The Blue Raiders and Commodores have met 35 times since 1914, and while Vanderbilt leads the all-time series, Middle Tennessee has won the previous two meetings, including last year’s overwhelming victory in Murphy Center, 71-48.
In that game, Giddy Potts led the way for the Blue Raiders, scoring 27 points on 10-of-17 shooting from the field and a season-high nine rebounds.
This year, MT will continue to look towards Potts and senior forward Nick King to carry the scoring burden. King currently ranks second in Conference USA and fifth in the country in scoring (24.3 points per game) while shooting 60.2/46.2/85 percent on the floor.
King is coming off a career night against Florida Gulf Coast, where he posted 32 points and 11 rebounds.
“I just think Nick is off to a fantastic start,” said head coach Kermit Davis. “The competition is going to keep getting stiffer and stiffer, but what I was impressed with about his performance against Florida Gulf Coast is that he competed the most he has competed to win the game (this season).”
Meanwhile, this season the Commodores are 3-5 under second year coach Bryce Drew. However, their experienced roster currently has three players averaging in double figures.
“I think Vanderbilt’s going to win a lot of games in the SEC and we’re looking forward to going over there,” said Davis. “I’ve watched them play four or five times (this year) and they’ve had one of the toughest schedules in college basketball.”
Seniors Jeff Roberson (14.4 ppg), Riley LaChance (12.6 ppg) and Matthew Fisher-Davis (11.3 ppg) are shouldering the scoring burden for Drew and the Commodores.
Roberson has also been a force on the glass, averaging 9.4 rebounds per game, good for top 50 in the country.
First tip is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. in Memorial Gymnasium. The game will air on SEC Network and can be streamed on ESPN3.