Saturday, October 31, 2009

Fox17's Halloween surprise on Stallings

by Barca Blog - Paul Jones, Sports Director for FOX17 News, surprised Vanderbilt men's basketball head coach Kevin Stallings before the Commodores' practice on Friday afternoon at Memorial Gym.

Watch the following video to find out what happened:

Georgia Tech Gameday Prep

No. 11 Georgia Tech (7-1) at Vanderbilt (2-6, 0-5)

Kickoff: 6:30 p.m. CT, Walk-up Tickets Available ($40)

Location: Vanderbilt Stadium (39,773) in Nashville, Tenn.

Pregame: Halloween Activities in Vandyville

TV: CSS (Todd Bell and Chris Doering)

Radio: 104.5 the Zone, XM 141, Sirius 121 (More affiliates)

Web:, Live Audio, Live Stats, Twitter

Weather: High 60/Low 38/0% Chance of Rain

Series: GT leads 18-15-3 (GT leads 8-6-3 in Nashville)

Last Meeting: Georgia Tech won 24-17 (OT) in 2004

Commodore Gameday Central: Click Here

Other Games in the SEC (CT): Live Scoring
No. 25 Ole Miss at Auburn - 11:21 a.m. (SEC Network)
Georgia at No. 1 Florida - 2:30 p.m. (CBS)
Eastern Michigan at Arkansas - 6 p.m. (ESPNU)
Mississippi State at Kentucky - 6 p.m. CT (FSN)
No. 22 South Carolina at Tennessee - 6:45 p.m. (ESPN)
Tulane at No. 9 LSU - 7 p.m. (PPV)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Q&A with Derrick Byars

By Barca Blog - Earlier in the week, media outlets reported that the Chicago Bulls signed Derrick Byars to a non-guaranteed contract to start the NBA season. While the Bulls organization could dismiss Byars at any time under the deal, it came as a surprise when they decided to waive him one day later.

I contacted Derrick via email (before he was cut) about doing a Q&A, and he agreed to the request. Within 24 hours, the Bulls let him go. When this news came out, I expected nothing back from him in return, but was surprised when he took the time to answer every question about his experience with the Bulls. He’s a class act for sure and a great representative of Vanderbilt University.

Here’s what DB had to say:

What were your emotions during the last few days?

“My emotions on ‘making the opening night roster’ were naturally pleased that I made the cut, but I was never overly excited or too ahead of myself because the goal has always been and continues to be an NBA player that is productive in regular season NBA games. And even though this is as far into the preseason I have been so far, playing in a regular season game has still yet to happen.

“(Making it this far) still isn’t gratifying because I am and always have been a very motivated and determined player who is never content or complacent with where I am. Yes, the road has been difficult in terms of my pro career after Vanderbilt, but I can never be content until my career is completely over. I'm always going to be striving for better.”

Explain the timeline from being on the roster to being waived.

“My agent contacted me last week to tell me my name would be on the opening night roster but stated that the Bulls had no definitive time frame as to how long they planned on keeping me around due to financial constraints. Even though my contract would have been worth the league minimum, they felt it was in their best interest to hold on to as much flexibility under the cap because they didn't have much wiggle room, as I understood it. Front office personnel informed me that this decision was purely financial and had nothing to do with my talent as a pro basketball player.”

During the preseason, you traveled with the Bulls to London for an exhibition game. How was that experience?

“London was great. As a team, we had a chance to come together and get closer as a team while also taking in a little history and culture. Seeing some of the sites like Westminster Abbey and the Big Ben clock was a unique experience and we all had a good time. The fans there gave us a very nice and warm reception.”

There were a couple of SEC players on the Bulls' roster. Any stories you could share with us?

“Yes, there are a bunch of SEC alumni on the team. There were a lot of stories, but the most frequent topic concerning Vandy dealt with Memorial Gym. Every guy on the team (Joakim Noah, Tyrus Thomas, Jannero Pargo, Chris Richard) talked about how much they hated playing at Vandy. ‘What's up with you guys' court, man?’ is what they would say. Obviously everybody hated the unique home court advantage we had and talked about the adversity they had being so far from their bench to hear their coach and the noise factor with the crowd. I told them, ‘Anytime you lose one game from the beginning of the 2007 conference season until the end of the 2008 season, it's certainly a program that has a tough environment to play.’"

While you were in Chicago, were you in touch with any of the former Commodores playing for the Bears?

“Earl Bennett and I have actually been in touch while I was in Chicago and I was getting around to attending a Chicago Bears game to support him. We were trying to work our schedules out. Chris Williams is a friend of mine as well and needless to say I'm happy to be seeing those two and Jay Cutler, Hunter Hillenmeyer, and DJ Moore representing VU in their Bears uniforms.”

Can you talk a little more about what your deal was with the Bulls?

“Obviously, my particular contract was very tentative and not guaranteed at all. I was a little confused as to what the entire situation meant, but I just tried to work as hard as I could daily in practice and in games. I wanted to continue to do all the little things and be a good teammate. Unfortunately, the nature of the NBA is very unpredictable, and I am forced to continue my journey by working hard and seeking what's next in store for me. As always, I appreciate all of the support and following from everybody in the Nashville area and VU.”

photo courtesy of

Audio: Steven Stone interview

by Barca Blog - Click Here to listen to senior defensive end Steven Stone talk with the media about this week's matchup with Georgia Tech (6:30 p.m. CT).

Stone saw his first action of the season last week against South Carolina after missing the first seven games with a broken foot.

Also, walk-up tickets for Saturday's game are still available for $40. There will be Halloween activities in Vandyville starting at 3:30 p.m. plus an autograph session with both Commodore basketball teams. More Information

How to attack a retreat

By Weinman - The women's basketball team spent last weekend at the Deer Run Retreat in Thompson's Station, Tenn., to take part in team-building exercises prior to the start of the 2009-10 season. The coaches and players enjoyed an evening campfire, participated in problem-solving games and tackled the facility's ropes course.

Check the video (below) to see if anyone has figured out who locked the coaches in their cabin on Saturday night.... And come check out the team TONIGHT as they play their first preseason game of the year when Union (Tenn.) University visits Memorial Gymnasium for a 7 p.m. tip-off.

MBB preseason polls released

by Barca Blog - Sure, preseason polls don't guarantee a spot in March Madness, but it's nice to see the Commodores garner some early recognition from the coaches and media.

Vanderbilt will begin its 2009-10 campaign at No. 30 in both the AP and ESPN/USA Today rankings, which were released on Thursday. The Commodores return 11 scholarship players and 14 lettermen from a 19-12 team a year ago.

Three SEC teams were listed in the top 25 with Kentucky leading the way (No. 3 AP/No. 4 ESPN) as well as Tennessee (No. 10/11) and Mississippi State (No. 18/19).

Click here to view the polls

Video: Know Your Commodore

Who knows women's soccer midfielder Megan Forester better... Lindsay Ratterman or Megan Kinsella? Find out in the latest Know Your Commodore segment on

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Video: Lance Goulbourne Reel

Next up in our preseason men's basketball highlight series is sophomore guard/forward Lance Goulbourne (below).

You can reserve seats to every Commodore home game this season by clicking here.

Beat the Clock: Malmed vs. Findley

Vanderbilt cross country teammates Billy Malmed and Kristen Findley face off in the latest "Beat the Clock" segment on

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Video: Favorite Halloween Costumes

by Barca Blog - You probably remember your favorite Halloween costume that you wore as a kid.

I wish I could say the same. My childhood memories have been clouded ever since my parents decided to dress me up as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man during grade school. This probably explains my countless numbers of years in therapy (that's my excuse, at least).

Anyways, we asked a couple of Commodores on the women's basketball team about their favorite Halloween costumes. Watch the video below.

And don't forget, season tickets start at only $32. Click Here to reserve your seats today.

Soccer lineup change pays off

by SID - The women's soccer team closes out the regular season at home this Friday against Kentucky at 7 p.m. Just a couple of weeks ago, it looked like it would be the final game of the 2009 campaign as well, as the team lost its fourth straight game at Auburn (3-0) to drop to 7-7-1 overall and 1-6 in SEC play.

The coaching staff decided to make a couple of lineup changes, giving sophomore Emily Grant and redshirt freshman Kate Goldin starting nods against Alabama. The moves have paid off since then as the team has won three straight including a 1-0 win over No. 17 Ole Miss last Sunday in Oxford. Both of them have come up big in critical situations. Grant scored the game-winning goal in overtime against Alabama on Oct. 19, giving the Commodores their first SEC road win of the season. Goldin, who had battled through a knee injury suffered in her senior year in high school, came through with the game-winner against the Rebels on Sunday to extend the win streak to three, the longest in league play since the 2005 campaign.

The Commodores control their own destiny in terms of reaching the SEC tournament next week in Orange Beach, Ala. A win or tie against the Wildcats will clinch a spot in the field for the first time since the 2006 season.

Head coach Ronnie Woodard is proud of the way the team has responded to the challenge of getting back on track to end the season.

"It’s always a challenge as a coach to keep the team together and still believing in themselves when going through a rough stretch like that," said Woodard. "I am proud with the way they stood up to the adversity after they experienced some tough losses."

The team has stepped up the intensity throughout all phases and have posted three straight shutout wins in the process. Goalkeeper Rachel Bachtel was honored by the SEC as its Defensive Player of the Week after recording 10 saves in those contests.

After the Ole Miss match, Woodard said that reaching 10 wins was one of the team's goals coming into the season and another was reaching Orange Beach, an experience only two current Commodores have had a chance to participate in: senior Megan Forester and redshirt junior Nicole Lukens.

"The girls have bought in and are fighting hard and are getting good results," said Woodard. "We took the stance of just taking it one game at a time in order to get to Orange Beach. Right now, the short term goals have proven to be very effective towards this goal."

Cross Country Pumpkin Carving

By Travis Young - The Vanderbilt men's and women's cross country teams participated in fall break festivities last week at the McGugin Center and Coach Riley's house. The team put its creative minds to the test as they had a pumpkin carving contest before attending a haunted house.

The carving team of Ellen Black, Adrienne DiRaddo, Jillian Currie and Rita Jorgensen took home first place honors for their "Zoro" design while Jenner Kizer, Kyle Rewick and Casey Howards placed second with the pirate face.

Click here to view the photo gallery from the day's events.

Video: Beal Reel

by Barca Blog - As we edge closer to the first exhibition game.... Aaron (from our office) has put together highlight videos of some of the returning men's basketball players.

First up... senior guard Jermaine Beal.

Check back for more videos over the next two weeks. A remember, season tickets are still available -- Order Online

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

NFL Week 7 Recap

by Barca Blog - Check out how these former Commodores performed in Week 7 of the 2009 NFL season:

Chicago Bears: Lost to Cincinnati, 45-10
QB Jay Cutler - Started, 26-37, 251 yds, TD, 3 INTs
OL Chris Williams - Started at right tackle
WR Earl Bennett - 4 rec, 48 yds (long 26)
LB Hunter Hillenmeyer - Started, 3 tackles (one for loss)
DB D.J. Moore - Inactive

Tennessee Titans: Bye Week
DT Jovan Haye

Buffalo Bills: Defeated Carolina, 20-9
LB Marcus Buggs - Out for season, knee injury in Week 5

Washington Redskins: Lost to Philadelphia, 27-17
TE Todd Yoder - One tackle on special teams

New York Giants: Lost to Arizona, 24-17
LB Jonathan Goff - Played but no stats recorded

Houston Texans: Defeated San Francisco, 24-21
LB Jamie Winborn - Inactive

Byars makes Bulls roster

by Barca Blog - Congrats DB... According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, former Commodore Derrick Byars will be on the Chicago Bulls' opening day roster. Byars has a non-guaranteed contract that can be trimmed before January.

The Bulls will begin the 2009-10 season by hosting San Antonio Thursday night at 7 p.m. CT on TNT.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Upon further review...

by Barca Blog - During Monday's session with the press, head coach Bobby Johnson weighed in on two crucial calls (both of which were reviewed by the replay booth) that went against the Commodores in Saturday's 14-10 loss to South Carolina.

Play No. 1: Patrick Benoist recovered Kenny Miles' fumble inside South Carolina's 15-yard line on the opening drive of the game, but officials ruled after replay that Miles was down before he lost the ball.

"The fumble is hard to tell," Johnson said, "but it was ruled a fumble, and if you have to have conclusive evidence (to overturn it), I don't think it was there."

Play No. 2: D.L. Moore's 35-yard TD reception in the second quarter was in question after he juggled the ball while trying to get a foot down in the end zone. Officials upheld the touchdown call to give the Gamecocks a 7-0 lead.

"The touchdown was even clearer in my opinion," Johnson added. "In my opinion, his foot was clearly on the line after he bobbled the ball. He had possession and his left foot was in the air and his right foot came down on the line."

Johnson made it clear that he supports the current method of review, but plans to contact Rogers Redding, SEC Coordinator of Officials, on Monday to discuss the plays -- a normal procedure by coaches following each game.

For a full transcript of the press conference,
click here.

Florida kickoff announced

by Barca Blog - Just announced by the SEC... Vanderbilt's matchup with top-ranked Florida on November 7 is scheduled to kickoff at 6:15 p.m. CT in Gainesville.

The game will be televised by ESPN or ESPN2 (network will be selected after results of 10/31).

Game week!

By Weinman - We're only four days away from the first women's basketball exhibition of the 2009-10 season, when Union University visits Memorial Gymnasium on Friday, Oct. 30, for a 7 p.m. CT tip.

This past weekend, the Commodores went on an overnight team-building retreat south of Nashville. The squad took a video camera along and captured some behind-the-scenes footage, so come back to later this week to check it out.

Johnson's Presser, Call-In Show Monday

by Barca Blog - Two quick Monday reminders...

*Coach Johnson will field questions from the press about this week's matchup vs. Georgia Tech today at noon CT. We will webcast the event live on

*The Bobby Johnson Call-In Show, presented by Martin and Zerfoss Insurance and Auto-Owners Insurance, will be broadcast tonight at 6:30 p.m. CT inside the Holiday Inn Vanderbilt. For out-of-towners, the show can be heard live on Click Here

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Final: South Carolina 14, Vanderbilt 10

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Stephen Garcia threw two touchdown passes and South Carolina (No. 24 BCS, No. 23 AP) ended Vanderbilt's two-game series win streak with a 14-10 victory Saturday night.

Click here for postgame coverage

In Progress: Vanderbilt vs. South Carolina

by Barca Blog - The Commodores and Gamecocks are currently in action at Williams-Brice Stadium. Follow the action on

Photo by Mike Marti

Travisodes: Trivia Answer

by Barca Blog - Several of you came up with the correct answer (49 or 50 percent) to this week's Travisodes trivia question. We could only select one winner, though, so congratulations to Bobby Baer. Bobby will receive a 2009-10 autographed men's basketball poster.

Check back for future giveaways.

South Carolina Gameday Prep

Vanderbilt (2-5, 0-4 SEC) at South Carolina (5-2, 2-2)

Kickoff: 6 p.m. CT

Location: Williams-Brice Stadium (80,250) in Columbia, S.C.

TV: ESPNU (Collins, Huard), GamePlan not available

Radio: 104.5 the Zone, XM 201, Sirius 217 (More affiliates)

Web: Live Audio, Live Stats, Twitter, ESPN 360 not available

Weather: High 76/Low 51/10% Chance of Rain

Series: SC leads 14-4 (SC leads 6-2 in Columbia)

Last Meeting: Vanderbilt 24, South Carolina 17 (2008)

Commodore Gameday Central: Click Here

Other Games in the SEC (CT): Live Scores
Arkansas at Ole Miss - 11:21 a.m. (SEC Network)
Tennessee at No. 2 Alabama - 2:30 p.m. (CBS)
LA-Monroe at Kentucky - 6 p.m. (FSN)
Auburn at No. 9 LSU - 6:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
No. 1 Florida at Mississippi State - 6:30 p.m. (ESPN)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Alberstadt to headline event at Factory

Press Release -- Nashville’s Keith Alberstadt will join honorary chair Kix Brooks (of country duo Brooks & Dunn) at the annual Laughter for the Children event at the Factory in November.

Alberstadt is a graduate of Vanderbilt University (1995). Prior to becoming a full-time comedian and moving to New York City, Alberstadt worked in the Vanderbilt Athletic Department and served as their sideline reporter for football games for many years. He currently provides “The Stadt Sheet” on 104.5 The Zone’s Overtime.

“The Magic of Laughter” evening will include a comedy performance, a strolling magician, dinner, drinks and auctions. It will be emceed by Rhori Johnston from News Channel 5.

The 16th Annual Laughter for the Children comedy event will be held Friday, November 13, at Liberty Hall at the Factory of Franklin in Franklin, Tenn., at 6:30 p. m.

Tickets for the main event are $85 per person, go to All proceeds will benefit Monroe Harding’s programs for at-risk children, youth and families in the foster care system.

Photos: Commodores arrive in Columbia

by Barca Blog - Check out Mike Marti's photos of Vanderbilt's walk-through session Friday afternoon at Williams-Brice Stadium. Click Here

Video: Men's Basketball practice

by Barca Blog - It's less than three weeks until the men's basketball team opens their 2009-10 campaign with an exhibition game against Alabama-Huntsville at Memorial Gym. (Click here to purchase season tickets)

I thought you might enjoy some video footage of the Commodores in action at practice earlier this week.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Know Your Commodore - Hannah Tuomi

Who knows women's basketball forward Hannah Tuomi better... Lauren Lueders or Jence Rhoads? Find out in the latest Know Your Commodore segment on (video below).

And don't forget, women's basketball season tickets start at only $32. Reserve your seats today by clicking here.

October issue of Commodore Nation

By Ryan Schulz - The October issue of Commodore Nation is now available online by clicking below. You can toggle between pages by clicking the arrows or you can zoom into the document by clicking it.

Included among other things in this issue are stories on cornerback Myron Lewis, men's tennis player Ryan Lipman, former Commodore defensive back Jimmy Williams and golfer Marina Alex.

To view more archived issues, here.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Spurrier comments on the Commodores

by Barca Blog - South Carolina head coach Steve Spurriertalked about this week's matchup with Vanderbilt during Tuesday's session with the press. The Gamecocks are trying to break a two-game losing streak against the Commodores.

"The pressure is on us to play the best we can every week. We don't get too much in what happened last year or the year before. They outplayed us the last two years. They were better than we were. Give them credit. We'll try to play better this year and coach better, and see if we can come out on top against Vanderbilt.

"If you're going to beat them, you have to `beat' them. ... It's a big game for us and we all know the importance of the game. Hopefully we'll be prepared to play our best one of the year. That's what it will take to beat Vandy Saturday night."

Click here to read more of Spurrier's quotes

Travisodes: Basketball Walk-On Tryouts

by Barca Blog - In our latest Travisode... Intern Travis attempts to make the Vanderbilt men's basketball team at walk-on tryouts. Watch the footage below to see how he did during the workout (with extra outtakes at the end).

Also in the video... find out how you can win an autographed team poster in our latest online giveaway. Submit your answers on our Vanderbilt University Athletics Facebook Fan page by noon CT on Friday, Oct. 23. Only one winner will be selected.

If you missed previous Travisodes, click here

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Ogilvy sidelined with concussion

by Barca Blog - According to The Tennessean and The City Paper, junior A.J. Ogilvy has missed the last couple of practices after sustaining a concussion from a collision with teammate Steve Tcheingang.

That hasn't been the only preseason problem for Ogilvy. The 6-11 center has also had issues with his heel, an injury that bothered him throughout his sophomore season.

“It's bothering me a little bit, but it’s nowhere near where it was last year,” Ogilvy told Jeff Lockridge. “I’d say I’m about 90 percent.”

Stallings told the press that Ogilvy has been sidelined because of his concussion, rather than his foot injury, and could return to practice in the next few days.

For more on Ogilvy, visit the following links:
The Tennessean: Ogilvy missing practice
The City Paper: Injury forces Ogilvy out of workouts

NFL Week 6 Recap

by Barca Blog - Check out how these former Commodores performed in Week 6 of the 2009 NFL season:

Chicago Bears: Lost to Atlanta, 21-14
QB Jay Cutler - Started, 27-43, 300 yds, 2 TDs, 2 INTs
OL Chris Williams - Started at right tackle
WR Earl Bennett - Started, 4 rec, 57 yds (long 24)
LB Hunter Hillenmeyer - Inactive
DB D.J. Moore - Inactive

Tennessee Titans: Lost to New England, 59-0
DT Jovan Haye - Started, two tackles

Buffalo Bills: Defeated NY Jets, 16-13 (OT)
LB Marcus Buggs - Out for season, knee injury in Week 5

Washington Redskins: Lost to Kansas City, 14-6
TE Todd Yoder - Played but no stats recorded

New York Giants: Lost to New Orleans, 48-27
LB Jonathan Goff - Played but no stats recorded

Monday, October 19, 2009

Video: WBB team calls fans

by Barca Blog - Members of the women's basketball spent two nights last week calling season ticket holders to thank them for their support. Jason Silvers captured the following footage (below) from one of their sessions.

If you haven't purchased your tickets... you can reserve seats to 16 regular-season home game for as little as $32 per season ticket. Click Here

VU picked third in SEC East by media, Ogilvy named to second team

By A. Boggs - Basketball must be close when preseason media polls hit the wire - and it must be here with the media's vote on the predicted order of finish in the SEC and their picks for all-conference and player of the year honors being released today.

The Commodores were picked third in the East by the writers covering the league, and junior center A.J. Ogilvy was named to the All-SEC second team. Kentucky was picked to win the SEC Tournament, and Patrick Patterson of Kentucky was the leading vote-getter for Player of the Year honors.

The SEC has the complete release here. SEC Media day is this Thursday in Birmingham, and VU's only exhibition game is November 10 at Memorial Gym against Alabama-Huntsville. There are a few season tickets remaining for the upcoming season, and you can order them online at or call 615-322-GOLD to pick them up.

Clinard vs. Reid in Black & Gold Game 4

by SID - Just received some info from captains Andrew Giobbi and Drew Hayes. Redshirt freshman Will Clinard will get the start for the Gold team, while Chase Reid will take the hill for the Black squad.

When "The Stache" (glamour shot above, to the right) talked to the duo last week, they mentioned that run differential would play a factor in the series. After the series, the team with the lower amount of runs scored would have to jog the difference Wednesday morning.

The Gold team got off to a quick start with a 6-3 win and a 7-1 victory. After the first two games, they had a 13-4 advantage, meaning a nine-mile run for the Black if things ended then. Well that ended on Sunday, with the Black team's 13-4 victory, the runs for the series are even at 17-17.

Tonight's game starts at 8 p.m. with the finale scheduled for 6 p.m. on Tuesday. You can follow the action on

Georgia Tech kickoff time announced

by Barca Blog - The SEC just announced that Vanderbilt's home matchup with Georgia Tech on Ocotber 31 is scheduled to kickoff at 6:30 p.m. CT on CSS.

Since the game falls on Halloween, fans of all ages will have the opportunity to participate in pregame trick-or-treating activities in Vandyville. Stay tuned for more information.

Click Here to purchase tickets

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Final: Georgia 34, Vanderbilt 10

by Barca Blog - Vanderbilt dropped its third straight game Saturday with a 34-10 loss to Georgia Saturday at Dudley Field. Click here for postgame reaction from the Commodores.

Photo by John Russell

Georgia Gameday Prep

Georgia (3-3, 2-2) at Vanderbilt (2-4, 0-3)

Kickoff: 11:21 a.m. CT

Location: Vanderbilt Stadium (39,773) in Nashville, Tenn.

TV: SEC Network (Neal, Ware and Capuano)

Radio: 104.5 the Zone, XM 199, Sirius 215 (More affiliates)

Web: ESPN360 Webcast, Live Audio, Live Stats, Twitter

Weather: High 48/Low 33/10% Chance of Rain

Series: UGA leads 49-18-2 (UGA leads 22-11-2 in Nashville)

Last Meeting: Georgia won 24-14 in 2008

Commodore Gameday Central: Click Here

Other Games in the SEC (CT): Live Scoring
Mississippi State at MTSU - 11:30 a.m. (ESPNU)
Arkansas at No. 1 Florida - 2:30 p.m. (CBS)
UAB at Ole Miss - 6 p.m. (FSN)
Kentucky at Auburn - 6:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
No. 22 So. Carolina at N0. 2 Alabama - 6:45 p.m. (ESPN)

'Dores need to overcome slow starts

by Barca Blog - We're less than an hour away from kickoff at Dudley Field. One of the keys for Vanderbilt today will be getting off to a good start against a struggling Georgia defense.

Take a look at how Vanderbilt's offense has fared in the opening quarter in its losses to LSU, Mississippi State, Ole Miss and Army.

First Quarter Production in Four Losses:
Total Scoring: Opponent 10, VU 0
Total First Downs: 5 (High- 2 vs. LSU)
Total Yards: 116 (29 avg)
3 and Out: 8 of 13 possessions
Time of Poss: Opponent leads 39:31 to 21:29

Friday, October 16, 2009

Armstrong making his case

by Barca Blog - With the loss of starting pitchers Mike Minor, Caleb Cotham and Nick Christiani, head coach Tim Corbin will be looking to fill the holes in his weekend rotation for the 2010 season.

One of the candidates will be hard-throwing sophomore Jack Armstrong.

Last night, the 6-6, 226 pound right-hander gave a solid effort for the Gold team in the Commodores’ intrasquad series opener. Armstrong earned the win, allowing two runs -- one earned -- and three hits in four innings of work.

Armstrong began making his case for a starting job with a terrific summer in the Cape Cod Baseball League. Playing for Wareham, he went 4-1 with a 2.57 ERA and only allowed 27 hits while striking out 31 in 35 innings of work.

“He didn’t pitch a lot for us last year, but went to the Cape over the summer and was the starting pitcher in the All-Star game at Fenway Park,” Corbin told the 104.5 Wake Up Zone. “The progression he’s made over the course of the summer against very good talent only helps his confidence. Guys who have good summers like that really help us out."

The Jupiter, Fla., native only saw limited action in his freshman year, but worked hard on developing his pitches.

“His velocity is in the 94-97 range but the thing about a big kid like that is that one of his best pitches is his changeup," Corbin added. "He has a great feel for it.”

Click Here to listen to Corbin’s 104.5 interview

Byars continues quest to make NBA

by Barca Blog - Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald wrote a good article on Derrick Byars' quest to make the Chicago Bulls' opening day roster.

Through five preseason games, Byars is averaging 7.6 points and 4.2 rebounds in 21.2 minutes of action. He's used the opportunity to showcase his outside shooting range, hitting 6-for-13 (46.2%) from behind the arc.

"I've been very pleased with his effort and production," head coach Vinny Del Negro said. "He's a really nice kid, and you want to see good things happen to kids that work as hard as he has."

No official word yet on if Byars will make the team. Chicago currently has 15 players on its roster -- the maximum allowed by the league on opening day -- but could cut down to 13 to avoid paying league luxury taxes. The Bulls have three games left in the preseason before their regular season matchup with San Antonio on October 29.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

SEC Football Week 7 Matchups

Click Here for's Preview; All Times Central

Saturday, October 17

Georgia (3-3, 2-2) at Vanderbilt (2-4, 0-3)
11:21 a.m.; SEC Network (Neal, Ware and Capuano)

Mississippi State (2-4, 1-2) at MTSU (3-2)
11:30 a.m.; ESPNU (Matvick and Diaz-Infante)

Arkansas (3-2, 1-2) at No. 1 Florida (5-0, 3-0)
2:30 p.m.; CBS (Lundquist, Danielson and Wolfson)

UAB (2-3) at Ole Miss (3-2, 1-2)
6 p.m.; FSN (Rathbun, Archer and Hildreth)

Kentucky (2-3, 0-3) at Auburn (5-1, 2-1)
6:30 p.m.; ESPNU (Collins and Huard)

No. 22 South Carolina (5-1, 2-1) at N0. 2 Alabama (6-0, 3-0)
6:45 p.m.; ESPN (Nessler, Blackledge and Andrews)

Beat the Clock: Hilliard vs. Brewer

by Barca Blog - We just started a new series on called Beat the Clock, which consists of two student-athletes competing in a 45-second challenge to see who can get the most answers right.

Baseball's Alex Hilliard and Russell Brewer were the first Commodores to take their shot at the game. And while some of the questions may seem easy to answer, you must remember that the mind can do funny things as the pressure builds and the seconds tick away.

I thought both of these guys did a great job... but of course, there could only be one winner. Find out who came out on top in the video below:

October Student-Athletes of the Month

by Barca Blog - Congratulations to Ashley Belden (Women's Bowling) and Vijay Paul (Men's Tennis) for being named Vanderbilt's Student-Athletes of the Month for October.

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.

Cheer for 12 months of the year

by Barca Blog - Commodore fans... have you started thinking about gift ideas for the holiday season? Well, look no further than the official 2009-10 Vanderbilt Cheerleading calendar.

You can purchase this item online (click here) for only $10 plus $2 for shipping. Or just ask a cheerleader for a calendar the next time you're at a Vanderbilt sporting event. Part of the proceeds will support the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

(Photography by Rory Hamilton)

Video: Black and Gold draft strategy

by Barca Blog - Vanderbilt Baseball's annual Black and Gold series begins tonight at Hawkins Field. The format has changed to a best-of-five series, so come out to the ballpark to get a look at the 2010 squad (schedule and rosters).

If you've ever wondered how the teams are selected, just watch this video of Black captain Drew Hayes and Gold captain Andrew Giobbi discussing the draft.

Richt praises Vanderbilt defense

by Barca Blog - Georgia head coach Mark Richt gave his assessment of Vanderbilt's defense during his weekly press conference on Tuesday.

"They've held people out of the end zone a good bit in the red zone. They've forced a bunch of field goals. The LSU game was very close at the half. Same thing with Ole Miss. They did a very good job defensively in the last game dealing with an offense that is not normal for them to participate against.

"They are doing a good job defensively. You'd like to say we are going to line up and methodically move it down the field, but I haven't seen anybody do it yet. Guys are going to have to make plays, guys are going to have to get in situations and do something to kind of break the dam.

"The one thing as you watch those games, you'll watch the defense play, and the next series you'll see the scoreboard and a lot of times there wasn't a lot of offensive production from Vanderbilt. It helped the teams that were struggling against them. It helped Ole Miss, it helped LSU as they were trying to get some points on the board that their defenses were playing extremely well that day. I think they are underrated."

To read a transcript of Richt's press conference, click here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Power of the SEC

From - CBS Sports’ season-to-date coverage of the SEC ON CBS has earned a national household rating/share of 3.8/9, up +36% from a 2.8/6 last year. This 3.8/9 is the highest season-to-date rating for college football at this point in the season on CBS Sports in 10 years since a 4.2/10 in 1999.

CBS Sports’ coverage of the SEC ON CBS on Saturday, Oct. 10, which saw No. 1 Florida defeat No. 4 LSU in prime time, earned a preliminary national rating/share of 6.1/11, up 61% from last year’s 3.8/7 (LSU at Florida 10/11/08).

The Florida-LSU game on CBS Sports scored the highest rating for a college football game on any broadcast network in the 2009 season and is CBS Sports’ highest rated college football game since the SEC Championship game (Alabama-Florida, 9.3/20 on 12/06/08).

Video: Know Your Teammate

by Barca Blog - Check out Travis Young's "Know Your Teammate" segment with swimmers Anna Fargo and Jennifer Molchan. The Commodores will host their only meet of the season this Saturday at 2 p.m. CT inside the Centennial Sportsplex.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Bulldogs face similar concerns

by Barca Blog - As Vanderbilt deals with the fallout of Saturday's failure in West Point, the Commodores' next opponent will be battling the same issues heading into Saturday's matchup (11:20 a.m. CT).

Off to its worst start since 1996, Georgia (3-3, 2-2 SEC) will travel to Nashville reeling from a disastrous 45-19 loss at the hands of Tennessee in Knoxville. The Bulldogs' offense committed three turnovers and didn't make it into the red zone against the Vols, while their defense surrendered almost 500 yards of total offense.

Overall, Georgia ranks 11th in the SEC in total defense (377.2/game), scoring defense (30.7) and pass defense (249.0) and dead last in rushing offense (97.2) and turnover margin (-11).

With plenty of concern swirling around Athens, the Bulldogs will try to regroup against a struggling Vanderbilt squad also hoping for a midseason reversal of fortune.

“We’ve got to get better period, on offense, defense and coaching,” Georgia head coach Mark Richt said. “As coaches, we have to make sure when we put a plan in, that it’s not too much and that our team is capable of doing what we want to do. We have to motivate them, these are all the things that coaches do. The point I’m making is where we are, it’s a culmination of everything and I’m not pointing at someone individually, we all have to improve.”

Flashback: You might remember Georgia had their backs against the wall the last time they played in Nashville (2007). That team also opened league play at 2-2 and was on the brink of being upset by the Commodores until Brandon Coutu kicked a game-winning field goal as time expired to lift the Bulldogs to a 20-17 win. UGA celebrated by jumping on the Vanderbilt star logo at midfield.

Georgia didn't lose the rest of the way and capped off the season with a 41-10 victory over Hawaii in the Sugar Bowl.

Ouch Stat: Both offenses have struggled lately with getting the ball in the end zone. Vanderbilt has been held without an offensive touchdown in 7 of its last 8 quarters while Georgia has come away empty in 10 of its last 11 quarters.

NFL Week 5 Recap

by Barca Blog - Check out how these former Commodores performed in Week 5 of the 2009 NFL season:

Chicago Bears: Bye Week

Tennessee Titans: Lost to Indianapolis, 31-9
DT Jovan Haye - Started but no stats recorded

Buffalo Bills: Lost to Cleveland, 6-3
LB Marcus Buggs - Two tackles. He suffered a season-ending knee injury in the game.

Washington Redskins: Lost to Carolina, 20-17
TE Todd Yoder - Played but no stats recorded

New York Giants: Defeated Oakland, 44-7
LB Jonathan Goff - Five tackles (four on special teams)

Jenkins named one of nation's top shooters

By A. Boggs -' Jeff Goodman asked his readers to submit to him a list of the nation's top shooters in college basketball, and after the votes were tallied, Commodore freshman John Jenkins was selected as the third-best shooter in the nation.

Here's what Goodman had to say about the Vanderbilt freshman:

3. John Jenkins, 6-4, 215, SG, Fr., Vanderbilt: He's one of the few freshman to make the list. He shot 47 percent from beyond the arc and 88 percent from the line as a senior in high school.

"He has perfect technique, a great follow through and practices ALL the time. He's the purest shooter I've had."Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings

To see the rest of Goodman's list, click on this link.

Just a reminder the official start to basketball practice is this Friday, October 16!

Black and Gold gametimes set

by SID - As Eric Jones mentioned in an earlier blog, the annual Black and Gold series has been extended from three games to five this year. The games will be played on October 15, 16, 18, 19 and 20. The first week of practice was pushed back four days due to wet weather, so this allowed head coach Tim Corbin to add the extra games. The teams will be selected later this week and we will post them as they come available. All five games of the series will be played, weather permitting.

Admission to the games are free and fans will be able to see 11 newcomers from a recruiting class ranked No. 8 in the country by Collegiate Baseball. Below is the full schedule:

Thursday, October 15- 6 p.m.
Friday, October 16- 6 p.m.
Saturday, October 17- OFF (Football vs. Georgia at 11:20)
Sunday, October 18- 1 p.m.
Monday, October 19- 8 p.m. (due to afternoon class schedules)
Tuesday, October 20- 6 p.m.

We will have live stats and audio available for all five games on Eric "The Stache" Jones will call the action with select guests throughout the series.

Picky call takes away winning score

by Barca Blog - What should have been a proud moment for senior receiver Alex Washington and the rest of the Commodore offense was erased by a questionable call from the ACC officiating crew Saturday in West Point.

Down 13-10 to Army in the final minute of regulation, quarterback Larry Smith found Washington wide open in the corner of the end zone for what would have been the game-winning touchdown. But receiver Udom Umoh was flagged for pass interference for picking Washington's defender to negate the score.

After reviewing the film, head coach Bobby Johnson addressed the play on his coaches show last night.

"I thought it was a poor call," Johnson said. "Udom was the outside receiver going in, and Alex was the inside receiver going out. Udom ran a little curl and was setup right where he was supposed to be. He wasn't even on the same level as their defensive back. The player covering Udom came in and pushed him in the back and into the other defensive back (covering Washington) and the official called offensive interference against us.

"To me, it was plain as day if you were looking at that play. I don't see how you could miss it."

Yes, I think we'd all agree that you can't hang this disappointing loss on one missed call. The Commodores committed several mistakes throughout the game that ultimately doomed their comeback bid (Johnson stated the same thing, too). But it's also hard to ignore that a "picky" penalty took the winning score off the board.

And no matter how the team played against Army, 3-3 would look a whole lot better right now than 2-4 going into Georgia week.

(photo by Stan Jones)

South Carolina kickoff announced

by Barca Blog - SEC officials just announced that Vanderbilt's game against South Carolina on October 24 will kickoff at 6 p.m. CT in Columbia. The matchup will be televised by ESPNU.

Players of the Game - Army

by Barca Blog - Each week during the season, Vanderbilt's football staff recognizes outstanding player performances on the gridiron. Here's the list of honorees for the Army game:

Offensive Player of the Game
QB Larry Smith

Defensive Player of the Game
S Joel Caldwell

Specialist of the Game
K Ryan Fowler
RB Warren Norman

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Call-In Show Sunday night

by Barca Blog - The Bobby Johnson Call-In Show, presented by Martin and Zerfoss Insurance and Auto-Owners Insurance, is scheduled for Sunday night at 6:30 p.m. CT from the Holiday Inn Vanderbilt.

The show, which usually airs on Monday nights, was moved due to the Nashville Predators game against Edmonton.

If you can't make it to the event, you can listen live on Click Here

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Final: Army 16, Vanderbilt 13 (OT)

by Barca Blog - Click Here for complete postgame coverage of Vanderbilt's disappointing 16-13 loss to Army in overtime Saturday at Michie Stadium. (photo by Stan Jones)

Live from Michie Stadium

by Barca Blog - Here's a picture of Michie Stadium from my seat in the press box. (click image to make bigger)

According to

Only 15 FBS stadiums, and just six located east of the Mississippi River, are older than fabled Michie Stadium (1924). The original stadium structure was formally dedicated to the memory of Dennis Mahan Michie, who was instrumental in starting the game of football at the U.S. Military Academy in 1890. It was Michie who organized, managed and coached the first football team in history at West Point.

Army football's history and tradition is rivaled by few with three national championships (1944-46) and three Heisman Trophy winners to its credit. The Academy will honor one of its greats, three-time All-American and Heisman winner Felix "Doc" Blanchard, by retiring his number at halftime today.

You can follow today's matchup with the Black Knights (11 a.m. CT) on Click for Gameday Central

Army Gameday Prep

Vanderbilt (2-3, 0-3 SEC) at Army (2-3)

Kickoff: 11 a.m. CT

Location: Michie Stadium (40,000) in West Point, N.Y.

TV: CBS College Sports (Ryan, Sehorn), GamePlan not available

Radio: 104.5 the Zone, XM 141, Sirius 215 (More affiliates)

Web: Webcast, Live Audio, Live Stats, Twitter

Weather: High 66/Low 43/10% Chance of Rain

Series: VU leads 4-3 (VU leads 3-1 in West Point)

Last Meeting:Vanderbilt 41, Army 10 (1991)

Commodore Gameday Central: Click Here

Other Games in the SEC (CT): Live Scores
No. 17 Auburn at Arkansas - 11 a.m. (ESPN)
Georgia at Tennessee - 11:21 a.m. (SEC Network)
Houston at Mississippi State - 11:30 a.m. (ESPNU)
Kentucky at No. 25 South Carolina - 11:30 a.m. (FSN)
No. 3 Alabama at No. 20 Ole Miss - 2:30 p.m. (CBS)
No. 1 Florida at No. 4 LSU - 7 p.m. (CBS)

Friday, October 9, 2009

Fall Baseball Update

by Eric Jones - It's hard to pass up a 75 degree day in October with Hawkins Field right across the street from the McGugin Center.

With the Black and Gold Series starting in just a week, I thought I might check out the Commodore baseball scrimmage on Thursday. It turned out to be the closest I got to a Cape Cod summer. There are a good many new faces to learn and as many nicknames to ponder. Today was all about names that you may have heard as veteran pitching highlighted the six-inning intrasquad that ended 4-2. Sophomore Jack Armstrong continued to build off of a very strong summer pitching for Wareham in the Cape Cod League (4-1, 2.57 ERA, 31K in 35 IP). Jack combined with Taylor Hill (2-1, 1.44 ERA, 35K in 31.1IP for Chatham in the Cape) for an impressive performance. In a three-inning start, Armstrong brought the heat striking out 4 including the side to get out of a bases-loaded jam in the second inning. Armstrong was followed by Hill who retired all nine batters he faced with four punchouts to preserve the win.

Richie Goodenow started on the other side of the scorecard working three solid innings, but was victimized by some defensive miscues which allowed two unearned runs. Russell Brewer followed Richie to the mound and threw three scoreless innings with two strikeouts. Brewer was another top summer performer in the Cape where he teamed with Taylor Hill at Chatham. As closer, Russell was 2-1, with a 1.90 ERA and 33K's in 23.1 innings while finishing second in the entire Cape Cod League with 10 saves. The bottom line on this particular day - the summer seems to have been good for Commodore pitching. You can check out all the Commodore who played in the CCL and their summer stats ( for yourself.

Another New England Nugget: Freshman Regan Flaherty started at first base and went 2-for-2 with an RBI single and a double. His lefthanded swing is similar to his brother Ryan's and the speed (or lack thereof) was also evident as he got thrown out by homeplate umpire Sonny Gray trying to score from second on a Jordan Wormsley single.

I was just happy that Sonny Gray didn't throw his valuable right arm out of his socket when he called Flaherty out at the plate. Sonny has been watching too many Kimbo Slice snippets on YouTube.

Black and Gold Series: The Black and Gold Series will start on Thursday, October 15. Tim Corbin announced yesterday that the annual fall event will be going to a five-game series: October 15, 16, 18, 19, and 20. All games are scheduled to be broadcast via live audio on Stay tuned for times.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Women's Basketball preseason photo shoot

by Barca Blog - As I promised the other day, here's a preseason photo gallery of the 2009-10 Vanderbilt women's basketball team. View John Russell's Pictures

And don't forget, women's basketball season tickets start at only $32. Reserve your seats today by clicking here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Tim Corbin Speaks at Mt. Juliet Rotary

by Eric Jones - Head baseball coach Tim Corbin took a break from his daily morning ritual of eating at Waffle House to speak at the Mt. Juliet Breakfast Rotary on Tuesday morning at Victory Baptist Church. He's even getting comfortable in the community as he braved the backroads to his destination some 19 miles from Hawkins Field. The appearance in Mt. Juliet is one of several speaking engagements that Corbin will do in the off-season. If you haven't gotten a chance to hear him speak, put it on your bucketlist to do.

It is always easy to hear the pride in Corbin's telling and re-telling of the stories of David Price's maturation as well as Sonny Gray's emergence as a leader on and off the field for the Dores. Corbin gets high marks for not only winning on the field, but for his ability during the recruiting process to find student-athletes with high character.

Incidently, Mt. Juliet has become a mini-pipeline for the Vanderbilt Baseball program in recent years. The brothers Shao, Matt and Stephen, were among the first in the Corbin era to contribute from Mt. Juliet High School. Caleb Cotham, a 2006 MJHS alumn, emerged to lead the Dores in wins (7) last year, while limiting opponents to a .222 batting average which was also tops on the staff. His loss will be felt in the weekend rotation after he signed in August with the Yankees as their fifth overall pick. Taylor Hill, fresh off of an impressive summer in the Cape pitching for Chatham, may be poised to take over for his prep and college teammate as the next Mt. Juliet product to shine on the diamond, perhaps even as an SEC weekend starter.

Nashville ranked among best sports cities

Press release courtesy of Sporting News

Nashville takes its place among the elite at No. 12 in the Best Sports Cities rankings released by Sporting News on Tuesday afternoon.

“Nashville is an underrated sports town,” said Sporting News chief of correspondents Bob Hille, who has coordinated the rankings since their expansion 13 years ago. “Everyone knows about the Titans, who had a great season in 2008, but there’s NHL hockey with the Predators, and pretty darn good college football and basketball in the city, too.”

This year’s Best Sports Cities list features almost 400 cities and towns in the U.S. and Canada, ranked by a system that assigns points to a variety of categories, including a city’s number of teams, their regular-season won-lost records, playoff berths, bowl appearances and tournament bids, championships, applicable power ratings, fan fervor, attendance and more.

The full list can be found by clicking here.

SEC Football Week 6 Matchups

Click Here for's Preview; All Times Central

Saturday, October 10

Vanderbilt (2-3, 0-3) at Army (2-3)
11 a.m.; CBS College Sports (Ryan and Sehorn)

No. 17 Auburn (5-0, 2-0) at Arkansas (2-2, 0-2)
11 a.m.; ESPN (Griese, Spielman and Pasch)

Georgia (3-2, 2-1) at Tennessee (2-3, 0-2)
11:21 a.m.; SEC Network (Neal, Ware and Capuano)

Houston (3-1) at Mississippi State (2-3, 1-2)
11:30 a.m.; ESPNU (Collins and Huard)

Kentucky (2-2, 0-2) at No. 25 South Carolina (4-1, 1-1)
11:30 a.m.; FSN (Rathbun, Archer and Hildreth)

No. 3 Alabama (5-0, 2-0) at No. 20 Ole Miss (3-1, 1-1)
2:30 p.m.; CBS (Bolerjack, Beuerlein)

No. 1 Florida (4-0, 2-0) at No. 4 LSU (5-0, 3-0)
7 p.m.; CBS (Lundquist, Danielson and Wolfson)

Where in the world...

by Barca Blog - Former Vanderbilt guard Dan Cage sent me an email last week with a list of former Commodores that are playing overseas this season.

Ross Neltner and Corey Smith - Finland
Shan Foster and Alex Gordon - Turkey
Dawid Przybyszewski - Poland
Dan Cage - Spain
Matt Freije - Lebanon
Julian Terrell - Portugal
Alan Metcalfe - England
Dan Langhi - Puerto Rico

The best place to track these guys is at If anyone out there knows the status of any other Commodores still playing professional basketball, please let me know.

(Note: I mentioned it in the blog a few days ago... Derrick Byars is trying to make the Chicago Bulls opening day roster.)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Men's Basketball preseason photo shoot

by Barca Blog - With men's basketball practice less than 10 days away, I decided to go through John Russell's photos from the Commodores' recent preseason media guide/poster shoot.

Click here to get your first look at the 2009-10 team including images of Vanderbilt's only incoming freshman, guard John Jenkins. Check back for a gallery on the women's basketball team in the next few days.

(Don't forget... men's basketball season tickets start at only $104. Reserve your seats before it's too late.)

How to watch the Army game

by Barca Blog - The Vanderbilt-Army game on Saturday (11 a.m. CT) will be available to Commodore fans with access to either DirecTV and Dish Network.

The game, broadcast by the CBS College Sports Network, will be shown on channel 613 on DirecTV and channel 152 on Dish Network. It will not available to Comcast subscribers in Middle Tennessee.

CBS College Sports will also offer the game via online pay-per-view for $14.95 in All Access.

GQ Model

By Travis Young - While its a cool and rainy day on West End right now, I thought I would share a photo of a Vanderbilt Athletic Communications staffer that I found in the latest GQ magazine. At first some people had mistaken him for Tom Brady's replacement but Tom was unable to attend due to his Sunday game against the Ravens. The first person to guess the celebrity below will receive a prize courtesy of Vanderbilt Athletics.

Monday, October 5, 2009

WBB teaches healthy habits

By Weinman - Three seniors from the women's basketball team -- Lauren Lueders, Merideth Marsh and Jessica Mooney -- headed to Coopertown Middle School in Robertson County this morning to deliver a quick message about healthy habits during a Children's Health Week presentation.

A few hundred kids in grades four through eight got advice on staying hydrating, getting plenty of sleep and making smart eating choices. The Commodores also asked some healthy eating trivia questions (What fruit has 200 seeds on every piece...? Answered in the Photo Gallery), taught the children some pre-activity stretches and hosted a quick relay race.

For excerpts from each of the student-athletes' presentations and highlights of the relay race, check out the following video:

Week 6 Injury Report

by Barca Blog - Head coach Bobby Johnson gave an update on a couple of Commodore injuries during his Monday media session.

"I think Sean Richardson (torn tendon) will be able to play. He played a little bit against Ole Miss.

"John Cole (broken hand) might have a chance to play. It's just going to depend on how much he can tolerate with the ball hitting his hand.

"Steven Stone (broken foot) is not ready to come back.

"Zac Stacy (sprained ankle) is feeling better but I don't think he's ready to come back."

Watch Johnson's entire press conference by clicking here.

Week 5 Game Notes and Depth Charts

by Barca Blog - I just posted Vanderbilt's and Army's game notes and depth charts on our Gameday Central page.

Go here and look at the drop down menu underneath the team logos of the left side of the page.

NFL Week 4 Recap

by Barca Blog - Check out how these former Commodores performed in Week 4 of the 2009 NFL season:

Chicago Bears: Defeated Detroit, 48-24
QB Jay Cutler - Started, 18-28 passing, 141 yds, 2 TD
OL Chris Williams - Started at right tackle
WR Earl Bennett - Started, Rec 2-32, Punt returns 4-63
LB Hunter Hillenmeyer - Inactive
DB D.J. Moore - Inactive

Tennessee Titans: Lost to Jacksonville, 37-17
DT Jovan Haye - Started, One tackle

Buffalo Bills: Lost to Miami, 38-10
LB Marcus Buggs - Started, Nine tackles

Washington Redskins: Defeated Tampa Bay, 16-13
TE Todd Yoder - Played but no stats recorded

New York Giants: Defeated Kansas City, 27-16
LB Jonathan Goff - One tackle on special teams

Finishing drives

by Barca Blog - Although Vanderbilt ranked near the bottom of the nation in total offense last season, they were able to put points on the board when given the opportunity, something this year's team has struggled to do so far.

The difference has been execution in the red zone. The Commodores have been their own worst enemy, killing themselves with unforced errors at critical times. You name it, it's happened: penalties, fumbled snaps, dropped passes, turnovers, missed field goals, and so on.

"We have moments where we get our offense going, and then we hurt ourselves," center Bradley Vierling said of the Commodores three losses, all in conference play. "It's kind of been the staple of every loss we've had. We definitely have opportunities to win, but we're not taking advantage of the opportunities when they're given to us."

Through five games, VU ranks last in the SEC in red zone efficiency (14-of-21, 66.7%), while the 2008 squad finished the season third in the conference (31-for-35, 88.6%). In Saturday's 23-7 loss to Ole Miss, the 'Dores had several chances to mount a comeback but couldn't overcome a 1-for-5 effort on trips inside the 20.

"We definitely need to started putting it in," Vierling added. "Three points is not enough in the SEC. We need to go down there and get six consistently. We were atrocious in the red zone (against Ole Miss) and that trend needs to stop."

Video of the Day: If you were too frustrated to get behind the wheel after Saturday's loss, you might have wondered, "Who's gonna drive me home?"

Georgia kickoff time announced

by Barca Blog - Just announced by conference officials... Vanderbilt's homecoming game against Georgia on October 17 will kickoff at 11:20 a.m. on the SEC Network.

This will be the Commodores' first home game during the day in 2009. Tickets are still available - click here to purchase.

Players of the Game - Ole Miss

by Barca Blog - Each week during the season, Vanderbilt's football staff recognizes outstanding player performances on the gridiron. Here's the list of honorees for the Ole Miss game:

Offensive Player of the Game
RB Warren Norman

Defensive Player of the Game
S/LB Brent Trice

Specialist of the Game
RB Warren Norman

(photo by John Russell)