Tennessee, 11-6, started their season with five straight victories. The Lady Vols are just 6-6 since that successful opening stretch of wins. UT has suffered an uncharacteristic three losses in their last four games. On Monday the Lady Vols fell at Notre Dame by double digits, before that UT was stunned at Arkansas and on Jan. 10 lost at home by eight to Florida.
Looking at the UT stats leaders, Diamond DeShields, one of the heaviest ever recruited women's basketball players leads the Vols in scoring. Forward Bashaara Graves and 6-foot-6 center Mercedes Russell also average in double digits for UT.
UT has struggled from the 3-point arc this season. Part-time starter forward Kortney Dunbar is the most accurate from 3-point range for the Vols. Graves leads UT in field goal percentage.
Other stats leaders for the Lady Vols include Graves and Russell who have each pulled down well over 100 rebounds. DeShields and Reynolds each have over forty assists. DeShields also leads Tennessee in steals.
Looking at the Vandy-UT stats comparison, the two teams are nearly identical in points scored per game but Vandy has the better scoring defense and shoots better from 3-point and field goal range. UT leads the way in rebounding, steals and blocks but gives up more turnovers. The Vols also have a stronger RPI.
To pull off a historic win in Knoxville the Commodore women must play a tight defense like they did against South Carolina and others while shooting well all night. UT will make runs but the Vandy women need to answer and take the large orange crowd out of the game.
Thursday's game tips off at 6 pm CT and can be seen on the SEC Network.
For VandyMania.com and Scout, this is Don Yates.