Links: 09.23.2010 Edition

Lots of news to get to, including the commitment of the Commodores top basketball recruiting target, Kedren Johnson (after the break). -- UPDATE -- Today's Barca Break reminds me that the Rays-Yankees series finale is tonight and features another awesome David Price/CC Sabathia faceoff. Tim Kurkjian wrote an excellent feature on David Price, who in his eyes has grown from phenom to ace.

Football

VandySports.com - Three questions: Offense

Winning one for Robbie Caldwell - SEC Blog - ESPN

Kiper: Stock Watch - ESPN

Casey Hayward: Not only does the SEC boast two of the top five cornerback prospects in the 2012 class with LSU's Patrick Peterson and Florida's Janoris Jenkins, it also has one of the more underrated ones in Vanderbilt's Hayward.

Vanderbilt Commodores succeed with young players in secondary | tennessean.com | The Tennessean

Vanderbilt punter Richard Kent developing into weapon for Commodores | tennessean.com | The Tennessean

Of Kent's SEC-leading 25 punts, three have been returned a total of 5 yards — an average of 0.2 return yards per punt, also tops in the conference.

Vanderbilt Commodores remain upbeat after win at Ole Miss | tennessean.com | The Tennessean

Vanderbilt has early start at UCONN; Vols and LSU on CBS | tennessean.com | The Tennessean

Kickoff has been set for 11 a.m. CT for the Commodores' next game at Connecticut on Oct. 2. The game will be televised by the Big EastNetwork.

Commodores’ cryptic victory chant never gets old | Nashville City Paper

Quarterback Larry Smith, seen prominently shouting the chant in the clip, traced "Rufio" back more accurately. Each year, Vanderbilt freshmen participate in talent show-type skits as part of a teambuilding exercise. Smith and Bailey pieced together a Rufio-fused skit from two years ago that left the team rolling.

"Each year, being that we don’t do hazing at Vanderbilt, the freshmen come in and do skits for fun at the end of camp," Smith said. "They try and imitate coaches, other players, stuff like that. My sophomore year, DeAndre Jones had a funny skit and the whole team was like "Rufio, Rufio, Rufio!’ and it took off from there."

Commodores' quarterback, offense took big step with long drive | Nashville City Paper

VU's Smotherman looks beyond off week to get back on field | Nashville City Paper

Head coach Robbie Caldwell and Vanderbilt’s team physicians are optimistic that Smotherman will return after the team’s bye week. That would make the first game of his last Vanderbilt season a road matchup against Connecticut on Oct. 2.

"I’ve been itching to play some football," he said. "So beware, whoever I’m playing against, because I’m ready to hit somebody."

Scout.com: Commitment Spotlight: Mitchell Hester

MORAL VICTORY!: Vanderbilt ranked No. 1 in nation in red zone efficiency... sort of

Basketball

Marshall County Tribune: Local News: Kedren Johnson commits to Vanderbilt (09/22/10)

Excellent photo of the announcement ceremony.

The story goes that Kedren first singled out the Louisville hat and thanked Coach Pitino for recruiting him but in the end it just wasn't the right fit. Next came the Alabama hat which Kedren stacked on top of the Louisville hat. He thanked Coach Grant for recruiting him but again, in the end, it just wasn't the right fit. Next came the Vanderbilt hat, which he sat on top of the Alabama hat. He talked about how they were the first ones to recruit him and how he really fit in with the players.

He grabbed the Florida hat and talked about Coach Donovan. He said that something Coach Donovan said to him a while back really stuck with him [paraphrasing]: "if all four schools were in Lewisburg, which one would you choose? That's the one." Kedren then picked up the Vanderbilt hat and committed to Coach Stallings and the Commodores. I'm hoping video surfaces on youtube soon.

Thanks, Coach Donovan.

Vanderbilt Commodores land top basketball prospect in Kedren Johnson | tennessean.com | The Tennessean

He averaged 22.4 points, eight rebounds and five assists last season, leading the Tigers (27-6) to the Class AA semifinals, and he was named The Tennessean player of the year.

Scout.com: INTERVIEW: Darshawn McClellan

Scout.com: Vandy Gets Its Point

Area standout Johnson commits to Vanderbilt | Columbia Daily Herald

Johnson won’t be able to officially sign with Vanderbilt until Nov. 10. When he does sign, Johnson will be the first Marshall County basketball player to play for Vanderbilt since Spence Young in the early 1970s.

Vanderbilt Sports Line: Vandy Basketball Lands #1 Recruiting Target: Welcome Kedren Johnson

Facing hazy future at Tennessee, Bruce Pearl hopes for the best - Luke Winn - SI.com

"I should be made an example of, and I am -- I'm embarrassed. But I hope that the things we did don't rise to the level of termination, because we run a clean program. We got investigated in a lot of areas."

Documents show Tennessee self-reported numerous violations - ESPN

The university has received a letter of inquiry from the NCAA but has not yet received a notice of allegation. That could take time, as the NCAA may lump basketball, football and baseball violations into one report.

Still hilarious after nine months:


Have I mentioned how much I'm looking forward to the VU-UT games this season? YES (scroll down).

Baseball

Eric Jones' thoughts on first baseball practice | Vanderbilt Official Athletic Site

Quick Slants: Excelling Under Pressure | Vanderbilt Official Athletic Site

Baseball Coach Tim Corbin and Tampa Bay pitching star David Price are prominently mentioned in a new book, Clutch: Why Some People Excel Under Pressure and Others Don’t by Paul Sullivan.

Other

Capital One National Mascot of the Year

Mr. C is up to 8th in the overall standings.

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