Vanderbilt, the defending champion at the SEC Tournament, begins the defense of their 2012 crown with a second-round meeting with Arkansas Thursday night at Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville. The game will tip at 6:30 p.m. CT and will be televised regionally on the SEC Network, with the game also being heard on the Vanderbilt IMG College Radio Network in middle Tennessee and online at vucommodores.com.
Game 31/#10 VANDERBILT (14-16, 8-10) vs. #7 ARKANSAS (19-12, 10-8) 2013 SEC Tournament Nashville, Tenn. - Bridgestone Arena - 6:30 p.m. CT Radio: Vanderbilt Radio Network from IMG College, vucommodores.com Radio Talent: Joe Fisher (pxp), Tim Thompson (analyst) Satellite Radio: Sirius 126, XM 199 TV: SEC Network SEC Network Affiliates TV Talent: Dave Neal (pxp), Jon Sunvold (analyst), Shannon Spake (sidelines) Live Stats: vucommodores.com Twitter Updates: @VandyMBB
Series Information Series Record: Arkansas leads the all-time series, 18-10. Last Meeting: VU defeated Arkansas, 67-49, on 2/9/13, at Memorial Gym. Record at Vanderbilt: VU leads 8-5. Record at Ark.: Arkansas leads 10-2. Record at Neutral Site: Arkansas leads 3-0. Coach Stallings vs. Arkansas: Coach Stallings is 5-12 against Arkansas.
About Arkansas and the Series
Arkansas leads the all-time series 18-10, including a 10-2 advantage in Fayetteville and a 3-0 lead at neutral sites, all in the SEC Tournament. Vanderbilt leads the series in Nashville, 8-5... The two teams split two meetings this year, with each team winning on their home floor (1/12, at Arkansas, Arkansas won 56-33; 2/9, at Vanderbilt, Vanderbilt won 67-49)...The Razorbacks defeated Vanderbilt in the 2008 SEC Quarterfinals, 81-65 in their last tournament meeting.
This will be the third meeting between the two schools. Thursday's meeting marks the first time in the series that the two teams have played three times in the same season.
Arkansas finished the regular season with a 19-12 overall record and a 10-8 mark in SEC play. The Razorbacks were 18-1 in home games for the year, and finished SEC play undefeated at Bud Walton Arena.
B.J. Young leads all Razorback scorers with 15.1 points per game. Marshawn Powell also averages double figures with 14.5 points per contest.
Coach Stallings is 5-12 all-time against the Razorbacks, and 0-2 against Arkansas in neutral site contests (2007 and 2008 SEC Tournaments).
The Commodores and the SEC Tournament
Vanderbilt will be the #10 seed at the 2013 SEC Tournament in Nashville at the Bridgestone Arena. The Commodores have only been a #10 seed one other time - that came in 1985. Vanderbilt lost to Tennessee in Birmingham that year, 71-51.
The Commodores have been to three consecutive SEC Semifinals.
Vanderbilt owns a 35-49 all-time mark at the SEC Tournament. The Commodores won their first SEC Tournament crown in 2012 for the first time since 1951 in a 71-64 win over #1-ranked Kentucky in New Orleans.
In all, Vanderbilt is making its 52nd appearance in the SEC Tournament. VU has reached the semifinals 12 times and the finals twice. VU's two trips to the finals have both resulted in SEC Tournament Titles, which came in 1951 with a 61-57 win over Kentucky and in 2012 in a 71-64 win over the Wildcats.
Vanderbilt's SEC Tournament record against each opponent follows: Alabama (4-4), Arkansas (0-3), Auburn (2-6), LSU (4-6), Ole Miss (3-3), Mississippi State (8-5), Florida (2-6), Georgia (6-1), Kentucky (4-4), South Carolina (0-0), Tennessee (1-7).
The SEC Tournament in Nashville
The SEC Tournament returns to Nashville this week for the sixth time in tournament history and the first time since 2010. The Commodores have hosted the tournament at Memorial Gym twice in 1984 (1-1) and 1991 (0-1), and the event has been held at the now-Bridgestone Arena in 2001 (0-1), 2006 (1-1), and 2010 (1-1). All-time in games played in Nashville in the SEC Tournament, the Commdores are 3-5.
Coach Stallings and the SEC Tournament
Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings is 10-11 all-time at the SEC Tournament, and has advanced to the semifinals four times and the finals once during his 14-year tenure. The Commodores advanced to the semifinals in 2004 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta and in the three last seasons at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville (2010), the Georgia Dome in 2011, and the New Orleans Arena in 2012. His Commodore team made the finals in 2012.
Although the Commodores captured the 2012 SEC Tournament Championship, there were only three players who played more than three minutes total last season in the tournament. Kedren Johnson played an average of 17.7 minutes in three games, averaged 6.3 points, and made the go-ahead bucket against Kentucky in the finals to propel Vanderbilt to the championship. Rod Odom averaged 11.7 minutes in three games, and averaged 0.7 points and 1.3 rebounds, while Dai-Jon Parker played 10.7 minutes per game and averaged 1.7 points and 1.3 rebounds per game. Shelby Moats played in two games and did not score, while James Siakam and Josh Henderson played in one game each and did not score.
Vanderbilt's Last Time Out
Vanderbilt, winners of six of their last nine, clinched the 10th seed in the 2013 SEC Tournament with a 74-64 win against South Carolina on March 9 at Memorial Gym. Junior Rod Odom and sophomore Dai-Jon Parker led the Commodore effort with 18 points apiece, and sophomore point guard Kedren Johnson added 12 points in the win.
Vanderbilt swept the season series with South Carolina. The Commodores defeated USC in Columbia, 58-51 in January 19.
Three Commodores scored in double-figures, which marks the 15th time this season that has occurred.
Rod Odom scored 18 points, marking the 13th time this season he has scored 10 or more points. Odom scored 12 of the team's final 14 points of the first half.
Kedren Johnson scored 12 points, which is the 22nd time this season he has scored in double-digits.
South Carolina outrebounded the Commodores, 39-32, including 17-8 on the offensive glass.
The Commodores shot 45.8% from the floor, and 82.1% from the charity stripe in the win.
Dai-Jon Parker is shooting 48.1 percent behind the 3-point arc in the last eight games. He's averaging 8.4 points per game in that stretch.
Kedren Johnson converted on 10-of-12 attempts from the free throw line vs. S.C. It marked the second time in three games in which the sophomore has made at least 10 foul shots.
VU has now shot 73.7 percent (73-99) from the free throw line in its last five games and is 4-1 in those games.
'Dores Three-Point Streak Still Intact
Vanderbilt has made a 3-pointer in 862 consecutive games, a streak which began at the inception of the 3-point line in 1986-87. The Commodores rank second only to UNLV 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.
Close Losses in League Play
Of the 10 league losses this season, one has gone to overtime (Ole Miss), two were by four points (Alabama, led by 11 with seven minutes to go, at Kentucky), one was by two points (Kentucky at home), and a pair of games by one point (at Tennessee, at LSU).
The Commodores are only surrendering 60.0 points per game, which marks Vanderbilt's best scoring defensive effort since 1950-51 (60.5 ppg).
Vanderbilt's is ranked 323rd among the 347 Division I basketball playing schools in terms of experience on the roster by kenpom.com. Arkansas is ranked 272nd in terms of experience.