Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wrappings up the '00's and looking ahead to the '10's

We asked several poll questions over the last week strolling down memory lane for the previous decade in Vanderbilt sports. Some of the results, especially David Price winning Player of the Decade, surprised me. Still, as much fun as it was to look back, I figured I'd wrap up the series by looking ahead and listing out the goals I have for the athletic programs in this new decade. I'd encourage you all to do the same.


Making it to to our first bowl game since 1982, and winning our first since 1955 was a big accomplishment. Vanderbilt, despite a disappointing season this past year, is not getting a level of respect that had be lacking for some time. However, respect is not enough. My goal for this team is 4 winning (or at least non-losing seasons) in the next 10 years. Moreover, I'd love us to get an invite for a bowl outside the State of Tennessee, or associated with a platitude (i.e. "Liberty" or "Independence") or Pizza (Papa John's). I'd hope to have 3 first round draft picks, and have a presence in the NFL outside the Chicago Commobears.

Men's Basketball

This should be the decade where Vanderbilt strives to be a Top-25 mainstay. This decade's goal should be at least 7 NCAA appearances, 3 trips to the Sweet Sixteen, and at least 1 trip to the Elite Eight. Vanderbilt would also be well served by some NBA love, with some of our players not only getting drafted, but also playing. Right now, I think there are 4 guys on this year's squad that could play (or will be able to play with more time to develop): Jeffrey Taylor, Jeff Jenkins, A.J. Ogilvy, and Festus Ezeli.


Tim Corbin has built a nice program, but it's time to take the next step. This should be the decade where Vanderbilt strives to make 9 NCAA appearances, hosts a Super Regional, and makes at least 2 trips to Omaha for the College World Series. Make no mistake about it, this is the program in the best position be to a national powerhouse. Hopefully this is the decade where that happens.

Women's Basketball

I'll be the first to admit that I know very little about women's basketball. I know Coach Melanie Balcomb has done a good job recruiting talent and putting a good product out on the court. Still, I'd like to see more. This should be the decade of at least 2 Elite Eights and a Final Four. The Women's Final Four is coming to Nashville 2014, what better way to celebrate than with the Commodores making the trip down Broadway.

Other Sports/Goals

I don't mean to diminish the accomplishments of the women's bowling team. They are, after all, our only National Champions. And, while I'd love their dominance to continue and hang a few more banners wherever one hangs Bowling National Championship banners, this would be a great decade for another one of the sports (tennis or golf, men's or women's, for example) to join the pinsters with a banner.

What do you think, VSL Nation? What are your goals for the program in this new decade?


Chuck Heston said...

Men's Basketball - I think that Kevin Stallings has turned the program into a Top 25 contender on a consistent basis. There's always been a question as to how long he stays until taking a higher profile coaching job. To his credit, I think he's turned the Vandy coaching job into an attractive one for other D-I coaches. That being said, if he were to leave, I would expect several years of sub-par teams.

Football - My biggest hope for the football squad is that they realize that they play for the toughest conf. in the nation and therefore don't need to schedule teams like GA Tech to bulk up their non-conf. schedule. Honestly, guys no need to schedule Top 25 teams when you have the possibility of facing FL and LSU.

Anonymous said...

If those four can play in the league then BEAL sure as H... can!