Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Plea to All Vanderbilt Fans: Get There Early for the Game This Weekend

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.


Anonymous said...

Well said

Anonymous said...

Well said.... This game is an also an opportunity for the players to make a statement game to UGA and the SEC east in general. Most observers expect UGA to just march into Vandy and leave with a 21 point win; with SC and Ala behind us, I feel different this season. No doubt that UGA coach MR already warned his players, but I see a golden opportunity here for the Dores. As much as I have supported LS, this seems the ideal situation to allow Rogers to prove if he can lead this team on offense. I think our guys have bought in to CJF and badly want to send a message to the college football world (and the sec east) that they should be taken more serious. An upset of UGA would be great for recruiting and almost ensure a bowl season with the upcoming schedule. I expect the defense to play well but we need a breakout game by the offense (at leaste 24 points) and likely a major play or 2 by special teams. We especially need the O-line to play well. UGA is vulnerable some many respects. The O-line needs to try to control the line to get 3rd down conversions and give the qb time to make his reads. This could be a signature win for the program. Go Dores !

vandygal78 said...

This is the upset I picked for the year. We WILL win this game. I'm flying down and bringing my 14 year old. Memorial Madness and a Vandy victory - what an awesome weekend this will be.

The Godfather said...

Very true on the recruiting aspect. As a Virginia Tech fan, I have seen Vanderbilt pop up A LOT in articles about recruits. As I have discussed with Seamus, guys Tech go after choose Vandy over VT (Lafonte even decommitted from the Hokies) or we see one of our players who listed Vanderbilt among his finalists. We have never been going after the same recruits. It's not because Tech has increased their recruiting footprint, but rather Vandy has increased its recruiting territory.
As for the atmosphere, this pops up in every single recruit interview I read about an official visit. It isn't so much whether the team wins or not, but rather the atmosphere and experience. If they see a great game day atmosphere, then a win is just icing on the cake.
Go Dores!