Vanderbilt shooting guard John Jenkins was named the Southeastern Conference’s player of the week Monday.
The 6-foot-4 sophomore from Hendersonville scored a career-high 32 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the field, including 6-of-10 from 3-point range in Saturday's 81-77 victory over Kentucky. He also was 4-of-5 from the free-throw line, had three assists, three rebounds and one steal.
His 32 points was the most for a Vanderbilt player against Kentucky since Mike Rhodes had 34 on Jan. 19, 1980. It was also the first 30-point game for a Commodore since A.J. Ogilvy scored 33 two years ago.
Jenkins’ career day came less than 40 hours after he scored 20 points in an 81-77 victory over Alabama on Thursday night. The Station Camp grad has scored 20 or more points 14 times this season and leads the SEC in scoring with 19.8 points a game.
His stellar week most likely strengthened his case for SEC player of the year and could have thrust him into the national spotlight. It was his second SEC weekly honor this season.
Both games were nationally televised and he was nominated for the Capital One Cup Impact Performance of the Week. The top four men’s basketball clutch performances are chosen and are featured on ESPN and ESPN.com and the winner is determined by fan vote.
But Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings wouldn’t say if he thought Jenkins was emerging as a national star.
“I'll let the media worry about that. He will still get yelled at in practice Monday,” Stallings quipped after Saturday’s game. “He’s a great team guy. He runs around and shoots and he does his best on defense. That's what makes his success fun to watch. ... He's a great teammate and a great kid.”
• VU moves up; Belmont still receiving votes: Vanderbilt moved up five spots in the Associated Press top 25 poll to No. 18. The Commodores (18-6, 6-4 SEC) also went from No. 24 to No. 18 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll.
Belmont once again received five votes in the AP Poll. This is the fifth straight week the Bruins (23-4, 15-1 Atlantic Sun) has received votes in either the AP or ESPN/USA Today poll.