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11 September 2007

Game Week discussion with Vandy fans

(1) How is your QB? Do you think he will be ready to play this Sat?

He has a hamstring injury, I suspect that he will be able to play on Saturday. The fact that he was allowed to take a 2nd half snap last week makes me think that the injury does not seem that serious, and although it had a dramatic impact on his performance last week, could heal more quickly than most hamstring injuries.--Jake.Lowery

Nickson's hamstring has been a nagging injury for at least a year and a half. I don't know if he will be ready. I hope that Adams will get some serious practice time and expect him to be more ready to come in.--mrcommodore

Don't know yet. He has his moments as a passer, but he is really a dynamic offensive threat when he can add his scrambling ability.--Commodoredave1

I hope he is healthy, but I hope he doesn't start. If last week is any indication, he has continued his trend of having terrible accuracy. He's a phenomenal athlete, but any team that has a decent front 7 will beat us because we'll have no offense.--DallasDore

(2) What are your Key players and why should we be concerned about them?

Earl Bennett is someone you likely already know about. Sean Walker continues to prove himself as a solid reciever and deep threat, you should be concerned about his speed and his hands. Jeff Jennings has re-emerged from last year's medical redshirt and shown himself to be the best VU back, you should be concerned if our coaching staff treats him like a featured back and not merely half of a platoon. On defense, Reshard Langford is a 3rd year starter who performed well last week despite a rib injury. Jon Goff at LB you likely already know about. Marcus Buggs is another linebacker who continues to emerge at Vandy, you should be concerned about his speed of persuit and ability to see where he needs to go to make a play. On our offensive line, Chris Williams at LT continues to post all-American calibur play week after week.--Jake.Lowery

Key players are all those you would expect; I won't add anything.--mrcommodore

Bennett had a huge game vs Ole MS last season with the backup QB playing. He's obviously the #1 threat. If Nickson is healthy and can run, Ole MS has major problems stopping those two considering their failure against Memphis and Missouri.--Commodoredave1

Key players are our MLB Goff (1st team all-SEC) and our D-line, which showed a few flashes against Bama. Bama has the best OLT in the country (Andre Smith) and a decent rest of O-line, and we still managed to get some pressure on.On offense, we need to be able to run behind our line. Our line will have at least 4 senior starters, including all-SEC OT Chris Williams. They need to put up this week.--DallasDore

(3)Grant ran for 173 yards against your defense last week. BenJarvis Green-Ellis ran for 226 yards against Missouri. Tell us about your D-line and what you guys will try to do this week to stop the run.

Our DEs are better pass-rushers than run-stoppers, and our DT is a very thin position that relies heavily on a healthy Theo Horrocks. The bigger problem last week, relative to our expectations, was that our linebackers had a tough time making stops before Grant got to the third level. To stop the run next week, I expect our linebackers to do a better job of wrapping up and making tackles. Execution must improve. --Jake.Lowery

I think our D-line is lot better than the stats from vs. Bama show. No D-line, with our depth, can hold up against the run that many times when the offense continues to fail to produce -- it's demoralizing, and of course tiring. So I think the D-line's performance will be very much linked with our QB's performance.--mrcommodore

Grant looks like a star to me. I know BGE is a good inside runner and that is of particular concern with Horrocks ailing. The coaches will get the Memphis tape and see what they did. Also I don't think we'll be up 35-7 at any point so going soft isn't a concern.--Commodoredave1

Grant was really good. Bama had to run toward the end of the game when our D was absolutely bushed. In that sense, I think the 173 yards was a bit of an abberation. It was more a product of our offense not having a drive of more than 6 plays until the fourth quarter. Our D-line should be fine, but I don't know enough about OM's o-line to have an opinion at this point.--DallasDore

(4) Please fill in the rest of this sentence: Vandy will win if ________

Vandy will win if we hold Green-Ellis under 125 yards, avoid red-zone turnovers, and do not make egregious special-teams mistakes.--Jake.Lowery

Vandy will win if the our QBs combine to complete more than half of their passes.--mrcommodore

They don't lose the turnover and special teams battles by a wide margin (big if). Anything close to even should do, but we always find a way to blow it against Ole MS, even when we control the game start to finish. Vandy also needs a healthy Nickson.--Commodoredave1

Vandy will win if: we have good numbers in the passing game. We have a really good team, but no team in the country can win a competitive game if their QB can't hit the broad side of a barn. End of story. We should win this game, but I'm afraid that Nickson might play--and if OM has any kind of defense at all, we're in trouble.--DallasDore

(5) Please tell us your prediction.

I think the staff will watch the QB situation carefully and hopefully have a better plan B for if Nickson struggles. With a healthy Nickson, I say 27-17 Vandy. If Nickson is a little off, then it's pick'em. If Nickson doesn't play at all, then 17-13 Ole Miss. Unfortunately I think pick'em is most likely.--mrcommodore

I'll withhold my prediction until I know the injury situations with Nickson and Kirchoffer (sp?). If Nickson goes, I can't predict without knowing how OM's defense is. If someone else is the starter, then I'll go with Vandy in the usual close game, probably a bit sloppy, and not very high scoring.--DallasDore

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