The Vanderbilt Commodores (8-13, 2-6 SEC) actually seem to be better than their record looks, a fact that was apparent the last time they took the floor, an 81-78 win over the TCU Horned Frogs that was part of the SEC's 6-4 victory in the annual Big 12/SEC Challenge -- the first time the SEC has taken the challenge.
Another big win? The Kentucky Wildcats' 83-76 win at West Virginia, in which Kentucky erased a 17-point second half deficit. Tonight, Vanderbilt heads up to Rupp Arena to play the Wildcats, who are now 16-5, 5-3 in the SEC, and after falling out of the AP Top 25 for the first time since the final poll of the 2013-14 season, are back in the rankings at #21 after winning two in a row last week. Kentucky is ranked #25 in KenPom, and KenPom's algorithm gives Vanderbilt just a 16% chance of winning, predicting a final score of 77-67.
Tonight's game will be the SEC's featured game on Super Tuesday, with ESPN televising the game with Joe Tessitore and Sean Farnham on the call. The game can be streamed on the WatchESPN app; Joe Fisher's call can be found on the Vanderbilt IMG Sports Network.
The last time Vanderbilt played these guys was on January 13. Kentucky won 74-67 at Memorial Gym, but the game was tied at 59 with five minutes left. Since Rupp Arena opened in 1976, Vanderbilt has only won there twice, in 2006 and 2007.