Don’t get too excited by the Vanderbilt Commodores just yet. Remember, they started 3-0 last year and then had a historic blowout loss to the Alabama Crimson Tide that wrecked them for the rest of the season. Starting this year, though, they look pretty solid.
Blowout wins over the MTSU Blue Raiders and the Nevada Wolf Pack gives them two victories over FBS opponents, which puts them above anybody on the list so far that we’ve named. That’s why they are No. 8 in our SEC Power Rankings.
Just like how they started last year, the defense appears to be gelling right now. Meanwhile, the offense is humming with Kyle Shurmur. So Derek Mason clearly has the identity he wants in Nashville. The question is whether or not he can keep it up.
Vandy gets its first real test this week by facing the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on the road. This is a very good Notre Dame team as well, so just playing them close would earn them respect. Winning the game would put this program on a whole different level.
If they lose, though, they’ll have the chance to right the ship at home against the South Carolina Gamecocks, and after that they host Tennessee State. There are plenty of chances for this team to get to six wins this year. Right now, they are in the middle of the pack of the league. A win on Saturday would shoot them up. A loss wouldn’t do that much, but other teams will have chances to move up and past them.