|Vanderbilt Commodores (4-4, 0-2) vs. Mississippi State Bulldogs (7-4, 2-1)|
|Saturday, Jan. 9 • Noon|
|Memorial Gymnasium (14,326)|
|Watch: SEC Network
Dave Neal (play-by-play), Jon Sundvold (analyst)
Kevin Ingram (play-by-play), Tim Thompson (analyst)
- Meeting for the 131st time, Vanderbilt leads the all-time series with Mississippi State 79-51.
- Mississippi State has won the last two meetings and three of the last four, including last season’s 80-70 win over the Commodores in Starkville, Mississippi.
- Vanderbilt leads the series 47-10 at home.
- Maxwell Evans, Myles Stute, Dylan Disu, Scotty Pippen Jr., and DJ Harvey started their first game together. It was the sixth different starting lineup combination in eight games for the Commodores this year.
- Senior center Clevon Brown was unavailable to play and has missed three games due to injury and two others due to medical reasons this season. Last year, he missed the final 23 games due to a knee injury.
- Walk-on sophomore Braelee Albert missed his second straight game while freshman transfer Issac McBride also missed the game due to injury.
- In all, Vanderbilt has had seven players miss a combined 17 games so far this season: Tyrin Lawrence (1), Akeem Odusipe (1), Jordan Wright (2), Harvey (2), Albert (2), Stute (4), Brown (5).
Full Steam Ahead
- Vanderbilt has made at least four 3s in 23 consecutive games. The streak began immediately after the Commodores were held without a 3 against Tennessee on Jan. 25, 2020, ending a streak of 1,080 straight games with at least one made 3.
- Vanderbilt has hit the 80-point mark 12 times in the coach Jerry Stackhouse era with a 10-2 record in those games, including a 10-0 mark in regulation. The only two losses came in overtime (at Richmond, vs. SMU last season).
- Vanderbilt is 0-4 on weekdays and 4-0 on the weekends.
- Vanderbilt played just six nonconference games—its fewest since 1952-53 (the first season Memorial Gymnasium opened). At that time, Tulane and Georgia Tech were still in the SEC.
- Vanderbilt ranks second in the SEC with a .758 free throw percentage and third in the league with 9.4 made 3s/game.
- Disu and Pippen Jr. are the only two Commodores to start every game this season. They have started the last 22 games together. Disu has started 39 straight games. The only game he has not started since stepping on campus was the first game of his freshman year.
- Disu is averaging a near-double-double with 12.3 points and an SEC-best 9 rebounds. He has recorded three double-doubles this season (eight for his career).
- Not only is Pippen Jr. second in the SEC with 22 points per game, he is also second in the league with 5 assists per game.
- Pippen Jr., who was named preseason All-SEC second team, has scored at least 20+ points in five of eight games and scored a career-high 30 against Alcorn State (Dec. 27). He has tied or matched his career-high point total four times already this season.
Moving Up the Ranks
- Fifth-year senior Brown has 116 career blocks. That is tied with Julian Terrell for the sixth-most in a Vanderbilt career. A.J. Ogilvy is fifth with 145.
- Three transfers became eligible to play for Vandy this season: redshirt junior Harvey, freshman McBride and redshirt sophomore Quentin Millora-Brown.
- Harvey, who began his career at Notre Dame, and Millora-Brown, who started his college career at Rice, were both with the program in 2019-20.
- McBride came to West End from Kansas in the spring and was granted a waiver to become immediately eligible.
- All three have started games this season: Millora-Brown (5), Harvey (5), McBride (1).
- Vanderbilt welcomed five true freshmen to the fold for the 2020-21 season: Max Adelman, Lawrence, Odusipe, Stute and Trey Thomas.
- Including McBride, Vandy freshmen have combined for nine starts this year: Lawrence (5), Stute (2), McBride (1) and Thomas (1).
- Thomas is second among freshmen in the SEC in 3-point percentage (.423) while Stute leads the Dores rookies with 22.5 minutes and 10.0 points per game.
- Lawrence made the start in his first collegiate game against Mississippi Valley State (Dec. 13) and finished with 14 points on 6 of 8 shooting to go along with four assists and four rebounds and just two turnovers in 25 minutes.
- Thomas, a Canadian native, was a late signee in July, while Odusipe is a Nigerian native who prepped at Catholic in Knoxville. Adelman came to Nashville as a walk-on.
- Davion Mintz hit a left-corner 3 with 47 seconds to play at Rupp Arena on Tuesday to lift Kentucky past Vanderbilt 77-74.
- The Commodores had a 3-pointer out of the hands of Maxwell Evans at the buzzer that would have tied the game, but the ball rolled around the rim and out.
- Vandy had four players combined for 70 of the team’s 77 points. Pippen, Disu and Wright all scored 18 each while Stute added 16. Pippen had eight rebounds and eight assists while Disu grabbed 10 boards and blocked two shots.
A Vandy Victory Would…
- … be the second home win in the last three against the SEC (beat South Carolina in 2019-20 home finale).
- … avoid the season’s first three-game losing streak.
A Vandy Defeat Would…
- … be the first three-game losing streak to the Bulldogs since a four-game skid between 2001-04.
- … mark the third straight 0-3 start in SEC play.
- … be less good than a win.
- Vanderbilt goes back on the road to face a pair of nationally-ranked opponents next week (at Missouri on Tuesday night and at Tennessee on Saturday afternoon).