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Vanderbilt gets the dumbest penalty imaginable

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Vanderbilt had two players wearing the same jersey number on the same play, because of course we did.

Tennessee v Vanderbilt Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

After Vanderbilt gave up an Ole Miss touchdown on the first drive of today’s game, Vanderbilt had Michael Owusu and Jayden Harrison on the return team on the ensuing kickoff.

Michael Owusu and Jayden Harrison both wear number 88. It is against the rules to have two players who wear the same number on the field simultaneously.

Dig a little deeper, though, and this is even dumber than it looks. Vanderbilt has 18 sets of duplicate numbers, and while that includes literally every single number from 4 through 17 (because of course it does), it also includes the numbers 52 and 95.

Meanwhile, Vanderbilt has 13 numbers from 0 through 99 — all the available numbers — that are currently unused. What are we doing here?

Seriously, though, this is a penalty that might be the most fireable offense I’ve ever seen committed by a coaching staff. The next time somebody tells you that the extent of the problem with Vanderbilt football is the amount of investment by the administration, just point to this.