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Ole Miss @ Vandy Basketball Preview

The Rebels (12-6 (0-3)) travel to Nashville tonight to take on the Vanderbilt Commodores (12-4 (1-2)) at the least fair basketball stadium in the country. Be sure to check in for as long as we're in it tonight on CSS. Vandy's floorplan is just silly.

Vanderbilt is fresh off a crushing defeat at the hands of a Tennessee team who trailed the commodores by as much as seventeen during the game. I'm afraid that will do something it would never do for us: energize them. Festus Ezeli is a force down low at 6'11" 255 lbs.

Read a little bit more analysis after the jump.

6'4" 215 pound guard John Jenkins leads the 'Dores in scoring with 18.6. He averages eight three point attempts per game and is connecting at just under 40 percent on the year despite a horrific two for fifteen showing from the arc against Marquette. If we have any hope of beating Vanderbilt, we need to limit his shot attempts. Of course, there's more to deal with on this Vanderbilt team than just Jenkins, but if you take him away, you've got a chance.

Festus Ezeli should be nearly impossible for us to handle, given our strategy of fouling with our big men on defense and not trying to get opposing bigs into foul trouble. If Buckner only plays for 20 minutes or so like he did against State, we're toast.

In a non-game-related note, I've seen people dogging on Trevor Gaskins a lot lately. I know that the team isn't playing well, and a tournament appearance appears nearly impossible at this time. However, I think that placing a large part of the blame on Gaskins is unfair. He hasn't been playing much recently, probably because he still has a lingering injury. When he was healthy before being injured, he was playing solid on-ball defense. Give the guy a break.


Vandy 85


Individual Predictions:

1. Festus Ezeli scores 25+

2. Reggie Buckner plays fewer than 20 minutes

3. Terrance Henry scores 18+ points.