Reviewing Tyrin Lawrence and Rodney Chatman back to back provides an interesting contrast, to say the least, because Lawrence was the main beneficiary of Chatman’s absences throughout the season: Lawrence’s 13 starts all came when Chatman was on the shelf.
And Vanderbilt went 6-7 in those games. That’s probably a bit unfair to Lawrence, but it’s not as though he was all that productive. He wasn’t a good three-point shooter and he was fairly turnover-prone as well. Lawrence was Vanderbilt’s top-rated recruit in the 2020 class, and after missing most of the 2020-21 season to a torn ACL, this was basically his freshman year.
You’d live with that performance from a freshman, I guess, but when Chatman was out Vanderbilt needed better from Lawrence and mostly didn’t get it. He started the first nine games of the season and averaged 6.7 ppg, and that was with a 20-point performance against Winthrop — which turned out to be his only double-figure game all season. In SEC play, Lawrence became an afterthought, averaging 2.2 ppg and 2.0 rpg.
That said, he seemed to be one of the Commodores’ better defenders on the perimeter; at 6’4” and with the quickness to defend both guard spots, he could be useful based on that alone. But the offense has to improve. With both Chatman and Scotty Pippen gone, Vanderbilt will need Lawrence to step up next year. Will his offense improve enough to claim a starting spot? Jerry Stackhouse’s decision to bring in Keonte Kennedy from UTEP suggests that he’s hedging his bets here.