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Vanderbilt snaps four-game losing streak in upset of No. 19 Florida

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Vanderbilt snapped a four-game losing streak by using a strong second half to take down No. 21 Florida, 68-66, on Saturday afternoon in the SEC.

The Commodores (9-10, 3-4) shot 46 percent from the field and nailed 10 three-pointers as Matthew Fisher-Davis led four double-figure scorers with 19 points. For a young team with a new coach in Bryce Drew, this is a solid victory that he can build off of as his team did a great job of executing offense down the stretch.

This is a bad loss at home for No. 19 Florida (14-5, 5-2) and doesn’t help the weak national reputation of the SEC. Sophomore guard KeVaughn Allen lit it up for 29 points for the Gators but Devin Robinson (12 points) was the only other Florida player who finished with double-figures.

As we’ve seen from the Gators the past three seasons, they’re incredibly inconsistent and they have a tendency to show up flat at inopportune times. A lot of that falls on the lack of quality point guard play and the lack of development from former McDonald’s All-American Kasey Hill. Hill isn’t the only Florida player who needs to step up for them to maximize their potential, but this is his final stretch of college ball after an underwhelming career.

Right now, Florida is in position to break a two-year NCAA tournament drought, but losses like this can’t happen again at home if the Gators want to get back in the field.

Vanderbilt gets commitment from Class of 2017 guard

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Vanderbilt added a scoring guard to its Class of 2017 haul as Houston native Maxwell Evans committed.

After a big summer with the Houston Defenders in the Under Armour Association, the 6-foot-2 Evans received a lot of high-major attention before the Commodores landed the commitment. In 17 games this spring and summer, Evans averaged 14.9 points and 3.2 rebounds per game as he shot 35 percent from three-point range.

Considered a three-star prospect on Rivals, Evans really picked up his play as a scorer this summer in the UAA Finals as he put up 17.4 points a contest.

New head coach Bryce Drew now has two commitments in the mix in the Class of 2017 as Evans joins three-star guard Saben Lee. This is a solid base to start the class with and Evans could become a solid scorer in college with some added development.

No. 20 Texas A&M beats Vanderbilt, earns share of SEC title

(AP Photo/Sam Craft)
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Texas A&M continued its recent hot streak on Saturday with a 76-67 home win over Vanderbilt in the SEC. The win gives the Aggies six consecutive victories, but more importantly, gives Texas A&M at least a share of the SEC regular season title.

The Aggies (24-7, 13-5) were led by 17 points and 11 rebounds from Jalen Jones and 16 points from Danuel House as they shot 43 percent from the floor. After the tumultuous stretch in the middle of the SEC season that saw the Aggies lose five straight games, for them to clinch at least a share of the SEC title is a big accomplishment. It was a weird SEC season for Texas A&M — they started 7-0, lost five straight, then won six straight to close — but it shows what kind of talent they had to go on two different winning streaks of at least six games.

Vanderbilt (19-12, 11-7) lost Damian Jones to foul trouble for most of the game and didn’t come out with a great effort for a team that needs bubble wins. Jones led the Commodores with 11 points on 4-for-6 shooting while Wade Baldwin also finished with 11. One positive note for Vanderbilt was that sophomore Riley LaChance (nine points) knocked down three 3-pointers and looked more in rhythm than he had in weeks. If they can get another shooter like LaChance going, it makes Vanderbilt that much more dangerous these next few weeks.

Texas A&M had an impressive regular season in the SEC but the conference tournament is still going to be a huge test for this group. The Aggies haven’t been to the NCAA tournament in a few years and most of these players haven’t been tested in postseason games. The SEC tournament doesn’t compare to the real deal, but it’s a nice practice run for a talented team that has Final Four aspirations.

NEW PODCAST: Court storming, Villanova/Xavier and a weekend preview

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It’s Friday, which means time for another edition of the NBC Sports College Basketball Talk podcast. Today’s episode touches on a number of topics from the last couple of days in college basketball, beginning with Duke’s Grayson Allen and the events within the Blue Devils’ win over Florida State Thursday night.

Was the trip intentional? How’s he dealing with the attention that comes with being a player of his caliber at a school like Duke? Rob Dauster, Raphielle Johnson and Scott Phillips all provide their thoughts on this situation.

Also discussed in the podcast are Sean Miller’s comments on court storming following No. 9 Arizona’s loss at Colorado Wednesday night, the Big East “Game of the Year” between No. 1 Villanova and No. 5 Xavier, the controversial finish between Washington and Oregon State, and some of the top games on this weekend’s schedule.

As always, you can subscribe to the podcast on either iTunes or Stitcher. Or if you prefer, just click “play” in the embedded player below. Thanks for listening!

VIDEO: Quinndary Weatherspoon lifts Mississippi State over Vanderbilt at the buzzer

(AP Photo/Jim Lytle)
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Mississippi State freshman Quinndary Weatherspoon buried a corner 3-pointer at the buzzer as the Bulldogs came from 17 points down in the second half to beat Vanderbilt, 75-74, on Tuesday night.

Weatherspoon led Mississippi State with 24 points, as the Bulldogs trailed 61-44 with 13 minutes left. The loss almost assuredly bursts the bubble of Vanderbilt, who drops to 15-11 and 7-6 in the SEC.

(H/T: The Bulldog Club)

No. 22 South Carolina remains unbeaten with win over Vandy

(AP Photo/Sean Rayford)
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) Sindarius Thornwell had 19 points and eight rebounds and No. 22 South Carolina remained undefeated with a 69-65 victory over Vanderbilt on Saturday.

South Carolina (15-0, 2-0 Southeastern Conference) passed its first tough test of the season, taking its first lead on PJ Dozier’s floater with 10:54 left. Dozier then hit a reverse layup as the rare near sellout crowd at Colonial Life Center roared.

Dozier scored seven of his nine points over the next 5 minutes and the Gamecocks held off Vanderbilt (8-7, 0-3) with good defense. The Commodores missed 19 of their last 22 shots.

South Carolina and SMU are the only unbeaten teams left in Division I. South Carolina has only reached 15 wins in three of its past 10 seasons.

Riley Lachance and Wade Baldwin IV each had 13 points for Vanderbilt.

The Commodores built an 8-0 lead less than 2 minutes in as Luke Kornet hit back-to-back 3-pointers and Damien Jones had a putback.

The deficit was the largest South Carolina had faced all season. The Gamecocks also trailed for 19:45 of the first half, which was more time than they had been behind in any game.

But South Carolina kept it close. Five times the Gamecocks were down one and failed to take the lead.

Once South Carolina took over, though, Vanderbilt couldn’t respond. Nolan Cressler fouled out with 7:55 left and Jones got his fifth foul with 6:34 to go. Baldwin also fouled out at the end as the Commodores sent South Carolina to the line.

Free throws kept Vanderbilt in it. The Commodores made 11 foul shots during the final 14 minutes.

TIP-INS

Vanderbilt: Kornet returned to the starting lineup for the Commodores for the first time since injuring his knee in practice Dec. 8. He scored eight points. … Vanderbilt was picked to finish second in the SEC, but has started 0-3 in the league for the first time since 2013.

South Carolina: The Gamecocks’ 15-0 start is their best since the 1933-34 season. That team also shares South Carolina’s longest winning streak of 17 games with the 1969-70 team that went undefeated in the Atlantic Coast Conference before losing in the tournament. … This is only the third time in 25 SEC seasons the Gamecocks have started with two league wins.

UP NEXT

Vanderbilt hosts Auburn on Tuesday night.

South Carolina travels to Alabama on Wednesday night.