Game Day Info:
When: Saturday September 8th @1130AM CT
Where: Vanderbilt University Nashville, Tennessee
Television Coverage: Lincoln Financial Group and free live video via Yahoo Sports.
BAMA Team Stats
Total Offense: 575ypg (9th) Total Defense: 247ypg (47th)
Points Per Game: 52ppg (15th) Points Per Game Allowed: 6ppg (19th)
Rushing Offense: 313 (18th) Rushing Yards Allowed: 76ypg (60th)
Passing Offense: 262 (52nd) Passing yards Allowed: 171ypg (88th)
BAMA Key Stats and Personnel
Passing: John Parker Wilson (17-25, 189)
Rushing: Terry Grant (18-134, 3td), Glenn Coffee (9-76, 1td), Roy Upchurch (6-55, 1td)
Receiving: Nick Walker (5-40, 1td), D.J. Hall (4-52), Earl Alexander (4-40)
Vandy team Stats
Total Offense: 446ypg (55th) Total Defense: 310ypg (89th)
Points Per Game: 41ppg (37th) Points Per Game Allowed: 17ppg (84th)
Rushing Offense: 162ypg (100th) Rush Defense: 149ypg (120th)
Passing Offense: 284ypg (38th) Pass Defense: 161ypg (84th)
Vandy Key Stats and Personnel
Passing: Chris Nickson (19-24, 284, 4td)
Rushing: Jeff Jennings (11-67, 1td)
Receiving: Earl Bennett (13-223, 3td), Sean Walker (2-34)
BAMA Quick Hits
BAMA comes into Nashville fresh off a 52-6 drubbing of Western Carolina in its season opener. The offensive fireworks started early and often for the Tide with the offense scoring on its very first play from scrimmage. That was about the closest the game ever got as tailback Terry Grant and junior quarterback John Parker Wilson paced a Tide attack that rolled up an impressive 575 yards of total offense.
Grant and Wilson were not the only play-makers however. Backup running backs Glenn Coffee and Roy Upchurch got significant playing time against the Catamounts and produced solid numbers, while both scoring a touchdown. In the passing game Tide quarterbacks managed to hit 12 different players with D.J. Hall, tight end Nick Walker and Earl Alexander leading the way.
Defensively the Tide played well enough to hold Western Carolina to only 6 points and less than 250 yards of total offense, though Vandy's offense should provide BAMA coaches with a much more accurate barometer of where the team is at defensively at this point in the season.
Tide Player Vandy Must Focus On: John Parker Wilson is considered by many to be the best quarterback in the SEC West. If Vandy can't find a way to disrupt Wilson and his receivers it will be a long day for the Commodore defense.
BAMA Will Win If: BAMA's offense should be unstoppable on Saturday. A mediocre Vandy defense coupled with BAMA's overall talent edge is a bad combination for the 'Dores. BAMA will win if the defense can be anything short of terrible on Saturday. If the defense shines, it gets ugly.
Vandy Quick Hits
Vandy comes into the game looking to keep its momentum going and hoping to start the year 2-0 with a win over Nick Saban's BAMA team. While Jay Cutler is long gone Bobby Johnson has done a nice job in developing Cutler's replacement, Chris Nickson into a serviceable SEC starter. Nickson's favorite target is All-SEC (and possible All-American this year) wide receiver Earl Bennett. The Nickson/Bennett combo put up spectacular numbers in their season-opener against Richmond as they hooked up for 3 scores. Bennett's overall numbers were monstrous as he finished the game hauling in 13 passes for over 220 yards to go with the 3 scores.
The ground game is business-like and blue-collar if nothing else. 'Dore backs carried the rock 35 times against Richmond while racking up 162 yards and a score.
Defensively the team is average at best by SEC standards, as evidenced by the 17 points and 310 yards given up against Richmond last weekend. They did manage to pick off 3 passes though, and that is an encouraging sign for Vandy coaches considering the secondary was considered a liability going into the season.
The player to watch on defense is senior middle linebacker Jonathan Goff. The undisputed leader of the Vanderbilt defense did nothing to disappoint in his first game of the season, racking up 7 tackles and an interception.
Player BAMA Must Focus On: Wide receiver Earl Bennett is a dynamic play-maker and one of the best wide receivers in the country. He also returns kicks, giving the BAMA staff plenty of potential problems to worry about this weekend. If Bennett has anything similar to the game he had against Richmond, BAMA is in trouble.
Vandy Will Win If: Honestly, Vandy's only hope of winning is continued spectacular play from its money combo of Nickson/Bennett. The defense isn't going to stop BAMA on a consistent basis and the game could turn into a shootout. If the duo has a game similar to that against Richmond Vanderbilt could pull the upset.