Men's Hoops: Harlem Globetrotters game preview

7:00 PM, Monday, November 11, Memorial Gymnasium <P>The Vanderbilt Commodores play their first exhibition game against the famous Harlem Globetrotters. This Globetrotter team is engaged in a serious basketball tour, taking on college teams, and has already defeated Purdue 83-64, St. John's 86-61, and Western Kentucky 69-54. After playing Vanderbilt, they visit NCAA champion Maryland Tuesday night, and then play Mississippi State, Connecticut, Central Connecticut, and Ohio State.

The Commodores will have 14 players available, 12 on scholarship and two walk-ons. It is likely that Coach Kevin Stallings will view the exhibition games mainly as an opportunity to try out various combinations on the court, seeking the ones that are most effective. Most of the players are likely to see 15 minutes or more of action in both these games.

The Globetrotters have 15 players on the roster. In the first three games the two leading scorers were 6-5 Aundre Branch (Baylor, 1992) and 6-7 Cedric Ceballos (Cal-State Fullerton, 1990), with 46 and 45 points. Ceballos had a long career in the NBA.

Other top Globetrotter scorers have been 6-3 Chudney Gray (St. John's, 2000), 6-8 Alex Sanders (Louisville, 1999), and 6-1 Brandon Dean (Arkansas, 2002), with 27, 23, and 18 points respectively. 6-7 Todd Day (Arkansas, 1992) leads the defense in steals. The most impressive size is supplied by 7-2, 310-lb. Lorenzo Coleman (Tennessee Tech, 1997) and 7-0, 260 Olden Polynice (Virginia, 1986). Polynice played for many years in the NBA.

Other Globetrotter players who have seen action are: 6-11 Solomon Hughes (California, 2002); 6-10 Jermaine Williams (UNC-Charlotte, 2002); 6-9 Garnett Thompson (Providence, 2002); 6-9 Chris Richardson (UNLV, 2002); 6-7 Tyrus Boswell (Kentucky Wesleyan, 2002); 6-4 Reggie Jordan (New Mexico State, 1991); and 6-3 Ronald Nunnery (Lamar, 1999).

Victory against the Globetrotters is probably secondary in Coach Stallings' mind, but the fans are always thinking about it. To have any chance of victory, the Commodores will have to shoot better from the field against the Globetrotters than did Purdue (37.3%), St. John's (33.3%), and Western Kentucky (29%). The Globetrotters have not dominated the rebounding, despite the great size that they can call upon, the totals being: 35-38 against Purdue; 44-38 against St. John's; and 45-43 against Western Kentucky. (The Hilltoppers did not have the service of their 7-footer, Chris Marcus, when they played the Globetrotters.)

This first exhibition game will mark the debuts of five new Commodores: 6-11 Ted Skuchas; 6-9 Julian Terrell; 6-7 Geoff Peck; 6-3 Adam Payton; and 5-11 Mario Moore. Top Stories