Vanderbilt Basketball Preview: Tennessee

The Vanderbilt Commodores (18-11, 10-6)  will finish up their home schedule against Tennessee (13-16, 6-10) Tuesday night at Memorial Gym.  Here is your VandyMania.com preview of Vols.

While the 'Dores are 13-2 at home with the sole losses coming against Dayton and LSU, the Volunteers road record is a paltry 1-10 with the sole win coming over a month and a half ago against Mississippi State.

Tennesssee can be dangerous at times, like on the 2nd of February when they came back from a 21-point deficit to beat the then 20th ranked Kentucky Wildcats.  In the last month the Vols are 3-6 with losses to Arkansas and Missouri, and wins over LSU and Auburn.

Kevin Punter is second in scoring in the conference but has not been cleared to dress in the last three games due to a stress fracture in his right foot.   Junior guard Robert Hubbs III is third on the team in scoring and also missed Saturday's loss against Arkansas with a bruised knee. 

The 'Dores can not sleep with Punter out as the Vols have shown they can win without them like they did in their recent 81-65 victory over LSU.

With those injuries, senior forward Armani Moore will be Vols' main threat on the court. 

Senior Devon Baulkman is close to scoring in the double-digits and has also been battling a long term shoulder injury. 

After starting the first 10 games of the season, senior Derek Reese saw seen a limited role and leads the Vols in field goal percentage.

Canadian Kyle Alexander doesn't see many minutes or take many shots but he shoots the ball very well from the field. 

Freshman guard Shembari Phillips has each of his six starts coming in the last six games since Auburn.  Phillips, along with Baulkman are among the Vols top 3-point threats.

At 6-foot-4, Moore has been the top rebounding threat for the Tennessee.  6-foot-7 forward Reese is second on the team in hitting the boards. 

Next to Moore no one comes close to assists per game for the Vols.  Baulkman measures 6-foot-4 at guard and comes in second with less than half of Moore's assists.

Moore again hit the top of the charts in the block column.  The 6-foot-9 freshman forward Alexander comes in second in blocks per game.

If you hadn't already become tired of hearing his name, Moore is also the leading stealer for the Vols.  A huge part of the game for the Commodores will be not allowing him to get into a groove.

This game is a must win for NCAA tournament hopes.  If Vanderbilt comes out slow and allows the Vols to upset them, their chances of going dancing are dramatically reduced.

Tuesday night's game tips off at 6:00 PM Central Time and can be seen on the SEC Network. 


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