Jerry Stackhouse just completed his first full recruiting class as the head men's basketball coach of the Vanderbilt Commodores, and last week he sat down with Kayla Anderson of WKRN News 2 for a video interview where he talked about this class of new recruits and other things concerning his team.
"Can you see this big smile on my face, right here (pointing to his face)," said Stackhouse. "IT feels good, you know to have a full roster. I'm excited about the talent that we're bringing in, but you know again when a couple guys went down last year we were depending on some of our walk-on guys, and those guys did a great job, but there's nothing like having SEC talent going up against SEC talent."
"So we're excited for all the pieces, even the guys we had sitting out last year. DJ Harvey, Quintin Millora-Brown, and then the incoming class with Issac McBride, Tyrin Lawrence, Akeem Odisipe, and Myles Stute, who was one of our signees." continued Stackhouse. "We're excited about our group, we really are. Especially with that group that was able to play a ton of minutes last year with Scotty and Dylan and Jordan Wright. Those guys being back and understanding what we're doing now is probably one of the biggest gets we got was getting Clevon Brown back, him getting the medical redshirts. So, oh man, you know it's disappointing that we're not in the gym right now but when we get back I'm excited about what we'll look like once we're all together again."
In his first season as Vanderbilt's head coach, Stackhouse's team endured two key injuries that heavily impacted the season with the losses of Clevon Brown and Aaron Nesmith to season-ending injuries. However, those players Stackhouse mentioned, including walk-ons Bralee Albert, Jon Jossell, Drew Weikert, and Isaiah Rice somehow managed to win three conference games while scaring both Kentucky and Tennessee on the road.
Work remains to be done for Stackhouse and the Commodores, but with the return of Brown, Ejike Obinna along with the additions of Millora-Brown and Odisipe, this year's version should have an improved interior game.
It's a stretch to think this team is ready to compete for the conference title, but it's also not unreasonable to think it can climb out of the basement of the conference in year two under Stackhouse.