Kedren Johnson's departure was just the beginning of an upperclass exodus. Senior shooting guard Dai-Jon Parker will also be leaving Vanderbilt University.
Parker's departure comes as some surprise. He played in all 31 games last season and posted career highs of 8.3 points and 3.2 assists last season. He was expected to lead this team as a senior this winter. Instead, the Commodores will have to turn to a cache of young guards to keep the team afloat.
Coach Kevin Stallings made it seem as though Parker's departure was the result of a failure to meet team standards in the university's release Friday afternoon:
"It is a privilege to be a Vanderbilt basketball player and with that privilege comes a high level of responsibility, both on and off the playing floor," said Stallings. "Unfortunately, the standards that were clearly set forth in both cases were not met and led to this decision.
"I did agree, however, to wait to announce both decisions until after they had determined where they would be continuing their college careers. Fortunately, our staff has been preparing for this possibility since last fall and feel that we have brought in six very talented perimeter players to lead us going forward. We certainly wish Dai-Jon and Kedren the best as they move forward with their lives."
Team officials did not elaborate on the reasons why Johnson and Parker would no longer be welcomed back to the program. Parker's transfer means that one player - Shelby Moats - now remains on the roster from the team's 2011 and 2012 recruiting classes.
Stallings's comment on the team's depth chart is accurate. The Commodores have a wealth of backcourt talent set to make their marks in Nashville this winter. Wade Baldwin, Matthew Fisher-Davis, Shelton Mitchell, and Riley LaChance are all highly-touted freshmen who will get several opportunities to contribute against SEC opponents in 2014-2015. They'll have big shoes to fill now that Johnson and Parker are gone.