Monday, August 31, 2009

Myron gets a "Herbie"

by Barca Blog - Add a Herbie Award to the list of preseason accolades for Vanderbilt's Myron Lewis.

In his ninth annual Herbie Awards released earlier today, ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit recognized Lewis as the fourth best cornerback in the nation. Herbstreit's list had three of the top four corners coming from the SEC:

1. Joe Haden, Florida
2. Syd'Quan Thompson, California
3. Trevard Lindley, Kentucky
4. Myron Lewis, Vanderbilt
5. Alterraun Verner, UCLA
6. Patrick Peterson, LSU

Thanks to Lacey for sending the link.

Press conference recap

by Barca Blog - We've got you covered with all the news from today's press conference at the McGugin Center. Check out video interviews with Coach Johnson, Patrick Benoist and Ryan Hamilton as well as a story on Larry Smith being named the starter against Western Carolina.

And don't forget, there will be a Black and Gold Out Saturday in support of National College Colors Weekend. Find out which color you should wear to the game by clicking here. Make sure you spread the word to family and friends!

Larry Smith will start Saturday

by Barca Blog - Breaking News.... Head coach Bobby Johnson just announced that sophomore quarterback Larry Smith will get the start for the Commodores in Saturday's opener against Western Carolina. We will have a full recap of Johnson's press conference later today on

Week 1 game notes and depth chart

by Barca Blog - Hot off the press.. I just posted Vanderbilt's Week 1 game notes and depth chart on VUcommodores' Gameday Central page. Go here and look at the drop down menu underneath the Star logo.

And in case you were wondering... there's no new information on who the starting quarterback will be for Saturday's tilt with Western Carolina. The depth chart has Mackenzi Adams or Larry Smith listed at that position.

2009 Football Gameday Central

by Barca Blog - I hope you've enjoyed our news coverage on VUcommodores' Preseason Central site during the month of August. Since it's game week (finally!), we have switched over to our Gameday Central page. This will be the place to get the latest information each week during the season. Bookmark this page!

Rice game time

by Barca Blog - FYI... Vanderbilt's football game at Rice on September 26 will start at 7 p.m. CT. The contest will be televised by CSS.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

2008 Rewind: No pressure

by Barca Blog - If you made your first career start in Vanderbilt's biggest game in decades, you'd feel the pressure, right?

That wasn't the case for quarterback Larry Smith.

"I was surprised that I wasn't really nervous," he admitted.

On his very first play from scrimmage in the Music City Bowl, Smith set the tone by connecting with senior receiver Sean Walker down the sidelines for a 51-yard gain.

"After that, I just settled down and played my game," Smith added.

Smith, who rotated with senior Chris Nickson, completed 10-of-17 passes for 121 yards and also rushed for 25 yards in the Commodores' 16-14 victory over Boston College.

Watch our latest 2008 Rewind video below.

Football reminders

by Barca Blog - I thought I'd post a couple of notes as we prepare for Vanderbilt's season opener Saturday against Western Carolina.

SUNDAY: The Bobby Johnson Call-In Show, presented by Martin and Zerfoss Insurance and Auto-Owners Insurance, will premier at 6:30 p.m. CT inside the Holiday Inn Vanderbilt. Fans in attendance will be treated to free appetizers. For out-of-towners, the show can be heard live on Click Here

MONDAY: Coach Johnson will field questions from the press about the matchup with the Catamounts. We will webcast the event live starting at noon CT on

TUESDAY: Vanderbilt will make all SEC single game tickets available for purchase. Please note that a discounted $35 single-game ticket will be the sold to Mississippi State game on Sept. 19 with the donation of a can of food. Click Here

(and don't forget... season tickets remain available starting at $109)

Friday, August 28, 2009

Baseball roster and injury update

by SID - As Young Travis mentioned earlier the baseball roster has been updated following the start of school.

One significant injury note is the loss of junior pitcher Mark Lamm due to Tommy John surgery on his right arm. Lamm, or "Cowboy" as he is known on the team, suffered the injury over the summer while playing for Danville in the Prospect League. He should receive a medical redshirt and rehab this season.

Some of the weights have changed for the guys and will be updated by the end of the weekend. Fall practice starts September 22 and culminates with the annual Black and Gold series October 15, 16 and 18.

Upson paints Camp Thunder

by Barca Blog - During his summer break, Brett Upson returned to Camp Thunder, his childhood Boy Scout camp, for a bite to eat. Little did he know that he’d be painting the 8,000-square foot dining hall a week later.

It all began when the Commodores’ senior punter asked if he could assist with any projects while touring the recently renovated facility near his hometown of Griffin, Ga.

Like any good scout, Upson followed through with his offer.

“I’m not certain that painting the entire dining hall was quite what Brett had in mind when he volunteered to help out,” said Chuck Brasfeild, Scout Executive from Boy Scouts of America. “But he didn’t flinch at the prospect. He worked with a smile on his face, and a bit of green paint.”

With some help, Upson went to work on a project that would have cost the camp more than $10,000. He handled the painting of everything over eight feet using both a scissor lift and ladder. Ten hours later, the task was complete.

For the Music City Bowl MVP and Eagle Scout, it was all in a days work.

“Brett models the Scout oath, ‘Help other people at all times,’ and the Scout slogan, ‘Do a good turn daily,’” Brasfeild added. “Here in Griffin, we appreciate his volunteerism and his big heart.”

2010 Baseball Roster

By Travis Young - The 2010 baseball roster has been posted online... Click here to view it. The Commodores will start fall workouts on Monday, August 31.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Next Ask A Dore: Broderick Stewart

by Barca Blog - Broderick Stewart, a senior defensive end from Newnan, Ga,, will be the next guest in our weekly Ask A Dore segment. Make sure you get your questions in by Monday, August 31... click here.

We will post Larry Smith's answers in the next few days on You can listen to previous interviews in our AAD archive.

2008 Rewind: Hawkins won't be stopped

by Barca Blog - Vanderbilt had the chance to make an early season statement in 2008 when No. 24 South Carolina rolled in to town for a nationally televised Thursday night contest on ESPN.

We now know the final outcome of the game, but there were two plays that I'll always remember.

With Vanderbilt looking to add to its 17-10 lead in the fourth quarter, tailback Jared Hawkins rushed for eight yards into the Gamecocks' red zone. It seemed like a normal play, but during the tackle, Hawkins fell into the legs of one of his blockers, wide receiver Chris Reinert.

Reinert was down for a extended period of time as the sold-out crowd sat in silence. With spirits low as he was taken off the field with a broken leg, Reinert created an eruption in the stadium by waving his arms in support of his teammates.

Following the emotional moment, Hawkins took the next snap to the house for 13-yards, avoiding four different Gamecock tacklers on his way to the end zone. The reaction of the crowd after the score was one of those moments you wish you could bottle forever.

VU held off USC for a 24-17 victory to move to 2-0 on the season. Watch Hawkins talk about his TD run below:

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Kicking it off right

by Barca Blog - Make sure you check out Steve Green's photos from Tuesday night's Kickoff Picnic hosted by the National Commodore Club.

(View Pictures)

We had a great turn out with around 300 people in attendance. Fans were greeted with a meal by Golden Rule BBQ, plus plenty of pep courtesy of the Spirit of Gold and Vanderbilt cheerleading squad.

Coaches and staff from most sports were on hand to discuss the upcoming athletic year while also reflecting on last year's success stories. Bobby Johnson and co-captain Bradley Vierling addressed the crowd, as well as Vice Chancellor David Williams and Joe Fisher.

You could tell everyone at the event was ready for the season to get underway.

As Vierling put it, "We're tired of hitting each other at practice, and ready to hit someone else."

Video of the Day - Follow me

by Barca Blog - I haven't posted a video of the day for awhile... but got a kick out of this one, so I thought it was worth sharing.

As you know... Ryan Seacrest is taking over the world one day at a time.

First, he signs a three-year, $45 million contract to return to American Idol... all but signaling the end for Paula Abdul (she was upset about her cohorts getting bigger raises).

Now, he won't even give Ben Stiller the time of day. Not even on Twitter.

Watch this clip from Stiller's new Red Hour channel on YouTube.

Oh, MTK.

Always a Commodore

by Barca Blog - Thanks to the Washington Redskins for sending us this picture of former Commodore Todd Yoder.

Yoder, who is entering his 10th season as a tight end in the NFL, recently showed off his Vanderbilt threads during an alma mater photo shoot for the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation’s 4th & Life program.

(Photo courtesy of Rafael Suanes)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Football construction update

by Barca Blog - As I promised on Sunday... here are some updated photos of the football stadium renovations courtesy of John Russell.

Phase 2 is almost complete with kickoff only 11 days away. You'll notice black and gold pavers in the shape of the Star V logo have been added into the plaza areas as well as your personalized bricks. Also, benches and light posts surround the entrances with plants placed around the exterior walls. And check out the Star V over the tunnel at Star Walk. I've been told it will light up for night games.

Click Here to view Russell's photo gallery.

If you'd like to support Vanderbilt's facility upgrades, please contact the National Commodore Club at (615) 322-4114.

Gatewood signs with Eagles

By Barca Blog - Linebacker Curtis Gatewood signed with Philadelphia Tuesday, joining former Commodore teammate Reshard Langford at the Eagles' preseason camp.

Gatewood played in six games for the Kansas City Chiefs as a rookie last season, registering four tackles on special teams.

With less than two weeks until final cuts, both Gatewood and Langford will be battling to make the squad. NFL rosters will be trimmed from 80 to 75 on September 1 with the last cutdown to 53 on September 5.

August Student-Athletes of the Month

by Barca Blog - Congratulations to Brooke Goodwin (Women's Golf) and Jared Hawkins (Football), Student-Athletes of the Month for August.

They were chosen on the basis of the all-around student-athlete... effort and excellence in academics, leadership, integrity, dedication to team, campus involvement, community service and the ability to serve as role models for current and future Vanderbilt students and student-athletes.

Click here to read Q&A's with the two honorees.

SEC Weekly debuts on ESPNU Thursday

From - On Thursday, August 27, ESPNU will debut its new studio show SEC Weekly.

The one-hour program will air Thursdays at 3:30 p.m. CT throughout the academic year and will cover SEC sports, including sport-by-sport previews, reviews, specials and features on student-athletes.

Click Here to read more.

FoxSports' Jeff Goodman talks Commodores

By A. Boggs - college basketball writer Jeff Goodman has written a nice blog entry on Coach Stallings and the Commodores' prospects for the 2009-10 season.

Check out the blog here.

Monday, August 24, 2009

2008 Rewind: Marve saves the day

by Barca Blog - Of all the great moments in 2008, Chris Marve's goal-line strip at Ole Miss might have been the biggest play of the regular season.

With Vanderbilt clinging onto a 20-17 lead late in the fourth quarter, the Rebels drove 80 yards in five plays highlighted by Dexter McCluster's 56 yard reception to the Commodores' 7-yard line. On the very next play, McCluster took a direct snap up the middle for what looked to be the go-ahead score... but Marve saved the day by forcing McCluster to fumble into the end zone.

"I knew he had a chance of crossing the goal line, so I just went for the strip," Marve recalled. "God-willing, it came out."

I remember standing in the opposite end zone during that drive with that uneasy feeling in my stomach, not knowing if the 'Dores would extend their record to 4-0. Marve's heroics cemented the fact that it was going to be a special season.

"I felt that a play needed to be made," Marve added. "I saw the opportunity, so I went for it."

I think we're all happy he did.

The Commodores would tack on a field goal to win the game, 23-17. Watch the clip below:

Ogilvy selected to Australian Oceania Championship team

By A. Boggs - Vanderbilt junior center A.J. Ogilvy has been selected to participate in the 2009 FIBA Oceanic Championships against New Zealand - a two-game series which begins Sunday in Sydney and concludes on Tuesday in New Zealand.

Ogilvy will participate in the tournament with some prominent Australian basketball stars - including Dallas Mavericks' forward Nathan Jawai and Beijing Olympians Brad Newley, Mark Worthington and Joe Ingles.

Get more information on A.J. and the Boomers' team here.

Jamie Graham answers your questions

by Barca Blog - I posted my Ask A Dore interview with sophomore defensive back and Nashville native Jamie Graham late last night.

I think you will enjoy Jamie's responses to a variety of topics like.. another sport he'd consider playing (and one he's not good at)... the fastest Commodore (and his nickname), his preseason competition with the other cornerbacks, the best place to eat in Nashville, growing up with Golden Tate, his secret signal to fans, which player has the most swag, and much more.

I switched the format to a podcast, so you could hear the reaction from our guests in their voice. When you have 15 minutes check it out... or let it play in the background while you chip away at your dreaded Monday work list.

Thanks to everyone for submitting their questions... and don't forget, today's the last day to get your questions in for quarterback Larry Smith. Click Here

Photo by John Russell

Sunday, August 23, 2009

When I grow up...

by Barca Blog - When I was young, field trips consisted of going to the museum or seeing the symphony. Let's just say those experiences weren't my cup of tea.

Last Thursday, though, 7- and 8-year-old boys from the Brentwood Blaze were treated to an excursion of a lifetime... a behind-the-scenes look at the Commodores. The youth football team was taken on a tour of the locker room, the weight room, the film room and even got to watch Vanderbilt's practice session. Afterwards, Coach Johnson and the rest of the team gave the wide-eyed kids high fives as they left the field.

You can check out exclusive photos at Brentwood Home page, click here.

Star search

by Barca Blog - A little paint can go a long way.

While the most visible upgrades to Vanderbilt stadium can be seen at the entrances, touch up work has also been done to other areas of the venue.

Here's a photo of the changes to the inside of the football tunnel in the south end zone. Gone- the old Vanderbilt V logos with script after a new coat of paint on the walls. Added- a couple of the Commodores official logo, the Star V.

Check back this week for some updated photos of the renovations at Gate 2 and Gate 3 of the stadium.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Commodores get AP Top 25 consideration

by Leathers - When your team captures a bowl victory, finishes with a winning record and returns a bunch of starters, folks will take notice. Even writers voting in the Associated Press preseason Top 25 poll.

The Commodores received three votes in the first AP Top 25 ballot, announced Saturday morning. They were one of 10 Southeastern Conference teams to garner consideration by the writers.

College football writer Jon Wilner of the San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News had Vanderbilt No. 23 in his preseason ballot. He also included five other SEC teams in the Top 25.

Wilner also appears to be a big fan of Vanderbilt’s head coach. Here’s his explanation:

23. Vanderbilt: The schedule’s tough (LSU, Mississippi and Georgia Tech plus the SEC East). But the Commodores have almost everyone back and one of the top coaches in the country in Bobby Johnson.

Friday, August 21, 2009

When in Rome...

by Barca Blog - Mike Minor was impressive in his professional debut for the Rome Braves Thursday, throwing two perfect innings in a limited start against the Charleston Riverdogs.

Atlanta's first round pick talked about his performance with Carroll Rogers' of The Atlanta Journal Constitution.

“My curveball was a little off, my change-up was off,” said Minor, who was coming off an 81-day layoff since his last game as a Commodore. “It’s usually my best pitch. Didn’t really get it over for strikes today. At first I thought two innings or 30 pitches would be all right, just to get my feet wet. But once I got out there, I didn’t want to stop.”

Read the complete story... click here.

(Photo credit: Hyosub Shin /

Next Ask A Dore: Larry Smith

by Barca Blog - The redshirt sophomore quarterback from Prattvile, Ala., will be our next guest in our weekly Ask A Dore segment on Make sure you get your questions in by Monday, August 24... click here.

I spent 15 minutes with sophomore defensive back Jamie Graham yesterday and he was gracious enough to answer a bunch of the questions you submitted last week. You won't want to miss what he said. I'll post the interview in the next few days... and it will probably change to an audio format so you can get a better feel for the actual responses. Sometimes text just doesn't do it justice.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Recap: McGugin All-Star Softball Game

By TY – In front of a standing room only crowd with temperatures flirting in the low 90s, Team Gold dominated Team Black, 7-2, in the first annual McGugin All-Star Softball Game Wednesday at Hawkins Field.

The squads were comprised of coaches and staff from Vanderbilt Athletics. Team Gold (TG) was managed by assistant women’s basketball coach Vicky Picott while head women’s golf coach Greg Allen managed Team Black (TB).

After surveying the media after the game, the following awards were given out:

Best Pitching Performance: John Peach (Compliance Coordinator, TG) stifled the bats of Team Black, throwing a complete game and only allowing six hits and two runs to pick up the win.

Best Play: Patricia Marett (Associate Vice Chancellor & Chief of Staff) set the tone for Team Gold by flashing a “web gem” in left field in the top of the first, stranding two runners on base.

Billy Martin Award: With Team Black mounting a rally, crew chief umpire David Williams II (Vice Chancellor of Student Athletics) called interference on Travis Young (the intern, TB) for not avoiding a double-play opportunity on ground ball hit to third base. Allen was than called out at first base as well and that’s when fireworks went off.

Following the scene of events, Allen turned his hat backwards and sprinted to argue face-to-face with the crew chief in front of home plate causing a loud stir among the crowd of 3,700. Seconds later Allen found himself tossed from the game and than on his way back to dugout, he threw gloves, bats and whatever he could find onto the field.

Rawlings Gold Glove: John Williamson (Head women’s bowling coach, TG) made 19 of the team’s 27 put-outs, including the last nine

Charlie Hawkins Sportsmanship Award: Team Black (Allen became the first coach ever doused by Gatorade after a loss)

Best Attitude: Thomas Samuel (Communications, TB) retaliating against his sidekick Brandon Barca (TG) by tackling him to the ground in the first baseline

Hardest Worker: Eric Jones (Ticket Manager, TG) was the only one that wore batting gloves and eye black but he showed he was versatile behind the plate. And kudos to him for setting up the event.

I'll leave you with some of Barca's pictures from the event (click to make bigger):

More on Internet streaming

By A. Boggs - Just got this update from the SEC on Internet streaming for games as a part of the new television contract with ESPN and CBS. I wrote a blog on this a few weeks ago that summarizes where you can catch the Commodores this year (link here). It looks like the only change is that games televised on ESPNU will not be streamed on ESPN360 or will be available on the network's GamePlan package.

Here's what we received from the SEC:

All games will be available live online except the ESPNU games. You must have that channel on your TV to view those games.
CBS – will be streamed on
ESPN, ESPN2 – will be streamed on ESPN360
ESPNU – will not be streamed on ESPN360 and will not be available on GamePlan
SEC Network - will be streamed on ESPN360 and be available on GamePlan (with no blackout restrictions)
CSS – will be streamed on ESPN360 and be available on GamePlan (with no blackout restrictions)
FSN - will be streamed on ESPN360 and be available on GamePlan (blackout restrictions apply within SEC territory)

At 11:30 p.m. CT on the day of the games, the complete TV feed (without commercials) will be available free of charge for viewing at the SEC Digital Network (

There will however be a fee if a fan wants to download the game to their computer/phone/etc. or order a DVD copy. (For the late games, they may not be up at 11:30 p.m. CT but will be available as soon as they are digitized.)

Reeves looking to build off strong finish

by Barca Blog - Known as a guy that always gives maximum effort on the practice field, junior tailback Kennard Reeves finally got his first taste of significant playing time in the Commodores' final two games last season.

Reeves took advantage of the opportunity, giving him a confidence boost for 2009.

"The biggest thing I needed to get last year was game experience," said Reeves, who had a career-high six carries for 34 yards against Wake Forest. "Everyone was saying I was doing well in practice, but I needed that quality game experience. I hope to come in this year and build on that."

The Duluth, Ga., native is one of several players in the Commodore backfield competing for carries this fall. With Jared Hawkins sidelined during the first week of camp, and press clippings focused on the talented freshmen trio of Warren Norman, Zac Stacy and Wesley Tate, head coach Bobby Johnson reminded us not to forget about other veterans fighting for playing time.

"We’re not giving up on Kennard or Gaston (Miller)," Johnson stated. "Kennard had a great run during our scrimmage (on Saturday) where he broke about five tackles.

"There’s still a lot of evaluation to go. We want everybody to continue to work hard. Unless you continue to work hard, someone is going to pass you. That’s a great situation for us."

Although time will tell how the logjam at tailback unfolds, Reeves is making his case during camp. He's quietly exploded for several big runs while also showing improvement in pass blocking drills. With competition at an all-time high, he seems poised for the challenge.

"Naturally everyone wants to play," Reeves said, "and we know with our offense that there is going to be room for possibly up to four running backs play in a game. So, we're all vying for position right now. It's not bad blood competition though, we're all trying to encourage each other and we want everyone to do well."

You can read my full Q&A with Kennard by clicking here.

Vanderbilt University earns best-ever overall ranking

From Vanderbilt News Services...

Vanderbilt University had its best-ever overall ranking in the history of the U.S. News & World Report survey in rankings released Thursday by the magazine. Vanderbilt was ranked No. 17 in the list of best national universities, tied with Emory and Rice universities. Read More

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A.J. Ogilvy named to Wooden Award Top 50 preseason watch list

By A. Boggs - Junior A.J. Ogilvy was named as one of 50 members of the John Wooden Award preseason watch list in an announcement made today.

Ogilvy is the first Commodore player to be on the preseason watch list for the prestigious award since Shan Foster in the fall of 2007.

Oklahoma's Blake Griffin claimed the honor in the spring of 2009.

Washing away the past

by Barca Blog - Alex Washington's first few years at Vanderbilt haven't turned out the way he expected them to, but that doesn't mean the senior wideout can't write a new chapter to his career in his fifth and final season.

The Stone Mountain, Ga., native came into the program with high expectations, but his impact on the gridiron has been minimal due to injury. He enters the season with 13 career receptions, as well as contributing on kickoff and punt returns.

"I feel like since I've been here, I've done a few things on the field, but haven't really stepped into a position of somebody you can count on to make a play," Washington admitted. "I really want to do that before I leave."

Washington will be expected to step up and provide leadership for a young, inexperienced receiving corps. In 2008, he was hampered by a serious knee injury which limited him to one catch in seven games. He says he's 100 percent healthy now and ready to prove he can be a weapon on offense.

"I want to show people that I can play," Washington added. "I also want to be a leader for the younger receivers. I just want to make plays, come off this ACL strong, and show people that I can do some good things for the Commodores."

Read our Ask A Dore Q&A with Alex Washington here.

Another upgrade to

by Barca Blog - I thought I'd mention another new upgrade to, the official site of Vanderbilt Athletics. From now on, each press release will have a tool at the top of the page that features several new options:

Sharing- Pass the news onto friends via Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Delicious, Yahoo, etc.

Font Size-
Is the font too small to read? Increase the size!

Send the update via email

Don't think I need to explain this one

Get access to the latest news feeds. One cool way to utilize this is through iGoogle.

Just look for these icons (below) at the top of every story on

The heat is on

by Barca Blog - Another two-a-day practice is taking place on the turf of the John Rich Practice Facility. Prior to the morning session, some of the D-line posed for a quick snapshop for the blog. Of course, the always reliable "Smo" went to his signature move, the left bicep flex.

These guys will be beasts in the trenches this year, especially with the amount of depth and talent available to shuffle in and out of games. The Commodores did suffer a big loss, though, when it was announced yesterday that Steven Stone will be sidelined with a foot fracture for approximately six weeks. I hope the senior end has a speedy and healthy recovery.

The team will have to go a combined 4+ hours in the heat today. As for me, I lasted about 20 minutes in the scorching 90 degree weather. I should have put in the hours during Coach Sisk's conditioning program this summer.

(Editor's note: Just found out the afternoon practice has been cancelled)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Fan Survey Coming Soon

by Rocket - Those of you holding season tickets for men's and/or women's basketball will very soon receive a brief but important electronic survey that will help Vanderbilt Athletics in several important ways.

This survey will only come to those of you that have shared your email address with our ticket office. It will take you 5-7 minutes to complete, all done on-line with an easy to use form. Everyone filling out the form will get a coupon for a free concession soft drink at a Memorial Gym counter along with the chance to win a grand prize that will be outlined in the survey.

If you have season tickets to both programs, please fill out the survey twice (that might seem like a waste of your time but it won't be) as we want to record your information and opinions into each separate fan base.

In October we'll poll our baseball season ticket holders and after the football season, those fans will get the survey.

Help us more clearly understand exactly who is putting the "magic" into Memorial Magic! The Commodores will appreciate your assistance.

All drafted signees will come to school

by SID - The deadline for major league baseball clubs to sign their drafted players has come and gone and all of the 2008-09 signees will be on campus at the end of month. In addition, Drew Hayes (22nd round- Seattle), did not sign and will return for his senior season.

The following is the list of signees who were drafted and should be in school in the next few weeks. Sam Selman (14th round- Los Angeles Angels), Regan Flaherty (28th- Seattle), Michael Yastrzemski (36th round- Boston) and Nathan Dorris (45th- Atlanta).

2008 Rewind: Hamilton picks off Rebels

by Barca Blog - We just released our second 2008 Rewind feature on

Vanderbilt's 3-0 start to the season was in jeopardy after a rocky start in Oxford, Miss. Ole Miss took a 10-0 lead after scoring on a field goal and a fumble recovery returned for a touchdown on consecutive possessions in the opening quarter.

Jared Hawkins then fumbled on the first play of the next series, putting Ole Miss at Vanderbilt's 20 yard line with a chance to deliver a knockout blow.

On the very next play, safety Ryan Hamilton stepped up and provided the next highlight... his first of three interceptions that resulted in him being named the Football Writers Association of America/Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week.

"I had the opportunity to just read off their quarterback's eyes," Hamilton recalled. "I saw what the receiver was doing and just made a great break on the ball and luckily I caught it.

"I felt that play helped everyone realize that the game could turn around at any second, and all we had to do was keep playing hard to set the offense up for good opportunities to score."

The rest is history as the 'Dores went on to win, 23-17.

2008 Rewind: Adams' risk pays off

by Barca Blog - In case you missed the first 2008 Rewind segment from last week, here it is.

With ESPN College Gameday on campus and the Commodore Nation abuzz, quarterback Mackenzi Adams came off the bench to rally No. 19 Vanderbilt past No. 13 Auburn 14-13 to improve to 5-0 for the first time since 1943.

Adams threw two touchdowns in the game, the second one serving as the following rewind clip. With the ball at the Tigers 1 and the 'Dores trailing 13-7, Adams ran a roll out play to the right and found his second option, tight end Brandon Barden, in the back of the end zone for the game-winner.

"Barden made some big plays during the season," Adams remembered. "He's a guy with some big play abilities, so when I saw him in the back of the end zone with his hands up, I went ahead and took that risk. It turned out good for us."

Monday, August 17, 2009

Jacobson traded to Orioles

By Travis Young - Former Vanderbilt pitcher Brett Jacobson has been traded to the Baltimore Orioles from the Detroit Tigers in exchange for infielder-outfielder Aubrey Huff.

Jacobson has appeared in 35 games with Class A Lakeland this season, posting a 1-3 record with a 3.74 ERA in addition to six saves and 44 strikeouts while Huff batted .253 with 24 doubles, 13 home runs and 72 RBI in 110 games with Baltimore this season.

MBB to appear on Super Tuesday twice

By A. Boggs - Commodores’ men’s basketball will be on center stage on ESPN’s Super Tuesday two times in 2009-10, once at home and once on the road. Vanderbilt will host Tennessee at 6 p.m. Central time on February 9th and travel to Florida for a 6 p.m. Central time tip against the Gators on the network’s final Super Tuesday broadcast of the season on March 2.

Action will tip off every Tuesday on ESPN at either 7 p.m. ET or 9 p.m. from January 12 to March 2 and feature the nation’s top teams in action. All games will be televised by and

Click here to read the entire SEC release and to get the complete Super Tuesday schedule.

Shaw's 60 leads to Top 10 finish

By Weinman - Vanderbilt Men's Golf Head Coach Tom Shaw had an impressive showing in the Capital City Invitational, held last week at McCabe Golf Course in Nashville. Shaw made headlines with an opening-round 60 on the north and middle nines at McCabe, carding 12 birdies against only two bogeys.

Shaw would finish in the Top 10 among the professionals at the 54-hole pro/am event. Earlier this summer, Shaw also had solid outings at the Tennessee State Open and advanced through a local qualifying event for the U.S. Open.

Send in your questions...

Joe Fisher's Mailbag
Email your preseason football question and Joe may answer it in his weekly feature.
Click Here

Ask A Dore
Guest: Jamie Graham
Send the defensive back your questions by Wednesday. Click Here

Catching up with Tim Fugger

by Barca Blog - I just posted my Q&A with Tim Fugger on The sophomore defensive end talks about a variety of topics including how he's the healthiest he's been since he came to Vanderbilt, plus who would win a race between him and Broderick Stewart. Click Here to read

Cotham signs with Yankees

By Travis Young - According to Baseball America, Caleb Cotham has agreed to terms with the New York Yankees. Cotham was a fifth-round selection (165th overall) by the Yankees in the 2009 draft back in June.

This past season, Cotham went 7-5 with a 4.10 ERA for the Commodores. The Mt. Juliet, Tenn. native struck out 84 in 79.0 innings while opponents hit only .222 off him.

Cotham went 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA in a short stint with the Brewster Whitecaps in the Cape Cod League this summer. The Commodore struck out 15 in 13 scoreless innings while making two starts.

Click here to view Baseball America's link of Cotham signing.

The deadline to sign with a Major League team is tonight at midnight.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Black & Gold Out on September 5

Spread the Word…

As part of National College Colors Weekend, we want you to show off your Black & Gold at the Commodores home opener against Western Carolina on September 5.

Take a look at the stadium map below (click image to make bigger). If your tickets are in one of the designated black sections (A-K), we want you to wear a black shirt to the game. If your tickets are in one of the gold sections (L-V), we need you to show your gold!

Make sure you check your tickets to find out which color you should wear to the game. Let’s have some fun and welcome the Music City Bowl champions with a stadium split with Black & Gold on September 5.

Don't forget, season tickets start at only $109... click here to order. Also, if you come to the Vanderbilt Bookstore between the dates of August 16-September 5 and trade in a non-Vanderbilt college shirt, you will receive a 25% off a brand new Vanderbilt t-shirt! All the old items will be donated to charity.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Can you hear me now?

by Barca Blog - Coach Johnson had one new twist to help the Commodores get "game ready" during their scrimmage inside Vanderbilt Stadium Saturday.

As the offensive and defensive units took to the field for the first series, they were greeted by a deafening noise over the speakers. It sounded similar to 92,000 screaming fans on a Saturday night in Death Valley, a place the 'Dores will visit on the second week of the season.

As I sat in the empty stands, the sound reverberated in my head like the twister in the opening scene of The Wizard of Oz. It was so loud, it even caused one trusted media member to make an error on a player's number, sending the rest of us into shock. Yes, the crowd noise even got the best of him.

Following the 75-play scrimmage, Coach Johnson explained the reason for the increase in decibels.

"We’re signaling a lot now," he said, "but there are some verbal commands that the quarterback has to make out on the field for the linemen. We wanted to make sure that they were going to be able to hear that.

"It makes you concentrate a little bit more or it makes you realize the need to concentrate a little more. That was more game-like than just a quiet scrimmage."

Johnson's message was loud and clear to senior center Bradley Vierling.

"We just really had to pay attention more," Vierling said. "Coach Sisk cranked up the speakers on us, but it was good. We need that because we'll have to go into places like LSU."

I'll leave you with this classic clip thanks to Chris.

MBB live stats vs. Townsville

By A. Boggs - In case you want to stay up late and follow the Commodores against the Townsville Crocs in Australia, you now can at this link.

Action starts at 10 p.m. central time.
Go 'Dores!

Photos: Special Visitor

by Barca Blog - The Commodores received a pep talk from a special guest following Friday night's practice– Vanderbilt Chancellor Nicholas Zeppos. To read more about his visit, click here.

Walker catches winning TD for Rams

by Barca Blog - Rookie receiver Sean Walker made a good first impression for the St. Louis Rams in Friday's preseason opener. The former Commodore caught a game-winning 13-yard touchdown pass from Keith Null midway through the fourth quarter as the Rams edged the New York Jets, 23-20, at Giants Stadium.

Walker, who is fighting to make the Rams roster, ended up with two catches for 18 yards. He talked to earlier this week about what it would take to make the squad.

"Just show up every day and be consistent," Walker said. "Show them my speed. Make an impression by catching every ball, finishing every drill. And then in these preseason games, go in there and do everything right. Execute everything we've learned."

Click Here to watch video of his touchdown at

Friday, August 14, 2009

My lips are sealed

by Barca Blog - It's officially been one week since Vanderbilt opened camp and the big question about who will start at quarterback can be summed up by three letters: TBD.

Head coach Bobby Johnson hasn't tipped his hand to the press so far (nor did we expect him to at this point), explaining that it's an open competition. Johnson has been asked several times throughout the week about how the QB's have performed, but has opted not to reveal if there's been any separation between the group.

"I'm pleased with Larry (Smith), I'm pleased with Mackenzi (Adams), I'm pleased with Jared Funk, I'm pleased with Charlie Goro, and Matt Casas," the head coach said. "We're just trying to put things in and see everybody execute."

I don't have any problems with his reasoning. If you don't have a clear cut favorite to start camp, then make them earn it. That's what it's for. Healthy competition is good. There's a long layover between spring and fall practice, so rather than jumping the gun, give them the reps to find out (a) who put in the work over the summer and (b) who is the best option to lead this offense. No reason to rush the decision process.

One thing's for sure... each signal caller will need to be ready no matter what the depth chart looks like heading into the Western Carolina opener on September 5. Three different quarterbacks have taken snaps in each of the Commodores previous three seasons.

Nice praise from a captain

by Barca Blog - So what is Bradley Vierling's assessment of the freshmen tailback trio of Warren Norman, Zac Stacy and Wesley Tate after their first week of practice at Vanderbilt.

"They're awesome," Vierling commented earlier this week. "Zac Stacy is really showing out. He can pick up blitzes, which to me that's more impressive than him running the ball for 15 yards. They're all doing great, but him imparticular, he's really, really doing well."

Nice praise indeed from the Commodores' two-time captain and senior center.

The freshmen backs have been one of several glaring positives in camp, displaying the ability to explode on any given carry during two scrimmages. All three should contend for playing time this season.

Vierling went on to say that Vanderbilt's o-line is focused on reducing the amount of sacks allowed this year (ranked ninth in the SEC with 26 in 2008), but also noted another tidbit of motivation for the front five.

"Personally, I think we want a 1,000-yard rusher, just one of them," Vierling added. "I know we're going to have a lot of different guys running the ball but I want one legitimate 1,000-yard rusher. That's what we want up front to show we're a unit that can move the ball."

The last time a 'Dore accomplished that feat was in 1995 when Jermaine Johnson rushed for 1,072 yards, which stands as the second-highest single-season total behind Corey Harris' 1,103 yards in 1991. The only other Commodore to break into four digits was Frank Mordica in 1978 with 1,065.

If you missed intern Travis' entire interview with Vierling on Tuesday, listen to it here.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

James Williams... Doin' work

by Barca Blog - I chatted with redshirt sophomore right tackle James Williams for the first time on Tuesday for a quick Q&A on A few things stood out to me:

1. Williams is an imposing figure, listed at 6-6 and 315 pounds in the Commodores 2009 media guide. Sure, I knew of his size, but it didn't really hit me until he was towering over me in the hallway outside of the locker room. If I'm a tailback, this is the kind of guy I want to run behind.

2. He is a soft-spoken giant. That's a good thing. I definitely didn't want to anger him with my line of questioning. He doesn't say a lot but is precise with the words he uses.

3. In a two and a half minute interview, Williams mentioned the word "work" five different times with an emphasis on "working hard." His demeanor strikes me of someone who is focused on making a leap on the gridiron this season. The Smyrna High product, who impressed coaches during spring practice with his improved play, has been "working" with the first team at right tackle during fall camp, and that's a testament to him considering seven Commodores with multiple starts on the o-line returned this year.

Anyway, check out the entire Q&A here.

"Stallings is best story in basketball"

By A. Boggs - That according to Mark Wiedmer of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, a longtime writer for the paper. Check out the article here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dore Jam reminder... This Sunday!

Vanderbilt’s featured Fan Day activity, Dore Jam, is scheduled this Sunday at the John Rich Practice Facility. Since its inception in 2002, the event has drawn large crowds of Commodore fans eager to get autographs of their favorite Vanderbilt student-athletes and coaches. Activities for kids also are in abundance during the event.

Dore Jam is scheduled from 4-6 p.m., and is free of charge. Admission to the practice fields, located just behind McGugin Athletic Center, is available off Natchez Trace.

Bye-bye bye week

By Ryan Schulz - When members of Vanderbilt’s football team suit up for the their season opener on Sept. 5 against Western Carolina, they will be embarking on a grueling stretch in which they will be playing the first of 12 games in 12 consecutive weeks.

The Commodores are the only team in the SEC that will play 12 straight games and one of just 15 programs in the country without a single bye week between games. Nine of the team’s without a bye week hail from the Big Ten, which has traditionally concluded its conference schedule the weekend before Thanksgiving.

Not having a break in the midst of a difficult schedule was certainly not done by choice of the football staff.

“I’m not real happy about it,” Bobby Johnson said. “I don’t think there’s anything anybody could do to avoid it. We certainly would have if we could have. In fact, we tried to fix it a little bit last year when we found out it would work out that way, but we just couldn’t get it done.”

The staff would definitely covet a week off, but not having a bye week will be nothing new to Vanderbilt’s coaching staff. Just three years ago, Vanderbilt didn’t have the luxury of a bye week in 2006 when the team finished 4-8 overall. No other SEC school has gone without a bye week since 2006.

Before the 2006 season, Vanderbilt had at least one bye week in every season dating back to 1955 when the Commodores defeated Auburn in the Gator Bowl. It wasn’t until after the 1955 season that bye weeks became a normal occurrence in college football.

Without a bye week, finding the extra time to recover from injuries and the typical dings and bruises that accompany a season will be one of the biggest challenges facing Vanderbilt in 2009. “We do have to be careful with how we work guys during the week and watch their legs,” Johnson said. “We have to make sure we don’t work guys too hard.”

To make it through the season, Vanderbilt will rely heavily on the conditioning work that took place this summer under the watch of speed, strength and conditioning director John Sisk.

“During the summer we lift five days a week,” speed, strength and conditioning director John Sisk said. “The NCAA gives us eight hours a week to work with them and we take advantage of every hour we get. It was a very productive summer with a lot of energy.”

Johnson hopes that the success experienced in summer conditioning will help limit the amount of conditioning work needed during the preseason and regular season.

“The great thing nowadays with everybody being able to go to summer school, especially your freshmen, is that they get in shape during the summer,” Johnson said. “Then we teach them the playbook and the game plan in preseason practice, so it's not that emphasis of getting them in shape that happens in the preseason practices any more. They're in shape. Then during the season, you’ve got to be smart about any kind of contact that you have during the week and the length of your practices.”

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Andy Katz blogs about Australia trip

By A. Boggs - ESPN senior college basketball writer Andy Katz had a nice article on about Coach Stallings and the team's trip to Australia. Check it out here.

Hayward ready for 'big step'

by Barca Blog - One of only three true freshmen to play for the Commodores last season, Casey Hayward gave us a glimpse of what he could bring to the gridiron.

With the NFL departure of All-American D.J. Moore and graduation of Darlron Spead, the sophomore defensive back will have his chance to make an impact in 2009. Hayward shined during spring practice and hopes to earn a starting spot this fall.

"It's a big step," Hayward said. "I know I've got to come in and fill a big role that D.J. fulfilled last year."

Hayward had his best performance of the season when Moore went down with an ankle injury in the second quarter of the Music City Bowl. The Perry, Ga., native responed with three tackles and a pair of defended passes in the Commodores' 16-14 victory over Boston College.

"It gave me a tremendous amount of confidence," Hayward admitted. "I know I can do it."

Watch's entire interview with Casey Hayward below:

Video: Johnson's Monday presser

by Barca Blog - Watch head coach Bobby Johnson's press conference following Monday night's practice at the John Rich Practice Facility.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Leave the sharks alone

by Barca Blog - What's one thing that men's basketball head coach Kevin Stallings won't be doing during the Commodores five-game tour in Australia?

Find out in the video below.

I don't blame him... just read this story from Time Magazine.

Also, make sure you keep up with assistant coach Brad Frederick's blog during during the trip for all the latest news from on and off the court. Check out the first two installments: Day 3, Days 1 & 2

Intern Travis is revealed

From Brayburn's award-winning documentary...

In this video clip, Vanderbilt soccer seniors Lindsay Ratterman (6) and Megan Forester (9) give the scoop on intern Travis during the team's preseason photo shoot. We discover how the media relations assistant was almost left in Athens, Ga., on a trip last year.

(Breaking news from the AP wire... Travis has officially signed a one-year extension to work in our office. He will receive minimal pay plus a year's supply of A1 Steak Sauce. Make sure you say hello if you see him at a Commodore event this year.)

Marve: 'No room for complacency'

by Barca Blog - Chris Marve terrorized opposing offenses to earn Freshman All-American honors last season.

And he's not satisfied with his performance just yet.

When asked to name a couple of areas he's trying to improve on, the hard-hitting linebacker was quick to point out that the job's never done.

"I'm just working on everything," Marve said. "I can't just name two things. I'm trying to improve every facet of my game to be the best linebacker I can possibly be for this team."

That's a scary thought considering the Memphis native ranked first in the SEC with four forced fumbles and sixth with 105 tackles (tops for freshmen) in 2008. He may be considered the most intense player on the field for the Commodores, but you'd be surprised to know that his mindset is almost exactly the opposite.

"The more relaxed you are on the field, the better you play," Marve explained. "That's my personal philosophy. The better you feel out there, there more you know, the more relaxed you play, the more you execute."

As for his thoughts on the Commodores' defensive unit improving off one of its finest seasons in recent memory?

"There's no room for complacency. Staying in the same position takes you down. We need to get better and try to be the best we can be, the best in the SEC, and the best in the country. We strive for nothing less."

Watch's entire interview below:

New Addition

by Barca Blog - We've added a new All Access player to the front page of thanks to CBS College Sports and ISP Sports (see image above - right column). This will be the place to watch the latest Commodore interviews, highlights, features, etc.

The good news is that the files are encoded in flash, so they will work on both PCs and Macs. Also, you can click on any of the thumbnails, and the video will automatically play in the screen above it.

Hope you enjoy it!

Video: Johnson's Sunday presser

by Barca Blog - Vanderbilt donned shoulder pads for the first time Sunday evening (recap), giving us a taste of what Tuesday's practice in full gear will be like.

"When we get in pads on Tuesday, we'll probably dedicate a little bit of time to real football," head coach Bobby Johnson said. "We'll scrimmage some and the inside drill will be live. It will be no holds barred then. Football is Football."

Watch Johnson's entire press conference following last night's practice below:

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Liddle signs with Twins

by Barca Blog - Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune is reporting that 15th-round draft pick Steven Liddle has signed with the Minnesota Twins.

Liddle, a second team All-SEC performer, had a standout sophomore year batting .348 with 10 homers and 51 RBIs. He led the team in virtually every offensive category during conference play including batting average (.374), runs (33), hits (43), doubles (tied-11), homers (7), total bases (75), slugging percentage (.652) and on-base percentage (.474).

Liddle was also spectacular in the outfield during his career, registering five assists while committing only four errors in two seasons.

The Franklin High product, and nephew of Twins bench coach Steve Liddle, was draft eligible because he redshirted his first year at VU. He will report to Elizabethton (Tenn.) of the Appalachian Rookie League Wednesday.

More Signing News: Earlier in the week, junior ace Mike Minor agreed to terms with the Atlanta Braves. He received a $2.42 million signing bonus, the highest ever given to a seventh overall selection.

“We were excited about being drafted in the first round, and then to be picked by the Braves was like a dream," Minor told the Atlanta Journal Constitution. "Now to get a bonus like this — it’s a little overwhelming.”

David Boclair of The City Paper also reported that pitcher Drew Hayes will be coming back for his senior season. Hayes is having a solid summer as a reliever for Yarmouth-Dennis, the Eastern Division regular season champions in the Cape Cod League. In 10 appearances, he's 3-0 with a 1.25 ERA in 21.2 innings. Y-D is currently down 1-0 to Cotuit in a best-of-3 playoff series.

Still to be Determined: Pitcher Caleb Cotham, a fifth-round selection of the New York Yankees, as well as the 'Dores incoming recruiting class have until Monday, August 17, to decide whether to enroll at Vanderbilt or go pro.

Sideline watch

by Barca Blog - One of the storylines coming out of Saturday's practice had to do with the Commodores that didn't take the field on day two.

First, three receivers – redshirt sophomore Udom Umoh, redshirt freshman John Cole and redshirt freshman Akeem Dunham – attended practice but did not participate due to minor injuries. Cole and Dunham tweaked hamstrings while Umoh had a sore shoulder.

"We were a little thin at receiver today," Johnson said. "We need all those guys out there. John is one of our most explosive receivers and Udom has continued to improve. We'll get them back when our trainers give their okay."

Also, senior tailback Jared Hawkins watched the two-hour session from the sidelines. The Commodores' top returning rusher missed all of spring practice after having offseason surgery on his foot.

"Yesterday I was back in full-go and today (the coaches) wanted to limit me a little bit to make sure I'm easing back into things," Hawkins said. "They don't want me to start back up right away.

"It's very important to be back. It's killing me to be on the sidelines every now and then. I'm itching and ready to go for the season."

Watch video (below) of Coach Johnson's post-practice press conference plus VUcommodores' interview with Hawkins. For a full recap of the action, click here.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Register for Commodore Kickoff event

Please join the National Commodore Club, Vanderbilt coaches and student-athletes for a picnic celebrating Vanderbilt athletics on Tuesday, Aug. 25, from 6 to 8 p.m. The program begins at 6:45 p.m. at the Memorial Gym Plaza and the adjacent baseball patio.

Head football coach Bobby Johnson will kick-off the picnic at 6:30 p.m. with remarks about 2009 Vanderbilt Football and several Vanderbilt coaches and student-athletes will also be on hand to discuss their upcoming seasons and sign autographs.

Tickets are $10 per person; Children 12 and under free. The picnic will feature barbecue and refreshments from Golden Rule Smokehouse.

Register online before Aug. 20 by clicking here.

Parking available at the Highland Avenue entrance of the 25th Avenue Garage. Rain Location is the practice gym in Memorial Gymnasium.

Breaking it down

by Barca Blog - With preseason camp officially underway, we're another step closer to the Commodores opener against Western Carolina on September 5.

Gone are the days of summer conditioning. Now the coaches can get down to business. They'll use the time to thoroughly evaluate their roster on the field and then re-evaluate them in the film room to see if progress has been made since the offseason.

"You can really start coaching now," head coach Bobby Johnson said after Friday's session. "You've got a practice under your belt and you've got some film to show them. They'll be really surprised when they see some of their technique, which we can make better right off the bat. You get started and then you break it all down again to show them what they can improve on."

The next big step will be Tuesday when the Commodores are scheduled to put on full pads. NCAA rules require teams to practice four times before strapping on the gear, so the guys will spend the next three days participating in drills similar to today.

Watch the video below to see Bobby Johnson's post-practice press conference:

Billinger staying humble

by Barca Blog - Greg Billinger is no longer the new kid on the block.

The senior defensive tackle had a breakout season in 2008 after patiently waiting his turn as a reserve for two years. He set personal career highs in virtually every statistical category, and led all lineman in total tackles with 47. He also started every game for a team that finally ended the school's 26-year bowl drought.

But don't expect him to get a big head about it.

"It's confidence, but not cockiness," Billinger remarked. "I play out here like I'm a freshman every day. And when you play like that, you don't have that attitude that you're better than the next guy. If you have that attitude, then you shoot yourself in the foot. You've got to always keep that humbleness about you."

Find out what else Billinger had to say by watching Friday's post-practice interview below:

Friday, August 7, 2009

Larry Smith - Preseason Interview

by Barca Blog - Redshirt sophomore quarterback Larry Smith talked with the press following Vanderbilt's first preseason practice Friday evening at the John Rich Practice Facility.

Watch the video below:

Without the fans, black and gold would just be colors

by Barca Blog - At the moment, I'm probably like the rest of you... just passing time on a Friday afternoon at work thinking about the beginning of preseason camp, which gets underway tonight at the John Rich Practice Facility.

While we're waiting, I thought some of you out there, especially the ones that live outside of Nashville, would like to hear some of the local radio ads promoting season tickets (order here starting at $109). These four spots include some of Joe Fisher's best calls -- with a funny twist -- from last season's bowl run.

And kudos to our marketing department, which took home the top prize for this ad concept at the National Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators (NACMA) convention in June.

Click the links below to listen. You can also download them at our Athletics itunes page.

Spot 1: Final seconds of 2008 Music City Bowl victory
Spot 2: Myron Lewis' interception against Auburn
Spot 3: Adams to Wheeler for TD against Auburn
Spot 4: Jared Hawkins TD against South Carolina

Thursday, August 6, 2009

SEC television answers

By A. Boggs - We’ve gotten a few questions about some of the logistics of the SEC’s new television deal with ESPN. Hopefully, these answers will be able to help you find the Commodores on a television set this fall.

Will every VU game be on television? In the SEC footprint, you’ll be able to watch every game on one of these channels: ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, the SEC Network (see tentative list here), Fox Sports Net, Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast (CSS), or on a pay-per-view basis (each school gets to designate one game on their schedule for pay-per-view if they choose). If you’re outside the footprint, you’ll be able to get the games on ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU for sure. The SEC Network is also expanding into markets such as New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and many other major markets, with the list growing almost on a daily basis. You may be able to get those games. And if you’re outside the footprint, you won’t be getting the FSN South or CSS games. However, every game on the SEC Network, FSN South, CSS, and the pay-per-views will be available on ESPN360 or on the network’s GamePlan package.

One marquee game per week? That’s all up in the air right now, but it looks like there will be many. Here’s the listing of the first three weeks of games and their television outlets.

In the first week alone, if you live in New York, you’ll be getting seven SEC games on either ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, or ESPNU. And for the other five, if you have ESPN360 or you buy the GamePlan package, you can watch them all! Or, if a local station near you is a part of the SEC Network, you will get those telecasts on that over-the-air channel. Notice the primetime nature of the games – that will be a staple of most weeks during the season.

What time are the games? There are three games that are set in stone – the SEC Network telecast, which will take place at 12:21 Eastern time; after September 19, a CBS game at 3:30 Eastern time; and a 7 p.m. Eastern time game on ESPNU. The rest will, in all likelihood, be primetime games on ESPN, ESPN2, CSS, or FSN South.

Will CBS offer live streaming of games? From all that we’ve seen and heard, that practice will continue, just like 2008.

And, as mentioned before, if you live outside of the SEC footprint and have ESPN360 or GamePlan, you will get to watch every football game in the SEC this season.

See this article from Stewart Mandel of for an analysis of how big this deal really is.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Football freshmen move-in photos

by Barca Blog - A new crop of Commodores moved into their residential living space Wednesday eager to participate in their first college practice in less than 48 hours.

The prospects lugged their personal belongings into Vanderbilt's state-of-the-art community known as The Commons, which houses all incoming freshmen. You may remember this location as the same place that ESPN set up their popular College Gameday show for the Auburn game last season.

I was able to capture 12 photos for your viewing pleasure. It was tougher to get most of the newcomers on camera this year since The Commons consists of several residence halls (and I haven't mastered the art of being ten places at once).

Anyway, Click Here to view my photos.

And if you want to take a trip down memory lane, here are links to galleries from the previous two freshmen move-in days: 2007 Gallery / 2008 Gallery

Note: Commodore returnees will report Thursday with camp scheduled to begin Friday evening at the John Rich Practice Facility. All preseason practices are closed to the general public.