The Vanderbilt Commodore host Kentucky on Saturday at Vanderbilt Stadium. Here are your three keys to a Commodore win.
1) KEEP JOHNSON IN CHECK
Kentucky quarterback Stephen Johnson has almost single handily gotten the Wildcat program out of an under .500 rut. He's the guy that emerged after a musical chairs quarterback dilemma in Lexington. He is now "the man" and is the team's leading passer and second-leading rusher. He's a heady, fearless quarterback who is smart and has a knack for finding open running space. The Commodores must keep him under wraps and not allow him to burn the Black and Gold with a long pass or allow him to slip away for a long run.
2) WEBB HAS BIG GAME
Ralph Webb had a fine running game against Western Kentucky. No doubt that Derek Mason, who idolizes the young back, will want to give Webb the ball a lot, even though the Wildcats are pretty good at stopping the run and more vulnerable against the pass. Vandy needs for Webb to have another big game against the Big Kentucky. It won't be as easy as it was against WKU but it is a must if the 'Dores are to win.
3) SPECIAL TEAMS SHINE
Vandy special teams seem to have improved over the past couple games, for the most part. Minus the shove of the South Carolina punter well after he had punted, things have been pretty good. Tommy Openshaw hit a 39-yard field goal against WKU so that was very welcome news to the Commodore faithful. Vandy needs for the special teams to be special. If after the game we are not thinking about the special teams then things probably went well. They call special teams "special" because they aren't expected to make mistakes. Just like if you have a heart attack and call in a cardiologist you expect him to not make a mistake or it could hurt, a lot. The same is expected in football and missed extra points and field goals along with muffed punts and other blunders could also be related to many cardiologists lucrative careers.
Saturday's game kicks off at 3 pm CT and can be seen on the SEC Network.