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Coaches Dub Damian Jones a First Team All-SEC Player

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Vanderbilt sophomore Damian Jones has the respect of the SEC. The 6'10" blockmonster earned first-team all-conference honors when the league's coaches were polled during the 2014-15 preseason.

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The 2015 Preseason All-SEC teams are out, and the league's coaches aren't sleeping on Vanderbilt's Damian Jones. The sophomore center was named a first-team all-conference athlete on Thursday.

Jones joins standout players like LSU's Jordan Mickey, Florida's Michael Frazier II, and Kentucky's Andrew and Aaron Harrison on the first team. He earned that honor over touted players like Willie Cauley-Stein, Alex Poythress, and Karl-Anthony Towns, who all ended up on the second unit. The full list is below:

First Team All-SEC
Dorian Finney-Smith – Florida, F, 6-8, 218, Jr., Portsmouth, Va.
Michael Frazier II – Florida, G, 6-4, 194, Jr., Tampa, Fla.
Aaron Harrison – Kentucky, G, 6-6, 212, So., Richmond, Texas
Andrew Harrison – Kentucky, G, 6-6, 210, So., Richmond, Texas
Damian Jones – Vanderbilt, C, 6-10, 240, So., Baton Rouge, La.
Charles Mann – Georgia, G, 6-5, 215, Jr., Alpharetta, Ga.
Jordan Mickey – LSU, F, 6-8, 235, So., Dallas, Texas
Bobby Portis – Arkansas, F, 6-11, 242, So., Little Rock, Ark.
Jarvis Summers – Ole Miss, G, 6-3, 186, Sr., Jackson, Miss.
Second Team All-SEC
Alex Caruso – A&M, G, 6-5, 184, Jr., College Station, Texas
Willie Cauley-Stein – Kentucky, F, 7-0, 240, Jr., Olathe, Kan.
KT Harrell – Auburn, G, 6-4, 212, Sr., Montgomery, Ala.
Jarell Martin – LSU, F, 6-10, 236, So., Baton Rouge, La.
Alex Poythress – Kentucky, F, 6-8, 238, Jr., Clarksville, Tenn.
Josh Richardson – Tennessee, G, 6-6, 200, Sr., Edmond, Okla.
Sindarius Thornwell – South Carolina, G, 6-5, 215, So., Lancaster, S.C.
Karl-Anthony Towns – Kentucky, F, 6-11, 250, Fr., Piscataway, N.J.

That's a huge honor for the player who is poised to lead Vanderbilt in 2014-15. Jones broke out as a freshman to score 11.3 points per game as a true freshman. He led the team with 5.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game as well. His proficiency in the paint gives the Commodores a weapon on par with A.J. Ogilvy and Festus Ezeli in the post.

He'll have to take another step forward if he's going to meet the coaches' expectations this winter. Vanderbilt is counting on him - and a cache of talented newcomers - to bring the 'Dores back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012.