Kentucky opened SEC play with a very convincing 85-63 win over Mississippi State Wednesday night and now the Commodores of Vanderbilt await.
Any Kentucky fan with their salt knows that playing Vandy inside Memorial Gymnasium is no easy task. Some of the best Kentucky teams have left Nashville with their tails between their legs after the 'Dores' had handed them a more than shocking loss. Year in and year out, Memorial is one of the toughest venues in the country to come out of with a win.
The entire atmosphere is bizarre, from the benches being under the baskets, the raised floor, the fact that the shot clocks aren't on top of the basketball goal where they usually are but are instead off to the side in the corner of the floor and then you add in the fact that those horrible black and gold colors are everywhere you look makes it very difficult for any visiting team. The place was built in 1952 and has a maximum capacity of 14,326 and you can bet that every seat will be filled when the Cats come to town. My hatred for Memorial just simply cannot be put into words...
Let's hit the high spots of some of the history of Vanderbilt University…
LOCATION: Nashville, Tenn
NICKNAME: Commodores (Dores)
MASCTO: Mr. Commodore
**Vanderbilt is the SEC's only private institution and also the smallest.**
Tom Schulman- Screen writer (Dead Poets Society)
Dierks Bentley- Country Music Artist
Randy Brook- Song writer (Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer)
Roseanne Cash- Singer Songwriter
Amy Grant- Contemporary Christian Music Artist
Molly Sims- Model, Actress (dropped out to pursue modeling)
Al Gore- 45th Vice President of the United States (Did not Graduate)
Tipper Gore- Former Second Lady of The United States
Skip Bayless- ESPN
Norman Shumway- Performed the first heart transplant in the United States
Now it's time for a look at how these two longtime SEC foes match-up…
BY THE NUMBERS:
PPG: 70 81
RPG: 37 44
APG: 14 13
SPG: 5 4
BPG: 4 7
TPG: 15 13
FG%: 46 47
FT%: 64 66
3P%: 34 30
***IT SHOULD ALSO BE NOTED THAT VANDY HAS RECENTLY DISMISSED THEIR LEADING SCORER, ERIC MCCLELLAN FOR VIOLATING THE UNIVERSITIES "ACADEMIC POLICY".
Kentucky owns the series with an overall record of 138-46. These two teams have a history that goes all the way back to 1912 when the first game was played with Kentucky winning 28-17. Kentucky owns the longest winning streak of the series at 19 straight wins from 1940-1951. The second longest win streak was 18 straight from 1993 until 2002 also owned by Kentucky. The longest win streak Vandy has had over the course of the series is 4 wins which they have achieved twice 1973-1974 and 2006-2007, surprisingly enough Billy Gilliespie was the coach who halted the Cats' 4 game skid against the Dores in 2008…
I don't have a real hate for Vanderbilt like I do other SEC foes, but I do have an extreme dislike for their coach, Kevin Stallings. The guy has an extreme sense of entitlement that is based upon nothing. He has been on the sidelines in Nashville for what seems like one hundred years and hasn't accomplished anything that would give him his 'holier than thou' attitude that he carries with pride.
The game tips tomorrow at tomorrow at 3:30 on CBS…..