Monday, April 12, 2010
Reviewing Vanderbilt's spring scrimmage
By ESPN.com staff
Watching Vanderbilt on offense last season was painful.
Who could blame coach Bobby Johnson if he had flashbacks Saturday during the Commodores' Black & Gold scrimmage at Vanderbilt Stadium?
Vanderbilt's offense went 13 possessions and didn't score a touchdown. Finally, on the 14th and final possession, fifth-team quarterback Matt Casas threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to Tray Herndon to end the drought.
Afterward, Johnson was his usual candid and honest self.
"Sometimes, it was inexcusable. We should have gotten the ball into the end zone," Johnson said.
It's obvious the Commodores have a long way to go offensively if they're going to make significant strides from last season when they managed just five offensive touchdowns in eight SEC games.
The first thing they need to do is get everybody back up front offensively. Tackles Ryan Seymour and James Williams were out this spring with injuries.
There's still no definitive answer at quarterback, although junior Larry Smith looks like the guy to beat. Jared Funk pushed him at times this spring, and junior college newcomer Jordan Rodgers thinks he will be more of a factor in the fall once he gets up to speed mentally.
The flip side to the offense's struggles is that Vanderbilt again looks to be solid defensively. Redshirt freshman defensive end Walker May capped an outstanding spring with two sacks and two quarterback hurries. Keeping him off the field this fall will be difficult.