Earlier this season, Vanderbilt Commodores Men's Basketball Head Coach Kevin Stallings admitted that for the first time in his career, he had asked one of his players to deliver the halftime speech. One wonders whether Coach Stallings employed the same strategy down one with twenty to play against the Georgia Bulldogs in the quarterfinals of the 2012 SEC Tournament.
Whether from Stallings or one of the players, the words struck a chord. Vanderbilt jumped out to a seven point lead at the first media timeout and never looked back en route to a 63-41 victory.
It wasn't until 8:44 left in the game before Jeffery Taylor finally broke through and converted a field goal off a layup from an offensive rebound. More importantly, Jeff continued to look for his shot despite a rare off night, eventually connecting from downtown with around 3:45 left. He finished with 6. Brad Tinsley, 12 points, showed some much needed offensive spark for the Commodores, particularly during the stretches where the Commodores struggled to score. John Jenkins paced the Commodores with 15. Lance Goulbourne and Festus Ezeli both had 10.
In the end, it was one pretty good half of basketball for the Commodores, and that one half was more than enough. The Commodores advance to the semifinals and a 2:30pm CT tip to face the Ole Miss Rebels, overtime winners in the earlier game against Tennessee. The game will be televised on ABC.