Monday, September 29, 2008

Naval Intelligence: Two ranked teams on Dudley for first time since 1947

Last year, Mackenzie Adams was hoping to surprise an Auburn team that had struggled. This year, as two ranked teams play on Dudley Field for the first time since 1947, there will be no chance of a surprise. AP Photo from
For the first time since 1948, two ranked teams will take Dudley Field this Saturday when the No. 13/14 Auburn Tigers visit the No. 19/19 Vanderbilt Commodores.

The last time both the Commodores and their opponents were ranked was October 13, 1956, when the Black and Gold traveled to face the No. 7 Ole Miss Rebels in Oxford, Miss. The 'Dores lost, 0-16.

It was nine years earlier, on October 25, 1947, that Coach Red Sanders' Commodores hosted the No. 18 LSU Tigers on Dudley Field. Vanderbilt lost that game, too, 13-19.

The last time Vanderbilt won a game when both the Commodores and their opponent were ranked, however, was only two weeks prior to the LSU loss, on October 11, 1947, when the No. 18 Ole Miss Rebels lost to Vanderbilt 10-6.

The Commodores' No. 19 ranking, their 4-0 start, and their historic announcement by ESPN to broadcast from Nashville are just some of the stories making news in Commodore Country today:

Chris Low says that Vanderbilt has arrived in his weekly SEC Power Rankings, noting GameDay's upcoming appearance in Nashville (and he ranks us ahead of Auburn -- guess we know what his pick for Saturday's going to be).

Vanderbilt Athletics has details on the ESPN announcement.

T. Kyle King isn't sure why he did it, but he ranks Vanderbilt at No. 11 in the country (ahead of LSU (?!)).

Mike Huguenin calls Nashville the center of the Universe this week, and he has a good point: GameDay is in town this weekend, and then Belmont hosts the second Presidential debate between Sens. McCain and Obama next Friday (and just in case you're wondering, the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau wants you to know that Nashville currently has "ample availability of regular unleaded gas").

Evan Woodberry relays Tuberville's reasons for sidelining popular Auburn quarterback Kodi Burns (and S&S supports his sidelining if it means victory this Saturday).

PB "feels" like ranking Vanderbilt at no. 7 is too high, but he can't figure out who to put above us (Top 10?! what's going on, here, people?).

Maurice Patton learns that VU wasn't ESPN's first choice going into Week 5, but that the combination of Top 25 losses and Vanderbilt's "intrigue" and "buzz" helped make the decision for the self-titled "World-wide Leader in Sports" (Maurice also points out that ESPN is already in town scouting the Vanderbilt campus).

Tom Woods asserts that losing is a moral imperative and implores Bobby Johnson to restore Vanderbilt's heart-breaking, losing ways with haste (in one of the best pieces of satire I've ever read -- well done, Mr. Woods).

Brett Hait assures us that Coach Johnson is keeping things in perspective with a 90-minute meeting on Sunday to remind the 'Dores that it's not GameDay that makes this huge -- it's the possibility of a 5-0 start (remember your team motto, gentlemen: DWIT).

Steve Yanda thinks Auburn's defense will bail them out against the Dores (and he points out that Vanderbilt is averaging 10 more points-per-game than the Tigers).

Jake Curtis points out that No. 19 is our best rank since 1958, when the 'Dores were No. 15 (according to S&S research, since the AP Poll began to publish regularly in 1936, the 'Dores highest rank has been No. 10, which the Commodores held for two weeks in 1947 under Coach Red Sanders).

Dennis Dodd says Florida must beat VU in order to return to the Top 5 (he also points out that the road to the SEC East championship runs through Nashville right now).

Paul Gattis has a sneaky feeling about Vandy pulling an upset over Auburn this weekend (I hope his feeling is right -- but at this point, is it an "upset" for No. 19 to beat No. 13?).

The Hustler Editorial Board sees GameDay as an opportunity, and not just for the future of the football program (citing our "preppy fraternity scene" and "high academic standards" as keys to success -- in addition to "body paint and pastels" -- you know, folks, there are reasons we have the stereotypes we do).

Mike Kranzler notebooks the SEC, reveling in Yew Tee's 1-3 start.

Chip Towers says that VU is in the driver's seat for the SEC East, making me want to print this article out for posterity.

Matt Burrowes notes GameDay's appearance in Nashville and predicts that it won't ever happen again (so are Alabama fans going to start being obnoxious now that they're winning again?).

CharlesGoldberg tallies the numbers for Auburn so far this season.

Larry Burton asks whether Vanderbilt is building toward a bowl and takes a look at the decision to hire Bobby Johnson (he thinks that CBJ will be snatched up if he gets to a bowl).

Maurice Patton lets us in on a little-known fact: college coaches learn from each other, at least when they're not going to end up playing each other.

Brian Powell predicted GameDay would be coming to Vandy last week, and he took heat for it.

Needless to say, Brian is enjoying making his doubting commenters eat some humble pie this week.

Southern Saturdays has picked the Auburn-Vandy game to be its "game of the week," what with GameDay coming and all.

Mark Schalaback and Bruce Feldman predict which team goes to which bowl (Mark has us in Memphis against Tulsa for the Liberty Bowl, and Bruce sends us to Shreveport against Kansas State in the Independence Bowl).

Mike Rapp has a great summary of the ESPN-a-palooza descending upon Nashville and he also notes that Herbstreit is the only voter not to rank Vanderbilt in the Top 25 this week (guess we know who'll be picking whom on Saturday -- get ready to see Mr. C on Corso's head!).

Dimon Kendrick-Holmes notes that we haven't beaten Auburn since 1955 (they're the only team we've not beaten since 1982).

Dimon also notices a worrisome trend: Auburn tends to enjoy using Vanderbilt for a season-changing victory (remember last year's game?).

Dimon keeps up the good work with an analysis of Vanderbilt's opponents, and why they're building our resume.

Dimon also looks at VU as an underdog in most of its games this season.

It was an Auburn romp on the Plains last year, even though Vanderbilt fans had hope that the Tigers were beatable. Is history going to repeat itself in 2008? AP Photo.
Vegas has us as a 4-point underdog to Auburn this Saturday, but we're still 4-0 against the spread.

T. Kyle King puts us at No. 2 in the SEC (ahead of LSU -- wtf?).

Gamecock Man picks us as No. 3 in the SEC (and again, I'm starting to get dizzy).

Greg Viverito was worried about the optics with the crowd in Vanderbilt Stadium, but now he feels an energy on West End he's never felt before (he also speculates about where they'll end up putting the GameDay set).

Soda Pop sees a VU win placing us in command of the SEC East.

Tim Chavez sees recruiting implications for the GameDay broadcast (it's hard to disagree, in my opinion).

Monkey ranks Vanderbilt no. 20 and gets mentioned here because he knows to call us the "Harvard of the South" (he'll get higher billing if he learns that Harvard's actually the "Vanderbilt of the North").

Nik makes an analogy between cycling and Vanderbilt football though the connection seems tangential to me.

PhilipVU94 ranks Vanderbilt at No. 5 based on predictions, not accomplishments.

Philip is also torn about what's a bigger deal: Vandy hosting GameDay or going 4-0 for only the fourth time since World War II (answer? go with "not accomplished before").

Philip also has some great analysis of the relative divisional strength of the SEC's East and West (and makes a great point about the cross-divisional match-ups we've seen so far).

Jason makes great points about Auburn's defensive strengths and weakness with regard to Vanderbilt.

Jesus Quintana knows which hat Corso will wear when he comes to Nashville.

Stanimal makes a return to VSL and demands that Vanderbilt justify the hype (a great point, I might add).

Clay Travis is expecting big things from Vanderfans behind the GameDay set.

Power of Dixieland wants the Tigers to be careful, otherwise they might get beaten.

Paul Westerdawg says the end is near since VU is hosting GameDay (I think I'm going to start a tally for every time someone says the end is near or hell is freezing over about us -- they've been saying it every week since South Carolina).

Rob Robinson wonders if Clemson will try to steal Bobby Johnson should the 'Dores go to a bowl (it is his alma mater, after all).

SportsByBrooks is enjoying the Revenge of the Nerds as Vanderbilt, Duke, and Northwestern are a combined 12-1 (this would be the year that Duke decides to play tough ball).

Jay G. Tate gives occasion to this gem of a comment by an Auburn (or Alabama, even) fan: "well this will be an interesting game day scene. No will be there, as all of vanderbilts students will be in the library." Is that an insult? Should we correct their grammar? Or just feel sorry for them?

More awesome comments posted by Auburn fans: "Is no one as shocked by this as I am???? Vanderbilt is in first place in the SEC right now!!??? GameDay coming to Vandy? What? Are they really any good? We better find an offense this week or it may be a long day!" No comment, by me, is necessary.

Janelle Stokes reports Women Soccer's two losses from this weekend.


Ian smith said...

The two-color stripe, standard on Commodore pants from 2002 to 2006, has been removed, replaced with a Nike “swoosh” and the team’s official two-color “Star V” logo patch stitched on either hip.

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Rob Robinson said...

Thanks for this great collection of Commodore commentary. What a wild week!

The SEC East championship runs through Nashville right now.

Wow. Scary and perhaps moot, but true.

Is it an "upset" for No. 19 to beat No. 13?

I say yes. I love the Dores, but this is still Vandy.

Matt Burrowes notes GameDay's appearance in Nashville and predicts that it won't ever happen again

Who cares? I thought it would never happen.

I think I'm going to start a tally for every time someone says the end is near or hell is freezing over about us.

So true. I must have heard that a thousand times in September. I only said it a hundred myself. ;)