Vanderbilt football visits Missouri on Saturday in Columbia, Mo. Here are your three keys to a Vanderbilt victory.
By Don Yates
1. Slow down Rountree
Larry Rountree is a 5-foot-10, 210 pound senior running back for the Tigers. He’s a running back that can run around or over opponents. Rountree is the second career rusher in Mizzou football history with 3,238 yards. So far this season Rountree has run for 490 yards and five touchdowns. Those may not seem like extraordinary season stats but Rountree rarely loses yards. Averaging four yards a carry he can wear down a defense. Against Kentucky, he gained 126 yards on 37 rushes. You can bet the Tigers are going to run him early and often. The Vandy defense must not allow him to do his thing.
2. Win the turnover battle
So far this season the Commodores have turned the ball over 15 times while opponents have just seven. The only game in which Vandy has won the turnover battle was in the opener at Texas A&M, a game the ‘Dores came very close to winning. Over the past two games Vandy has done well in the turnover department with none against Kentucky and just one against Florida. In both those games the opponent had the same number of turnovers. When you look at the Mississippi State game a couple weeks ago and consider that Vandy had five turnovers to State’s zero but only lost by a touchdown you realize how far this Vandy team has come since earlier in the season. Vandy’s offense has improved significantly. If the Commdores can win the turnover battle on Saturday they’ll have a good shot at picking up their first win of the season.
3. A little more from Seals
Over the past two games freshman quarterback Ken Seals has thrown for a combined 44 of 69 completions for 534 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. Those are outstanding numbers for a true freshman. However, if the Commodores are to win a game this season they need for Seals to have the game of his life. Of course Seals’ supporting cast of blockers, runners and receivers have to do their part as well by having great games for Seals to achieve a game like that and get the ‘Dores a big win.
Saturday‘s game kicks off at 11:00 AM CT (12:00 PM ET). You can watch this Vanderbilt football game on the SEC Network.