Vanderbilt has been searching for a solution at quarterback throughout 2014. They're betting that a true freshman will be the answer against UMass.
The Commodores will turn to Wade Freebeck to start Saturday's game against the MInutemen. Freebeck, a 6'5", 212 pound pocket passer, is just three months removed from being a high school senior. He got the nod over Stephen Rivers, Johnny McCrary, and a possibly-injured Patton Robinette. He's slated to become the fourth quarterback this team has deployed in three games.
Freebeck would become the first true freshman to start at QB for the Commodores since 1998 (David Wallace, Alabama 9/12/98)— VandyFootball (@VandyFootball) September 13, 2014
Freebeck doesn't have a tough act to follow. Rivers started last week's 41-3 loss versus Ole Miss and completed just six of his 25 passes. He also got into a shouting match with coach Derek Mason after calling a timeout the Commodores didn't have late in the fourth quarter. Robinette and McCrary have been similarly ineffective this fall. Turning to the true freshman may seem like an unusual move, but Mason's team has been outscored 78-10 this year and has yet to score an offensive touchdown. It's clear this coaching staff is looking for a catalyst on offense.
Additionally, junior tailback Jerron Seymour has been warming up with the team and appears primed to make his season debut. He missed the first two games of the year thanks to a nagging knee injury that limited him in summer practices.