I know, I know. It's tough. It's not traditional. It's something Vandy fans typically don't "do". During my stint as a Vandy student, I was hardly the most avid game-goer. My appearances would normally be around the 2nd half, if at all (never for basketball!). So believe me, for the college going readers and the recent alums, I know how tough it is to leave your friends and the tailgating refreshments to get to the game early, particularly when our history of football enthusiasm has been so poor. For the adult fans and the pre-college fans, I have no doubt that y'all get there as early as you can. With so many things going on, sometimes it can just be tough.
But I will say this. If there has ever been a more important weekend in Vanderbilt history in terms of recruiting, this is it. Unlike previous years, Coach Franklin has made a committment to competing with the rest of the SEC and the nation as a whole for top-shelf talent. He is not afraid to go after anyone, and he and his staff have worked very, very hard to get these kids interested in Vanderbilt. In no other state is this more apparent than in Georgia, where CJF has made massive in-roads in one of the best high school football states in the country. For a lot of these kids visiting this weekend (and we are talking some very high-level prospects), they are deciding whether to wear their black with Bulldog red or Commodore gold. This does NOT need to be a free recruiting visit for Mark Richt and his crew. It needs to be a show that this University and it's fan base is behind Coach Franklin, his players, his staff, and this team.
That being said, the stadium needs to be packed. The odds are stacked against the Commodores, but nothing will ever change unless we build the program through recruiting. These kids need to see the excitement for the University and for the team. They need to see a fan base that is thirsting for success in SEC football, and not a group that is jaded by years of misery. They need to see life in something that people have for so long pronounced as dead.
Therefore, VSL Nation, I implore you, if you are going to the game this weekend, get there an hour beforehand. Get loud at the warm-ups. Cheer your team going out of the gates. Let them know that criticism and constant badgering against a program that "doesn't belong" is a thing of the past. Show them that SEC football LIVES in Nashville, and it doesn't just live when another program comes through.
Thank you in advance for your support. We are on the cusp of something great.