series between the two schools, with Alabama owning a 65-63 advantage in the series.
In games played in Nashville, the Commodores own a 39-18 series advantage, and have won 10 straight at Memorial Gym. The Crimson Tide lead 43-19 in games played in Tuscaloosa, and Vanderbilt leads 5-4 in neutral site contests.
Stallings Versus Alabama Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings has a record of 8-6 all-time against Alabama, and has a record of 5-0 against the Crimson Tide at Memorial Gym.
Stallings In SEC Play In his 12th season of SEC play at the helm of the Commodores, Kevin Stallings has an 88-96 record in SEC play. In 2009-10, Stallings posted his best SEC record as a coach with a 12-4 mark.
Vanderbilt Vs. The SEC Vanderbilt has a 632-629 record against teams that currently comprise the SEC.
Goulbourne Wins SEC POTW, Joins Three Other Starters Who Have Won Award 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 against Ole Miss and St. Mary's. Goulbourne joins juniors Brad Tinsley and Festus Ezeli, and sophomore John Jenkins as SEC weekly award winners this season. The 6'8 forward from Brooklyn, N.Y. averaged 14.5 points and 13.0 rebounds in wins over Ole Miss and 22nd-ranked St. Mary's (Calif.).
Free Throws The Commodores lead the SEC in free throw attempts per game in all games (26.1), and in SEC games only (26.1).
On the road in six games thus far, Vanderbilt has made more free throws than their opponents have attempted. In the six games, VU is 104-153 (.680), while opponents are 70-104 (.673).
Commodores In Top 25 Vanderbilt is number 23 in the recent Associated Press poll and number 24 in the ESPN/USA Today poll. It is the fifth week Vanderbilt has been ranked this season in the AP poll, and the third week in the ESPN/USA Today rankings. This year marks the 20th season the Commodores have appeared in the Associated Press poll, and the fourth season in the last five.
Home Sweet Home In 13 home games this year, the Commodores are 12-1, average 82.8 points per game, and shoot 49.2% from the floor. Vanderbilt also makes 8.7 threes per game, shoots 42.5% from beyond-the-arc, and outrebounds opponents by a margin of +7.8. VU also shoots 77.2% from the charity stripe at Memorial Gym.
In true road games, Vanderbilt is 2-4 on the season and sees their percentages drop from the floor - 42.6% from the field and 31.2% from three. The Commodores get outrebounded by a margin of 3.7 on the road, and only convert 68.0% of their free throws.
Stay In The Game Fes! When center Festus Ezeli has fouled out, the team is 1-3, with a win over Ole Miss and losses at Florida, at South Carolina, and against West Virginia on a neutral floor.
When Jeffery Taylor Scores 15 Or More Points... The Commodores are 12-1, with their only loss coming at Missouri (Taylor had 18 points).
Individual Notes #44 Jeffery Taylor Taylor has scored in double-digits in 64 career games. Scored 17 points, had eight rebounds, three assists, and three blocks against South Carolina at Memorial Gym (2/5).
#23 John Jenkins Leads SEC in scoring in all games (19.2) and SEC games only (21.4), 3-point field goals made per game in all games (3.0/game) and is second in SEC games only (2.9); second in the SEC in free throw percentage (.904) in all games and first in SEC games only (.962). Scored 20 or more points in 12 games this season and 14 in his career; made at least 5 threes in four games. His free throw percentage this year (.904) would be the second highest single-season free throw percentage (min. 50 made free throws) in Vanderbilt history (1st - Rudy Thacker, 1970-71, 56-61, .918). His career percentage, .869 (152-175) would place him third all-time behind Billy McCaffery (1993-94, .880) and Rudy Thacker (1969-71, .879).
#1 Brad Tinsley Started every game this season and leads SEC in assists in all games (4.5); Has had five or more assists in 11 games this season and 20 in his career; dished out nine assists vs. South Carolina (2/5) and had eight assists against Marquette (12/29). His nine assists against the Gamecocks was an SEC-game high. Scored in double figures in 12 games this season, including a season-high 18-point game against St. Mary's; scored 13 points vs. South Caorlina, 15 points at Florida, and 14 points against Ole Miss.
#3 Festus Ezeli One of nation's most improved big men...averaged 3.8 points and 3.2 rebounds last year - this season, he's pushed his averages to 12.8 and 6.1, respectively. Second in the SEC in FG% at 58.5% (96-164). Scored 17 points and had 8 rebounds vs. South Carolina (2/6).
#5 Lance Goulbourne Started the last 10 games in place of the injured Andre Walker. Tied for third in the SEC in rebounding in SEC games only (8.6) and is sixth in all games (7.6). Played limited minutes against South Carolina (17) due to ankle injury. Had double-digit rebounds in five of 10 games started.
#45 Rod Odom Leads SEC in SEC Games only in 3-point FG percentage (.471). Scored nine points, all on threes, against South Carolina at Memorial Gym (2/5)...tied his career-high in threes made (3). Started against Florida in Gainesville, his fourth career start.
Vanderbilt-South Carolina Tidbits Vanderbilt snapped a two-game skid on Saturday and moved to 12-1 at home with a 78-60 win over South Carolina at Memorial Gym. John Jenkins led four players with double-figures with 18 points in the win - Jenkins has scored in double-figures in all 21 games he has played in this season. Vanderbilt wore their gold uniforms for the first time this season. The Commodores are 12-1 in their white uniforms and 3-5 while wearing black. The Commodores won the opening tip and are now 15-3 when doing so. John Jenkins made a three-point basket with 14:15 remaining in the first half to extend Vanderbilt's consecutive game streak with a three-pointer to 784. VU went 2-2 from the free throw line in the first half, tying a season-low for free throws attempted in a half. The Commodores went 1-2 in games against Presbyterian and Western Kentucky. It was the second time this season Vanderbilt went perfect from the line in the first half (15-15 vs. Arkansas). Leading 30-23 at the break, Saturday marked the first time that Vanderbilt was on top at halftime in SEC play since leading Tennessee 30-20 on January 15. The Commodores improve to 2-2 when doing so. The 11 three-pointers made were the most by Vanderbilt in SEC play this season. The Commodores' previous best was eight against Ole Miss and Mississippi State. Vanderbilt shot 55% (11-20) from beyond the arc, marking the highest three-point efficiency on the season for the Commodores. VU is now 5-0 when shooting 50% or better from beyond the arc. The Commodores shot 50.9% from the field, improving to 8-1 when shooting 50% or greater on total field goals. Vanderbilt outscored South Carolina 22-8 in points off of turnovers, 19-8 in second chance points, and 28-22 in paint points. Lead changes: 5 Ties: 4 Largest lead: Vanderbilt 22
Player Notes vs. South Carolina Rod Odom tied career highs with three three-pointers made and two assists. With 13 points, Brad Tinsley recorded his 12th double-digit scoring game of the season and 39th of his career. His nine assists are a career high in SEC games. His previous best was seven against Ole Miss on February 18, 2010. Jeffery Taylor's 17 points marked the 18th time he recorded double-digits in points this season and the team-leading 64th time of his career. His four three-pointers were also a career high. His previous best was three, against Presbyterian on November 12, 2010. John Jenkins went 4-5 from the free throw line, missing only his second shot from the charity stripe in SEC play. He is now 50-52 from the line in conference action. Jenkins also led the Commodores with 18 points, his team-leading 21st double digit scoring game of the season. Festus Ezeli finished with 17 points and eight rebounds. It was the 15th double digit scoring game for the center on the season. He went 7-13 from the floor, marking a career high in field goal attempts. His seven made field goals were the most against an SEC opponent in his career. Team Notes