by Barca Blog - While inclement weather wreaked havoc on both team's inside Tiger Stadium Saturday night, lack of execution ultimately doomed Vanderbilt's upset bid of No. 9 LSU.
Each error -- from costly penalties, to dropped balls, to fumbled snaps, to subpar special teams play, to not converting 3rd downs while giving up key ones -- factored into the 23-9 loss and proved to be too much to overcome.
"There’s no excuse for the way we played," quarterback Larry Smith said when asked about the sloppy conditions. “We did a poor job of executing. We had several opportunities to get back in the game but we just failed to."
"Overall, it wasn't any one thing or any one person," head coach Bobby Johnson stated, "but just some opportunities that we didn't take advantage of. It seemed like so many little things happened that went against us, or things that we could have done better to give us a better chance to win the game."
The Commodores were penalized 7 times for 52 yards highlighted by two 15-yard facemask calls on the Tigers' first touchdown drive. On third-down conversions, Vanderbilt was just 4-of-15 partly due to a couple of dropped passes that would have moved the chains. On the other hand, LSU was 9-of-17 in those situations.
“We really shot ourselves in the foot," defensive end Broderick Stewart said. "I remember at least two or three third-and-longs where we had a chance to get them off the field. The two facemask penalties hurt us... You can’t have penalties when you play a good team.”
"It's frustrating," tailback Zac Stacy added. "I think we should have come out with a win. It just goes back to not executing plays. Emotionally and mentally it was a heartbreaker... but you can’t take anything away from LSU. They're a very good football team and really athletic on defense.”