Alabama Hosts Vanderbilt in Mid-Week SEC Tilt
Jan. 12, 2010
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Alabama men’s basketball returns to Coleman Coliseum for its first SEC home game of the season when it hosts Vanderbilt at 8 p.m. The game will be televised regionally on CSS.
Both squads enter the cross-divisional contest with 1-0 league records after last weekend as Alabama went on the road and defeated LSU, 66-49, while Vanderbilt handled Florida at home by a 95-87 margin. The win, Alabama’s fourth straight, improved the squad to 11-4 this season with three of the four losses coming to ranked opponents while Vanderbilt is 12-3 with six straight wins and votes in both polls.
“Vanderbilt, in my opinion, is playing as well as anybody in the league right now,” said Alabama head coach Anthony Grant. “I’m really impressed with the balance they have offensively. Defensively, I think they’re really doing a great job of not only interior defense but on the perimeter as well.”
Alabama’s defense has held three straight to opponents to under 40 percent shooting from the field with those three opponents averaging just 54.7 points and facing an average deficit of 15.3 points.
“For us to have a chance to win, I think it starts with the defensive end,” said Grant. “I’m pleased that our guys have been able to take what we work on in practice daily and have emphasized all year defensively. I want our guys focused on the defensive end of the floor and understanding how that helps us in other areas.”
JaMychal Green and Mikhail Torrance lead Alabama with 15.6 and 15.5 points per game, respectively while Green leads a frontcourt that has outscored four straight opponents in the paint including racking up a 38-16 advantage at LSU.
Green scored a game-high 14 points and LSU and has also been getting it done outside of the scoring and rebounding columns with seven assists, six blocks and four steals in the last three games whilte Torrance has converted on 51.3 percent of his shots this season with 5.1 assists per game that have led to 11.9 points per game.
Also on the perimeter, junior Senario Hillman has come on strong lately with four double-digit outings in his last five games. In the last three games alone, he also leads the team in assists with 4.7 per game.
Vanderbilt’s offense, which averages a stout 79.3 points per game, boasts four scorers in double figures with Jeffery Taylor’s 14.1 per game leading the way.