If you sat through Wednesday's loss to Florida - a game that Billy Donovan suggested "may have set college basketball back 20 years" - then you might as well watch Saturday's game. Vanderbilt will host a Missouri team that has lost 12 straight games with hopes of extending that streak to a Goodman's dozen. This matchup will be a lot of things - but pretty isn't one of them.
Attrition has sunk the Tigers to the bottom of the SEC standings in 2015. Like Vandy, Mizzou only has one senior that gets regular rotation minutes - guard Keith Shamburger. The rest of the team is made up of underclassmen; Missouri's last two recruiting classes have brought a total of 10 new players to the roster.
The Tigers are 0-12 since starting off conference play with an overtime win against LSU. Their average margin of defeat in those games is 14.2 points. If the SEC were trying to hand pick a bounce-back opponent for the Commodores, they could do no better than this 2014-15 Missouri squad.
The Opponent: The University of Missouri (7-19, 1-12 SEC)
KenPom Rankings: Missouri is 202nd. Vanderbilt is 50th.
Key Stat: 40%. As in, five Mizzou players that average 15 minutes or more for the Tigers are shooting below basketball's Mendoza line (one, Wes Clark, will miss tomorrow's game due to injury). Missouri has been anything but efficient this season. They've made fewer than 40 percent of their shots in five of their 12 conference losses this season. Vanderbilt, on the other hand, is coming off a game in which they made 33 percent of their shots from the field. Yeah...this one could get ugly fast.
Matchup to Watch: Johnathan Williams III vs. James Siakam. Williams is leading the Tigers in scoring and rebounding, but he's relatively inefficient for a 6'9" forward. He'll have a size and length advantage over Vandy's Tasmanian Devil of a big man Siakam, but the Commodore has been playing stout defense in recent weeks. He's averaged 2.8 blocks and more than a steal per game since Vanderbilt broke their losing streak against Florida to open February. Look for "Bamba" to have another big game against an outmanned Tiger team.
Starters and Rotation Players:
|G -||Wade Baldwin IV||8||3.8||4.3|
|G -||Riley LaChance||12.7||3.1||2.4|
|F -||Jeff Roberson||4.8||3.5||1.1|
|F -||James Siakam||9||5.7||0.5|
|C -||Damian Jones||14.8||6.6||0.8|
|F -||Luke Kornet||8.4||3.8||0.9|
|G/F -||Matthew Fisher-Davis||6.1||2||1.1|
|G -||Shelton Mitchell||4.6||2.3||3.6|
|G -||Keith Shamburger||8.5||3.2||3.8|
|G -||Namon Wright||5.4||2||0.8|
|G -||D'Angelo Allen||3.8||3.3||0.7|
|F -||Johnathan Williams III||12.6||7.1||0.8|
|F -||Ryan Rosburg||3.4||2.8||0.3|
|G -||Tramaine Isabell||4.9||1.4||1.6|
|G -||Montague Gill-Caesar||9.3||2.9||0.4|
|F -||Jakeenan Gant||5.2||2.1||0.4|