Player of the Week
John Jenkins, Vanderbilt
The 6'4 sophomore scored a career-high 32 points in leading the 'Dores to a critical SEC East victory over Kentucky. Jenkins played the full 40 minutes, hitting 11 of 17 shots, 6 of 10 three's and 4 of 5 free throws. He produced an uncharacteristically all-around stat line, adding 3 rebounds, 3 assists, a steal and a block. He was clutch as per usual, scoring 18 second half points with the game in the balance. The Wildcats length at the guard and wing positions could not disrupt his rhythmic shooting and lightning quick release. Just two days earlier Jenkins poured in 20 points in a win over Alabama. He's leading the conference in scoring for the season (19.8) and in SEC games (22.3). Vanderbilt remains 2.5 games behind Florida in the standings, and if they'd like to entertain hopes of a conference title, a victory at Georgia on Wednesday night is imperative.
[Player: Tony Mitchell, Alabama
Hello again, Mr. Mitchell. The athletic specimen has now scored 20 or more points in four straight games, three of them victories. He is quickly emerging as a legit offensive force to supplement his hustle stat kingship. In games at Vanderbilt and versus Mississippi this week he averaged 21 points, 5 rebounds, 1.5 blocks and a steal, while knocking down 18 of 29 field goal attempts (62%). Mitchell has scored in double figures in fourteen consecutive games, and swiped a steal in an amazing seventeen straight. The Tide are well in control of the SEC West, but the upcoming schedule doesn't leave many opportunities for resume padding W's.
Gerald Robinson, Georgia
Since lauding his praises a few weeks back, Robinson's play has taken a severe turn for the worst. In his last four games he's turned the ball over 15 times against 10 assists, putting up a touch over 9 points per on 42% shooting (49% on the season). Opponents have pinched in on the Bulldogs paint-driven squad, forcing them to succeed with ball movement and perimeter decision making. Robinson has struggled to make the necessary adjustments. He is lethal one on one, but limited otherwise.
Not So Honorable Mention
Cameron Tatum, Tennessee- 4.5 PPG, 3-12 FG, 1-6 3PT and 2-5 FT (including missed 1 and 1 down stretch at Florida).
Kodi Augustus, Mississippi State- 12 turnovers in two games, including 8 versus Arkansas. Averaging 3.3 TO per game at 6'8.
Top 5: Tournament Resumes
1. Florida- 20-5, 9-2 RPI (11) SOS (7)
Key Non-Conference Wins: @ Florida State, @ Xavier
Bad Losses: UCF (neutral) vs. Jacksonville, versus South Carolina
Projected Seed: #4
2. Kentucky- 17-7, 5-5 RPI (14) SOS (11)
Key Non-Conference Wins: Washington (neutral) vs. Notre Dame, at Louisville
Bad Losses: None
Projected Seed: #5
3. Vanderbilt- 18-6, 6-4 RPI (15) SOS (13)
Key Non-Conference Wins: North Carolina (neutral), vs. Marquette, vs. St. Mary's
Bad Losses: @ South Carolina, vs. Arkansas
Projected Seed: #5
4. Tennessee- 15-5, 5-5 RPI (25) SOS (3)
Key Non-Conference Wins: Villanova (neutral), @ Pittsburgh, vs. Memphis
Bad Losses: vs. Oakland, @ Charlotte, vs. USC, vs. Charleston
Projected Seed: #9
5. Georgia- 17-7, 6-4 RPI (43) SOS (39)
Key Non-Conference Wins: vs. UAB
Bad Losses: None
Projected Seed: #11
Mississippi 16-9, 4-6 RPI (61) SOS (40)
Alabama 16-8, 8-2 RPI (85) SOS (118)
The hot shooting in Nashville extended past John Jenkins. Vanderbilt shot 49% from the floor as a unit, 20-39 from distance and 42-50 from the FT line (84%).
On the opposite end of the spectrum, South Carolina hit just 18 of 59 field goals (31%) and 4 of 23 three pointers (17%) in a 60-56 home loss versus Georgia. I hate to pick on Bruce Ellington, but he shot 7-31 this week and 2 of 16 from deep.
Kentucky's Josh Harrellson recorded his first double-digit rebound game in a month, notching 10 boards Saturday at Vanderbilt.