Five New Year's Resolutions for Vanderbilt

It is that time of year where people and institutions vow to turn over a new leaf and start afresh. We will look at resolutions for the athletic department as a whole later this week, but with an epic football season just in the books it is worth looking at the pigskin first. Here are five goals that the team, and individuals, should aim for in 2013.

1) Win ten games

With nine victories this year the Commodores tied the 1915 and 1904 teams for the most wins in a season.

How about breaking it next year?

Vandy will start the season with the longest win streak in the SEC and an opening night tilt against Ole Miss will give a clue as to what the 2013 team is made of. With winnable out of conference games, including Wake Forest for seemingly the thirty fifth consecutive year, the 'Dores would only have to find an upset or two to make ten wins a reality. Ten wins is something that should be aimed for from day one of spring practice.

2) Beat an SEC power who is having a good year

For everything James Franklin has done at Vanderbilt there is still a gap in his resume, he has yet to beat an SEC powerhouse team who is having a winning season. Sure, there have been near misses like the South Carolina game this year and the Florida matchup a season ago, but the victory remains elusive. With games against traditional Eastern division foes in addition to facing Texas A&M from the West there will be plenty of chances in 2013 for this to change.

3) Develop Jordan Matthews into a top 15 NFL draft pick

The greatest news the 'Dores will get this offseason happened almost immediately after the Music City Bowl win when it was announced that Jordan Matthews will be returning to school for his senior season. This news is big for two reasons. Firstly it shows that Franklin has developed a culture where the best players want to be around the program with no interest in jumping to the NFL early. Secondly Matthews just happens to be a beast of a receiver who will be the best player on the field in most of Vanderbilt's games next year.

In addition, imagine the recruiting benefits which will come with Franklin being able to sell the fact that Vanderbilt is now putting elite players into the NFL draft.

4) Maintain a top 25 recruiting class

The 2013 class is ranked inside the top 20 by all the major recruiting sites as of writing. As coaches all over the country know, however, nothing is sealed until the kids are on campus and enrolled in classes. Franklin has proved to be a master of the signing period and if he can keep all current recruits, let alone add a couple of late commits, then Vandy will be set to welcome the greatest class in the history of the program to Nashville.

5) Keep James Franklin

Another season like this will have the vultures circling with their riches. Don't let him leave.

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