Dawgs get ready for critical game with Vandy

ATHENS - Josh Kendall's take on tonight's game with Vanderbilt.

Georgia men vs. Vanderbilt
Time/place: Today, 8 p.m., Stegeman Coliseum, Athens, Ga.
Broadcast: Fox SportsNet South
Records: Georgia is 14-10, 4-7 SEC; Vanderbilt is 13-9, 4-7 SEC

About Georgia: Forward Kendrick Johnson has given up on playing this season. After 14 games in which he averaged 2.3 points, Johnson has decided to have season-ending ankle surgery. He considered the surgery before the season but decided to try to play this year. He will have two reconstructive surgeries. The first will be Monday. … Point guard Sundiata Gaines feels better than he did Wednesday in Kentucky, he said Friday. Gaines, who was ill and vomited once during the game, scored just six points against the Wildcats.

About Vanderbilt: The Commodores have four starters in double figures, led by sophomore forward Shan Foster, who is averaging 16.3 points per game. … Vanderbilt's last three conference losses have come by an average of three points. … The Commodores will be wearing uniforms from the 1960s today.

Scouting report: This is a desperation game for both teams. The Commodores were supposed to be one of the top teams in the conference this season but instead enter the game tied for fifth with the Bulldogs in the SEC East. Both teams already are longshots to receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, and a loss today will further dash any hope. "Georgia is probably the most improved team in the league," Vandy coach Kevin Stallings said. "Dennis (Felton) has done a nice job of bringing the program along. It will be a difficult challenge to get a game back on the road." Up next: Georgia vs. South Carolina, Wednesday, 7:00 p.m.; Vanderbilt vs. LSU, Wednesday, 8 p.m.

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