Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball roster preview

After a number of key departures from last year’s team, the Commodores are set to begin year two of the Stackhouse era and The Vanderbilt Hustler Sports Staff provides an in-depth look at the new roster.


Scotty Pippen Jr. rises up for a dunk against Clark Atlanta in 2019. (Hustler Multimedia/Hunter Long)

Year two under head coach Jerry Stackhouse is finally set to begin on Nov. 27 against Valparaiso, and following an injury-riddled season, the Vanderbilt Commodores enter the 2020-21 season with a deep roster with a balance of youth and experience. 

Last year’s stars Aaron Nesmith and Saben Lee have departed from West End, but the Commodores return four starters from Stackhouse’s first season. And with an influx of talent via the transfer market and Stackhouse’s first full recruiting cycle in the books, there are plenty of exciting talents ready to continue bringing the magic back to Memorial Gymnasium. Before the season gets underway, The Hustler Sports Staff provides a detailed breakdown of each and every player on this year’s roster:

Tyrin Lawrence (#0), Guard

The freshman can create his own shots from anywhere on the court. He had over 1,500 points in his high school career, split between Morgan County High School in Georgia and Sunrise Christian Academy in Kansas. Lawrence averaged 13 points, five assists and four rebounds per game last year at Sunrise Christian. He committed to Vanderbilt in April 2020 over offers from Gonzaga, Ole Miss and Cal, among others. Senior guard Max Evans is a great role model for Lawrence to learn from this season, and if Lawrence can pick up the nuances of Stackhouse’s system from Evans this year, he could make a big impact next season.

Betsy Goodfriend, Deputy Sports Editor

Dylan Disu (#1), Forward

Dylan Disu made an immediate impact for Vanderbilt as a freshman, making 32 appearances and starting in all but one of those games. He averaged 7.4 points per game along with a team-high 5.4 rebounds. Disu also recorded five double-doubles, two of which came against Kentucky. As the guy with probably the highest upside and NBA potential, Disu should make another jump in his sophomore season, especially in regards to his three-point shooting. He will most likely start at the four spot, where he can stretch the floor and wreak havoc defensively with his ability to protect the paint and block shots. Expect Disu to be a consistent double-digit scorer and be one of the team’s leading rebounders again. 

Alyssa Muir, Deputy Sports Editor

Scotty Pippen Jr. (#2), Guard

As the son of former NBA legend Scottie Pippen, Scotty Pippen Jr. began his career at Vanderbilt with lofty expectations. Not only did he deliver on those expectations, but he is one of the main reasons why Commodore fans should be excited for year two under head coach Jerry Stackhouse. Pippen Jr. started every game but one last season and was the floor general behind Stackhouse’s complex, NBA-style offense. He racked up 3.6 assists per game and finished ninth in the SEC in total assists with 114. He scored in double figures in 25 contests and finished the season strong, averaging 17 points per game while shooting 47% from three point range in Vanderbilt’s final six games. Following his stellar first season on West End, Pippen Jr. became the first Commodore since Riley LaChance and Wade Baldwin IV in 2015 to earn All-SEC Freshman honors. Pippen Jr. will no doubt start every contest this season, and with the added playmaking presence of DJ Harvey, will be asked to play off the ball more, a role that figures to generate more three-point shots for him. 

Justin Hershey, Lead Sports Analyst

Maxwell Evans (#3), Guard

Max Evans enters his final season at Vanderbilt off of a breakout 2019-2020 campaign. He has long been considered the Commodores’ best defensive player, but what set him apart last season was his growth on the offensive side of the ball. In 32 appearances, Evans averaged over eight points per game, a five point increase from his previous two seasons, and shot nearly five three pointers per game at a respectable 33% clip. He registered 11 double-digit scoring performances, none more memorable than his career-high 31 points in the Commodores’ signature victory over the LSU Tigers in early February. As a starter of 47 games in the Black and Gold, Evans enters his senior season looking to leave West End on a high note. He will most likely start every single game for Stackhouse and will continue to be a dominant force on the defensive end of the floor while providing spacing and spark-plug scoring on the offensive end. 

Justin Hershey, Lead Sports Analyst

Jordan Wright (#4), Guard/Forward

Jordan Wright didn’t quite get as much playing time last year as his fellow freshmen teammates Scotty Pippen Jr. and Dylan Disu did, but he still saw plenty of action, especially in the last month of the season. Wright averaged 5.7 points and 2.8 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per game. His most impressive performance came against Tennessee, where he poured in a team-high 23 points on 8 of 14 shooting. He showcased an impressive ability to use his strength and get to the rim last year and also proved to be a tough, reliable defender. However, he shot just 15.09 percent from deep and needs to improve upon that to become a more well-rounded offensive player. As a sophomore this season, Wright will be expected to be an important spark-plug off the bench on both sides of the ball. 

Alyssa Muir, Deputy Sports Editor

DJ Harvey (#5), Guard

With the departure of two high-caliber scorers in Aaron Nesmith and Saben Lee, Vanderbilt figures to rely on DJ Harvey heavily this season. Harvey, a 6-foot-6 guard (at least, Vanderbilt lists him as a guard) from Bowie, Maryland, transferred from Notre Dame shortly after Stackhouse’s hiring in May of 2019. After taking a redshirt year due to NCAA transfer regulations, he brings to Vanderbilt a knack for scoring. While his three-point percentage hovered just around 30 in his final season at Notre Dame, Harvey did show flashes of solid marksmanship, scoring three-plus trey balls in five games his sophomore year. Ultimately, the bulk of his scoring comes in the paint—he averaged 10.7 points per game in 2018-19, while shooting 39 percent from the field. Harvey happens to be a great rebounding guard, too, averaging 4.2 boards per game in 2018-19 with multiple eight-rebound games in two years for the Fighting Irish. Look for Vanderbilt to give Harvey the reins to its offense this season.

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

Myles Stute (#10), Forward

Myles Stute, the first high school commit of the Jerry Stackhouse era, projects to be further down the bench in his true freshman season. That’s not to say the three-star recruit out of Washington D.C. isn’t talented; he’s just a young forward that spent most of his prep career at the four, while Stackhouse hopes to use him at the wing. The 6-foot-seven, 215-pound forward possesses a well-balanced skillset as a rebounder, scorer and defender and should help provide the Commodores with much-needed depth at forward. 

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

Braelee Albert (#11), Guard/Forward

As a somewhat surprising contributor last season, Braelee Albert returns for his sophomore season as a walk-on. He joined Stackhouse’s team in the spring semester after previously committing to play at Brown University and used his strong build to be a defensive asset for the Commodores. With a versatile body, Albert can play guard or forward and knows his role quite well. He was a vocal, high energy presence on the floor for Vanderbilt last season and was always willing to set screens and take charges. He appeared in 20 games while starting six and, according to Stackhouse, is currently very much in the team’s rotation.

Justin Hershey, Lead Sports Analyst

Trey Thomas (#12), Guard

In need of a second point guard on the roster, Jerry Stackhouse signed Trey Thomas on July 20, 2020. Despite being a late signee, it appears that Thomas has a strong hold on the backup point guard spot. In his Nov. 13 media session, Stackhouse called Thomas “one of the best shooters on the team” and commended him for his toughness. Thomas is listed at just 5-foot-11, but his size didn’t stop him from having an illustrious high school career at Crestwood Prep in Ontario, Canada. As a senior, he averaged 24.2 points per game, 5.9 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 3.9 steals. Pippen Jr. will play heavy minutes as the lead guard this season, but he was prone to foul trouble, so Thomas will definitely get his chances to make an impact as a floor general and outside threat. 

Alyssa Muir, Deputy Sports Editor

Issac McBride (#13), Guard

Issac McBride is one of the more intriguing names on this list. A native of Little Rock, Arkansas, McBride committed to Kansas as a three-star guard only to transfer before the season began. Per NCAA transfer regulations, he was slated to sit out this season, but recently received a waiver allowing him to play. While slightly undersized at 6-foot-1, 170 pounds, McBride appears to be a great catch-and-shoot threat; he thrived at Baptist Prep, averaging 28.9 points per game his senior year, with three-point shooting being his strength. McBride is still a redshirt freshman and doesn’t project to be a starting guard, especially with the returning talent in Vanderbilt’s backfield. But with his ability to stretch the floor, he could provide a change-of-pace scoring option off the bench.

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

Isaiah Rice (#14), Guard

One would expect not to see much of Isaiah Rice, the walk-on from Indianapolis, this coming season. But we said the same thing last season; we couldn’t have been more wrong. In Stackhouse’s first year at the helm, the Commodores were depleted by injuries, forcing him to play walk-ons routinely. Rice played in 15 games in 2019-20, more than double his total from his first two seasons on West End. Still, with the Commodores continuing to build depth, it seems unlikely that 5-foot-11 walk-on will log much playing time, although Stackhouse has shown he has no problem playing walk-ons.

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

Clevon Brown (#15), Forward

After going down with a season-ending knee injury just nine games into last year, Clevon Brown is back as a fifth-year senior. Before his injury, Brown was Vanderbilt’s starting center, averaging nine points and six rebounds a game. He also provided a strong interior presence on the defensive end, collecting 18 blocks. Stackhouse has mentioned the possibility of using Brown as more of a four to go along with Quentin Millora-Brown at center this season. This would be a brand new position for Brown, but it would provide a ton of size down low for a Commodore team that often didn’t have that option last season. Albeit with a small sample size, Brown shot 38.46 percent from deep last year, a good sign for his ability to successfully stretch the floor at either the four or five. With 107 career starts under his belt, Brown will bring an important veteran presence to Vanderbilt’s relatively young roster. 

Alyssa Muir, Deputy Sports Editor

Max Adelman (#20), Guard/Forward

The freshman from Memphis is a physical playmaker on both ends of the court. He can play either guard or forward, and has advantages over most players at either position. He’s quicker on the fast break than most forwards but is able to come down with more rebounds than a typical guard could. Adelman was a late addition to the 2020 signing class, but his motor is something Stackhouse will appreciate in practice and off the bench.

Betsy Goodfriend, Deputy Sports Editor

Drew Weikert (#33), Guard

Following in the footsteps of his father who played at Vanderbilt from 1979-1983, Drew Weikert has emerged as a valuable walk-on for coach Stackhouse’s team. After playing one year at Centre College (Division III), he quickly made a name for himself as not only the distant cousin of Larry Bird, but as someone not afraid of the bright lights. His heroic strip-and-score of potential number one overall draft pick Anthony Edwards last season was one of the highlights of the year for Vanderbilt. Weikert is an elite shooter who Stackhouse has spoken adamantly about in the preseason. Do not be surprised if he cracks the rotation when the Commodores are in need of a quick three pointer.

Justin Hershey, Lead Sports Analyst

Akeem Odusipe (#34), Forward

Akeem Odusipe comes to Nashville via Catholic High School in Knoxville and will be a long-term asset for Coach Stackhouse. The explosive 6’9” center is a dynamic blend of athleticism and ability with a pedigree for winning. At Catholic, he registered more than 1,200 points and 900 rebounds in his four-year career. As a talented shot blocker and dunker, it will not be long before Odusipe is making highlight plays in the Black and Gold. Stackhouse has indicated that he would have been a redshirt candidate but for the NCAA granting all players an extra season, so expect Odusipe to mainly focus on development this season.

Justin Hershey, Lead Sports Analyst

Quentin Millora-Brown (#42), Forward

Quentin Millora-Brown, a transfer from Rice University, is finally eligible for the Commodores after taking a redshirt year last season. While Rice is far from a basketball powerhouse, Millora-Brown displayed a well-rounded, efficient game in 2018-19; he logged 23.3 minutes per game for the Owls and tallied roughly seven points, six rebounds and just north of one block per game. Given the high praise he’s received from Stackhouse, Millora-Brown is a player to watch for this season—Stackhouse has commended him as a skilled offensive player with an excellent defensive and rebounding presenceAt 6-foot-10, 229 pounds, Millora-Brown provides Vanderbilt with much-needed depth at center. He’ll figure to mix in with Ejike Obinna and Clevon Brown, but under Stackhouse’s tutelage, he could very well pass Obinna in the depth chart. 

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

Ejike Obinna (#50), Forward/Center

Ejike was a part-time starter last season after redshirting two years ago. He averaged 3.8 points and 4.3 rebounds in 18.2 minutes per game. Obinna started playing basketball his freshman year of high school at Virginia Academy, but in his fourth season at Vanderbilt, he’s ready for a breakthrough. He’ll compete with fifth-year senior Clevon Brown, who is back after suffering a season-ending knee injury last year; Quentin Millora-Brown, who is eligible this season after sitting out last year due to NCAA transfer rules; and freshman Akeem Odusipe for playing time as a big man. Obinna has an advantage of being a solid offensive rebounder, but he’ll need to be a more consistent scoring threat down low to carve out a major role this season.

Betsy Goodfriend, Deputy Sports Editor