Which Vandy will show up vs. Florida?

The Commodores return to Nashville this weekend on a high after notching only the team's fourth SEC road win since 2008. This Commodore team is a baffling bunch who clearly have the talent and attitude to play with the big dogs, but who until the Missouri game had seemingly not found the right spark to secure a big win.

The Commodores return to Nashville this weekend on a high after notching only the team's fourth SEC road win since 2008. This Commodore team is a baffling bunch who clearly have the talent and attitude to play with the big dogs, but who until the Missouri game had seemingly not found the right spark to secure a big win. Now with the No. 4 Florida Gators coming to town the question is simple; Which Vandy will show up this weekend?

It may have happened over a month and a half ago, but it is worth remembering that this Commodore team was one horrifically blown call away from beating South Carolina on opening night. That is the same Gamecock team which has risen to No. 3 in the rankings and which is a number of analysts choice to make it all the way to the National Title game based on their All-World defensive line play. That 17-13 loss was an emotional drainer for Vandy, which in some ways accounts for the resulting loss at Northwestern too, but the 'Dores proved they could play with a top tier SEC team.

The nightmare scenario, of course, is that the Vandy from the Georgia game will show up. This one is much fresher in the memory and was just the type of demoralizing loss which coach James Franklin was hired to halt. This Vandy could not get Georgia off the field, could not finish drives, and just generally looked lost on the field. If this squad shows up then the Florida game will be a blow out.

One look at the stats this year will tell you exactly what Florida will try to do this weekend. The Gators are the most run heavy team in the SEC (they average over 47 rushing attempts per game) and they will be going against a Vandy defense which has been gashed at times on the ground. Ideally the Commodores would be playing a pass first team, the secondary has been outstanding in 2012, but football is all about adapting and Vanderbilt's front seven will have to play the game of their lives to stop the Gators' rushing assault.

Offensively the Commodores have been improving all year. Zac Stacy may have been held to just 2.5 yards per carry last week, but he was lethal when it counted. The Jordan Rodgers to Jordan Matthews connection is still solid, and most importantly the play calling was vastly improved in the Mizzou game. Florida is not necessarily set up to score a ton of points (27 per game) and there is no reason to think that the Commodore offense won't be able to match them score for score.

This one is off the radar in terms of upset watch this week, but if good Vandy shows up then the Commodores have a shot at shocking the nation. On the flip side however, if bad Vandy show up it is going to be a long night in Nashville.

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