Unless our record books are lying — we’re not going to deny that they’re dusty and maybe the spine is a little flimsy — that’s not a typo.
Vanderbilt has its first nine-win season since 1915 thanks to a commanding 38-24 win over North Carolina State in the Music City Bowl. Commodores running back Zac Stacy put an exclamation point on his outstanding career with 107 yards and a touchdown while operating many snaps out of the the Wildcat package.
Vandy quarterback Jordan Rodgers also threw for two touchdowns, but just 108 yards. In all, Vanderbilt had just 225 yards of offense. So what’s with the 38 points? Five turnovers probably had something to do with that. The ‘Dores had four of their 15 drives start 60 yards or less from the opposing end zone, scoring on two.
So while Vanderbilt didn’t have an offensive show to match the points, it was an impressive stamp on the program’s best season in nearly a century. That was helped in part by the fact the ‘Dores didn’t beat anybody in the regular season with a winning record (Ole Miss is the closest at 6-6).
If Vandy wants to continue to make strides (or moves on the ladies) under coach James Franklin, it needs a signature win in 2013. This team had an opportunity in Week 1 against South Carolina and couldn’t get it done. Does that change next year?
One of the more underrated storylines heading into Week 6 continued its tack of uncertainty Tuesday.
During the first quarter of Florida State’s win over Wake Forest this past Saturday, Dalvin Cook tweaked his hamstring and didn’t return to the contest. The sophomore running back was initially labeled as day-to-day for this weekend’s game against Miami, and that hasn’t changed as Jimbo Fisher reaffirmed that Cook’s status for the in-state rivalry game remains up in the air.
“We’ll keep waiting,” the head coach said, adding that, because of Cook’s knowledge of the offense, he could sit out of practice the entire week and still take the field against the Hurricanes.
“He knows what to do, you can keep him healthy and do that there’s no doubt about that,” Fisher said.
Cook is far and away FSU’s leading rusher, with his 142.5 yards per game good for eight in the country and his six rushing touchdowns tied for 20th. The Seminoles’ No. 2 rusher, Mario Pender, is still dealing with the aftereffects of a collapsed lung that will sideline him for at least another week.
Oklahoma State’s defense has taken what will likely prove to be a very significant and impactful blow.
On Twitter as well as Instagram late Tuesday night, Ryan Simmons announced that he “recently tore my MCL & PCL which will require surgery.” As a result, Simmons, who was injured in the Week 5 win over Kansas State, will miss the remainder of the 2015 season, even as OSU has yet to officially confirm the linebacker’s status moving forward.
Because Simmons is a senior, and this is his final season of eligibility, the end of his 2015 season would also mean the end of his collegiate career.
Simmons has started the last 31 games for the Cowboys. He was second on the team in tackles last season, and his 26 career tackles for loss makes him OSU’s active leader in that category as well.
On his official bio, it’s written that Simmons is “[o]ne of the unquestioned leaders of the team, both on and off the field.”