I said these were getting done and damnit, they’re getting done.
Issac McBride certainly had his moments in his first and, as it turns out, only season in Nashville. He scored a season-high 16 points in the final game of the regular season, a 56-46 loss at Ole Miss, and that was the tail end of a six-game stretch to close the regular season in which McBride averaged 20.2 minutes per game and 8.8 ppg. Perhaps it was a surprise, then, that McBride elected to transfer when his role on the team seemed to be increasing late in the season and Scotty Pippen Jr. was about to declare for the NBA Draft, potentially opening up a good chunk of minutes for McBride in 2021-22.
But of course, Pippen wasn’t McBride’s real competition for minutes; that was Trey Thomas, a fellow freshman with a similar skillset who drew consistent minutes all season. Thomas likewise had his ups and downs, but he finished the season with a considerably better three-point percentage. The final nail in the coffin may well have been Vanderbilt’s two-game run in the SEC Tournament, during which McBride played a grand total of 12 minutes and scored three points while Thomas was single-handedly keeping Vanderbilt in the game in the second half of the season-ending loss to Florida. (Whether Thomas is actually the better player of the two is sort of irrelevant here, since it’s pretty obvious that Jerry Stackhouse thinks Thomas is the better player.)
As of this moment, McBride hasn’t found a new home, but I can pretty easily see why Vanderbilt only needed to keep one of him and Thomas. We’ll see down the road if that decision was the correct one.