1) Slow down Brandon Doughty
Pass - Vanderbilt absolutely did succeed in slowing to Brandon Doughty. Doughty was harrassed for almost three complete quarters until a busted play resulted in a long completion deep into Vandy territory. Doughty was sacked twice by the Vandy defense and the Commodore DBs, for the most part, stayed glued to the WKU receivers allowing them little success until late in the game.
2) Offensive improvement
Fail - The stats looked good, 20 first downs, almost 400 yards of total offense but the end result was sub-par: 12 points. Points scored, by the way are the true measuring stick of a good offense. You can get first downs all, make spectacular catches and super runs all day but if you can't get the ball in the end zone or at least make field goals, you will lose. The offense looked improved but 12 points isn't enough to beat most teams in 2015.
3) Big plays on defense
Push - Yes, Vandy held WKU to less than half its average yardage of 2014. There were some big plays, broken up pass and sacks, which are needed. But where were the fumble recoveries and interceptions? Don't get me wrong, the defense played splendidly for most of the game but it's crucial to create some turnovers. Who will argue that turnovers aren't the most game changing type of plays a defense can make?
Next up for the Commodores is a home SEC opener against Georgia which beat Louisiana-Monroe 51-14 on Saturday. Check back later in the week for our three keys to a win over the Bulldogs.
Three Keys Reviewed: Vanderbilt vs. WKU
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