2009-2010 VANDERBILT COMMODORES BASKETBALL PREVIEW
Vanderbilt is very much to the SEC what a school such as Northwestern is to the Big 10. That is, primarily, a school who is unrelenting to sacrifice any of its academic requirements for the sake of improving its ability to compete on a higher level in intercollegiate sports. Now, this does not mean that the Vanderbilt Commodores cannot compete with the other programs in the SEC in college basketball. What it does mean, however, is that entering most seasons, the team is justifiably considered to be an underdog.
However, despite some of these limitations, and despite the fact that the program is rarely mentioned by casual fans and observers when discussing the significant national threats in the SEC, Vandy has established itself in recent years as a consistently good basketball program that should not be overlooked by any opponent, regardless of national ranking. And entering the 2009-2010 season, the Vanderbilt Commodores appear to have more talent than many are giving them credit for.
One of the primary reasons why this team looks positioned to be pretty good in 2009-2010 is the return of nearly all of its significant contributors from last season, And it was a pretty good core to begin with. Add to that one of the top 50 incoming freshmen in the nation, and it gets that much better. Indeed, shooting guard John Jenkins, considered by most national scouting groups to be a four star recruit, is expected to come in and in year one provide Vandy with a significant scoring presence from the outside.
Jenkins will be joining a good, balanced starting five in 2009-2010, a group that did not do a lot of things great, but did a lot of things pretty good. Big man AJ Ogilvy needs to be the physically imposing presence in this coming season that he was for the last. His ability to control the inside is what makes life a lot easier for the guys on the outside. This includes starting point guard Jermaine Beal, starting small forward Jeff Taylor, and shooting guard Brad Tinsley. All of these players have complimentary games around the arc, and all of their games are dependent on a capable inside game opening things up.
Ogilvy is backup up by an intriguing young center by the name of Festus Ezeli. He did not do much in 2008-2009, his freshman season, but he has the physical tools needed to develop, and will likely have a significantly greater impact in the upcoming season.
When everything is taken into consideration, there is very little reason to think that this team will not take a number of steps forward over the course of the upcoming season. If the players continue to develop as they are expected to do, this is a team that, if they aren't being considered among the elite teams in the SEC to start the season, will most likely be considered among the conference's best to close it.
If you haven't read it yet, check out our Kevin Stallings Biography. You can read more about 2007-2008 Vanderbilt basketball team at 2007-2008 Vanderbilt Basketball Team page. Other Vanderbilt Basketball pages include: Vanderbilt Basketball History and Vanderbilt University -- Nashville -- Trip.
VANDERBILT COMMODORES BASKETBALL
If you are looking for our 2008-2009 Vanderbilt Commodores Basketball page, check out 2008-2009 Vanderbilt Commodores Basketball.
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