Monday, October 5, 2009

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?"

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