Sensing weakness in Knoxville, Vanderbilt makes a play to become the preeminent football program in the state.
Vanderbilt announced a $300 million project Monday to improve football and basketball facilities and a new Vandy United Fund to raise money for athletics programs.
The Vandy United Fund already has $200 million committed with $100 million from the university along with $90 million from anonymous donors and another $10 million from John R. Ingram, a member of the Board of Trust and lead owner of MLS’ Nashville team.
Chancellor Daniel Diermeier said at a news conference that the Vandy United Fund represents the largest undertaking of its kind in Vanderbilt’s athletics history.
“This is a bold step,” he said, “but it’s also just the beginning of a longer journey.”
Athletic director Candice Lee said the initial work will focus on infrastructure for Vanderbilt’s athletes to improve their daily experience.
“There will be more things that come as a part of this broader scheme,” Lee said.
The first investment will be in football and basketball.
Football will get upgraded meeting rooms, offices, training room and expanded locker room and a full-length indoor practice field adjacent to the outdoor practice fields. Basketball will get dedicated practice courts for both the men’s and women’s teams, along with improvements to the weight room, locker rooms and offices.
I’m only being quasi-facetious. There’s little question which school is in better shape, financially speaking. It’s just that Vandy hasn’t been committed to football in a way to be relatively competitive.
No, I’m not predicting any SEC East titles in the near future, but it’s not like keeping up with Tennessee is that high a bar these days.
… I guess this may turn out to be the next best thing.
Then again, this is the SEC we’re talking about. A coherent approach to scheduling hasn’t been the conference’s strong suit for a while now.
This is a helluva thing to say ($$).
Matthew Butler isn’t new to this.
His freshman season at Tennessee wasn’t even over when the coach he signed to play for, Butch Jones, was fired.
Three years later, Butler watched underclassmen on the Vols roster deal with the same thing he went through his first season on Rocky Top.
“Let’s just be real here: I think that everybody, I don’t even think it would be an exaggeration to say that everybody, (but) I can only speak for my class, the 2017 class, the last class under Butch, has considered leaving,” Butler said. “Obviously.”
I’m not saying it’s not true. Just that it’s a helluva thing to say.
Hey, with regard to that whole “Georgia’s offense is ahead of Georgia’s defense” vibe, weren’t we saying the exact same thing in 2019? As I recall, that take didn’t age well.
I’m not saying history is doomed to repeat itself. For one thing, Todd Monken is no James Coley. But I’m not taking it for granted, either, at least until I see it on the playing field.
David Wunderlich takes a look back at how much Dan Mullen let his quarterbacks (before Trask, of course) run, in order to get some idea how often Florida’s presumed 2021 starter will carry the ball. He found an interesting pattern.
On the other, Mullen has a history of running his mobile quarterbacks a lot initially before backing off later. These rushing attempt figures don’t have sacks taken out because that information isn’t readily available for specific quarterbacks, but the differences in sacks allowed per game for any of the pairs of teams cited is less than one per contest. They’re not enough to change the gaps significantly.
- Tim Tebow: 16.2 rushing attempts per game in 2007, 12.6 in 2008
- Chris Relf: 15.0 per game in 2010, 11.2 in 2011
- Dak Prescott: 16.2 per game in 2014, 12.3 in 2015
- Nick Fitzgerald: 15.0 per game in 2016, 13.5 per game in 2017
Based on that, David thinks ten carries a game is a likely target for Emory Jones. Throw in pass attempts and that means about 55% of Florida’s plays on offense would run though Jones. (That’s actually less than Trask’s 2020 percentage.) I’d say if the Gators’ o-line isn’t improved, that’s not an improbable percentage.
… And with Jones gaining more than six yards per carry behind suspect offensive lines with a heavy run expectation the last two years, it’d be a strategic blunder not to have him carry the ball quite a bit while he throws far less often than his predecessor.
With five good options at running back, at least seven at receiver, and three or four at tight end, there will be plenty of guys around to help Jones from having to do everything himself. Still, if Mullen’s history as a play caller is any real indication, the nature of the offense he’ll be running means he’ll probably be into the low double digits in rushing attempts per game.
How do you know it’s 2021? Because a kid who committed to Georgia over the weekend cited Agent Muschamp as a reason for his choice.
“I feel like Coach Smart, Coach Muschamp, Coach Lanning and Coach Schumann are a great defensive core that our (sic) great defensive people,” Walker said. He’s a coach’s kid himself as his father is the head coach at Catawba College. “I feel like they can mold me into the linebacker that can make me achieve to the best of my ability and excel in the NFL if I have that chance.”
Boom, needless to say.
(And, yes, it feels good to pull that gif out of storage.)
Nestor Higuera is 5’5″. Nestor Higuera’s listed weight is 285 pounds.
Nestor Higuera kicked a game winning field goal as the clock expired.
That’s it. That’s the post.
Here are the Bangles, with a muscular cover of Simon and Garfunkle’s “Hazy Shade of Winter”.