Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Georgia vs. Vandy Hoops Preview

Time to temper the excitement from last Saturday. Tonight, the Dawgs face off against another tough opponent in a very tough place to play -- against Vanderbilt in Memorial Gymnasium. The Commodores are 11-3 on the year, with their only losses coming to West Virginia by three, Missouri by three in overtime, and last Saturday at South Carolina 83-75. Their leading scoring threat is the sharp-shooting sophomore star John Jenkins (enough alliteration for you?), who is averaging 18.3 points per game, and is shooting 39.6% from three land. Their next best player is probably 6'7'' forward Jeffery Taylor, who is averaging 14.4 ppg.

While Vandy does have scorers all over the court, their one weakness could be in the front court. Their biggest player, Festus Ezili, goes 6'11'' and is averaging 12.6 ppg, but only averages 21.1 minutes per game. The aforementioned Jeffery Taylor likes to play more of a mid-range game, and I don't think he can reliably guard our Thompkins/Price combo. Their next best front court player is 6'9'' forward Steve Tchiengang, who might have the most polarizing first name-last name combos in all of sports. But even he is more a a defensive presence, as he only averages 6.8 ppg. Like the Kentucky game, if we can get their big guys (Ezili/Tchiengang) into foul trouble, we should be able to pound it down low on offense.

We all know Vandy's successful history in their quirky gym. They will probably jack a lot of threes, make a lot of them, and we will NOT attempt 34 free throws this game. We need to play outstanding perimeter defense, continue to protect the ball on offense, and pray the threes aren't falling for them. I honestly think this is a much tougher game than last Saturday, given the fact that (a) we're on the road against a good team, and (b) coming off such a huge win, which brings in the letdown factor. The home cookin' should be in full force for this game so if we are able to steal one, it would be more than huge...especially considering we are a NINE POINT UNDERDOG!

Here are Vandy's stats thus far this season:

1 comment:

  1. Ezeli did not have a good game against USCjr, he was in fact totally dominated inside. We all know that Vanderbilt lives and dies by the 3's, if our perimeter defense plays as well against Vandy as they did against Kentucky we have a chance. My biggest concern for Georgia is the lack of preparation for Vandy, due to the weather and of course a late night bus ride. The good news is Vandy is the mirror of Kentucky (without the depth)....Georgia 81-80.