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A Clockwork Vandy: Mississippi

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I'm only two games in and am already regretting this pitch during the AoG board meeting.

I envy these guys.  They only had to watch it once.
I envy these guys. They only had to watch it once.
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

It is a small blessing that I passed out soon after finishing the first installment of this series.  I probably would have died trying to do this game after Temple, already being blitzed, and it was late already.  Of course, it was a Pyrrhic victory to say the least, because (a) I only delayed the inevitable, and (b) I pretty much have to watch this game sober on a Monday night. Huzzah cruel and unusual punishments.

I should remind readers that almost all this season was completely blocked from my mind, so it's almost like I'm watching these games for the first time.

1st Quarter

Mississippi ball, 3rd and 4, Vandy 36, ~11:30, No Score

Mississippi is just doing what it wants right now.  It's pretty much when you play video game football and you can just pick whatever play you want because the CPU can't stop you.  4+ yards a clip.  On our first real 3rd down, and a chance to stop with a FG, we don't stop crap.  To cover what went wrong on this drive would take hours.

...and 3 plays later Walton runs 20 yards for a TD.  Right over and through the box and through the secondary.  I have no words.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and 3, Vandy 45, ~8:30, Miss 7 - VU 0

This whole drive is once again proof that our offense should have been Ralph Webb with a few play actions and such.  Webb starts us off with three great runs: 10, 10, 7 yards.  Then Stephen Rivers was given the call for two passes and... just terrible.  Trusting Stephen Rivers to throw anything but the game is stupid.

Mississippi ball, 2nd and 3, Mississippi 27, ~7:55, Miss 7 - VU 0

Bo Wallace and Cody Core are just having fun.  They're just taking 20 yards at a clip.  It'd be infuriating if it weren't so damned sad.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and 4, Vandy 29, ~1:40, MIss 10 - VU 0

You know, we should be running a smashmouth offense like this.  It's a shame that Stephen Rivers is literally incapable of being even a mild threat for Mississippi to worry about.  Mark Sanchez could literally take lessons from him about how to overthrow your receiver.

END 1st

Nigel Bowden ripped the facemask off Jaylen Walton's helmet.  That's about how he should feel right now.  This is embarassing.

2nd Quarter

Mississippi Ball, 2nd and 5, Mississippi 45, ~14:20, Miss 10 - VU 0

Just to add to the list of things we have no answer for - Evan Engram.  20 yards at a clip, this isn't a contest by any stretch of the imagination.

Mississippi Ball, 1st and GOAL, Vandy 5, ~11:00, Miss 10 - VU 0

You know, we're a pretty decent defense once we get down inside the red zone.  Our guys can cover long enough and we can get into the backfield.  Kyle Woestmann hits Walton for a loss of 6.  Completely blows by the blocks too.  You know what this says to me?  We don't have the talent to cover any kind of spread offense.  Down in the red zone, that doesn't matter because there's not nearly as much space.  Hopefully our secondary is better this year.

Vanderbilt ball, 3rd and 9, Mississippi 20, ~8:20, Miss 13 - VU 0

Rivers manages to get a pass off to prevent a 3 and out, but because it's the RIvers special 5 yards off target throw, it's not 6 like it could be.

Mississippi ball, 1st and 10, Vandy 20, ~5 min, Miss 20 - VU 0

Bo Wallace is a great QB and it's really just night and day watching him vs Rivers.  Commentator even rightfully pointed out Bo steps UP into the pocket while Rivers runs like a frightened rabbit.  Ok, I editorialized a bit on that last part.  But he should have said that.  Rivers plays scared.

Vanderbilt ball, 3rd and 9, Vandy 32, ~3:00, Miss 20 - VU 0

You know, I never noticed it last year, but Stephen Rivers often does this awful little hop when he throws the ball.  No wonder his "passes" have no accuracy, oomph, or anything that can really be considered a pass really.  Stephen Scheu is awesome though and brings down a ball off his fingertips.

HALFTIME

We simply do not have the DBs to compete in this game at all.  They're just getting outmatched in position and speed across the board.  Offensively, we're making terrible play calls and Mason is scared to do what he should - pull Rivers, because of all the criticism from the Temple debacle.

Mason at the halftime interview says we need to give it to our "weapons", namely our WRs.  You know who's not a weapon? Stephen Rivers.

Mississippi 20 - Vandy 0

3rd Quarter

Vanderbilt ball, 2nd and 4, Vandy 31, ~14:20, Miss 27 - VU 0

I really dislike Stephen Rivers playing QB.  A lot.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and 4, Vandy 41, ~12:50, Miss 27 - VU 0

We needed a score on our opening drive of the half.  Instead we give a pick-6 and follow it with a 3 and out.  Splendid, a plan fiendishly cleverly in its cent-ric-it-see.

Mississippi ball, 3rd and 16, Mississippi 15, ~11:30, Miss 27 - VU 0

What a combination of down/distance and field position for us.  Set up chiefly by a Vince Taylor monster sack where he just barreled through the line.  All we have to do is make a stop and we get a greatly shortened field to maybe make this respecta... OH FOR...

Of course we just let up a 20 yard play.  Of course.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and 8, Vandy 27, ~9:00, Miss 34 - VU 0

Another 3 and out.  Rivers is bad.  I don't want to put it ALL on him though because there's like zero drags/shallows that we're running... not that it matters because I'm sure he'd throw it off target.

Mississippi ball

Ryan Buchanan is in.  He's Mississippi's fourth string QB.  Fourth.

Mississippi ball, 4th and 1, Vandy 2, ~3:00, Miss 41 - VU 0

...and it doesn't matter. Why must I watch this sober?  Have you ever watched Manos: The Hands of Fate without MST3K commentary?  That's what this is like.

Vanderbilt ball, 2nd and 3, Vandy 24, ~2:00, Miss 41 - VU 0

Ralph Webb trusted with a ball, gets us 28 yards after being the one to make it 2nd and 3 with a 7 yard run before.  Wasn't even contested.  He's a beast.  By the way, this was the first time we crossed the 50 on offense.   Reminds me of a certain National Championship I watched a few years ago with a bunch of Bammers.... only there was the hope of victory.

Vanderbilt ball, 2nd and 10, Mississippi 34, ~2 seconds, Miss 41 - VU 0

This play is saved as "What_the_hell_is_this.mp4" on my computer

End 3rd:

WebbVVU

VUOffense.jpg

4th Quarter

I really wish I had given up on this game and didn't have to watch another quarter of this...

Mississippi ball, 1st and 10, Mississippi 2, ~11:10, Miss 41 - VU 0

Hey I forgot about this play.  Cunningham with a great tackle off the 6 yard run, and the ball comes loose, big Vince Taylor is playing back and picks it up.  Rumbles forward a bit but not enough for the TD.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and goal, Mississippi 9, ~11 min, Miss 41 - VU 3

Has anyone bothered to check whether Stephen Rivers wasn't just a giant chicken in a disguise, and not really a QB at all?  He just called a 4th timeout.

Mississippi 41 - Vandy 3.

Mississippi ball, 1st and 10, Vandy 49, ~ 6:50, Miss 41 - VU 3

If anyone is actually still reading at this point, congrats.  I stopped caring about what I was writing a long while ago.

Vanderbilt ball, 4th and 10, Vandy 30, ~3:30, Miss 41 - VU 3

Rivers, you may be wearing a clever disguise, but I know the truth - you're actually a giant chicken.

FINAL

Skill positions make all the difference.  We didn't start Stephen Rivers again, right?  I'm not imagining that?  We didn't right?  Time to check the Vanderbilt Het-o-Meter