To say that this season hasn’t gone the way that many expected for the Vanderbilt Commodores (9-19, 0-15 SEC) is an understatement.
The team that started the season 9-3 is long gone.
Now, the Commodores are on a 16 game losing streak and lost all 15 SEC games.
To be fair… the ‘Dores haven’t really been getting blown out in the majority of their conference games – seven of the 15 SEC losses have been by less than ten points. With that said, you don’t get credit for only barely losing.
Vandy’s game today against Texas A&M (12-15, 5-10 SEC) is an absolute must win for the Commodores. It’s the best, and possibly last, chance to get a conference win this season.
The Aggies, whose best win came against Oregon St. in December, provide Vandy their best chance to win for two reasons: They simply aren’t that good and they are worse than the other teams that Vanderbilt still has to play.
The two struggling teams are similar in a lot of ways. Offensively, the Commodores average 70.7 points per game and the Aggies average 72.2.
However, they are nearly dead even in a crucial stat- turnovers per game. Both teams average approximately 14 per game.
If Head Coach Bryce Drew can have Vandy prepared to play clean, smart basketball, they may be able to capitalize on a team that is just as mistake-prone as they are.
After Texas A&M, Vandy’s last two opponents are Arkansas (14-14, 5-10) and LSU (23-5, 13-2).
While Arkansas’s current six game losing streak doesn’t look good, it’s perfectly fine compared to Vanderbilt’s. Arkansas’ games and flipping a coin are similar to predict. This is proven by their 14-14 record, which is a shining example of how inconsistent and unpredictable the Razorbacks are.
Will Vandy play the Arkansas team that beat LSU and nearly took Kentucky to overtime? Or will they play the team that lost to Western Kentucky and Missouri? Your guess is as good as mine.
While Vandy does play Arkansas at home, I’m not sure that is much of a reason to have confidence in the ‘Dores anymore. This season may be the first time in school history that the team doesn’t have a winning home record at Memorial Gym.
Vandy has never had a losing season in the 67-year history of Memorial Gym. A loss tonight would drop the Dores to 8-9 at home with one game left.
— Adam Sparks (@AdamSparks) February 28, 2019
After playing Arkansas, Vanderbilt concludes the season by playing LSU on the road. Do I need to say more?
At this point, 2018-2019 is a sunken ship that Vandy can’t salvage. Despite that fact, a win over Texas A&M would save the program from the embarrassment of being swept within the SEC (which should never happen to any SEC team in basketball- period).