The other key to slowing the Gators offense is containing Percy Harvin. The Commodores were not able to accomplish this on Saturday. Harvin ran the ball 11 times for 113 yards and caught 9 passes for 110 yards. Unfortunately for the Commodores, Harvin was not the only weapon used by Tebow in this game. Andre Caldwell had 9 catches of his own for 103 yards and 2 touchdowns.
The key for Vanderbilt to have success on offense was to control the clock and keep the high-powered Gator offense off the field. Vanderbilt actually had the edge in time of possession in this game, but it was only because the Florida offense scored so quickly. The best way to keep the opposing offense off the field is with a successful running game. The Commodores were never able to get their running game going on Saturday. The Vanderbilt rushing attack only totaled 106 yards on 33 carries.
The Vanderbilt passing attack struggled as well. Mackenzie Adams was just 16 of 32 for 159 yards, 0 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Earl Bennett had just 5 catches for 31 yards. Bennett needed to have a big game, as he had in the last two meetings with Florida, for the Commodores to have any success on Saturday. The toughest thing for the Vanderbilt offense was they had to become one dimensional so early in the game. They faced a 28-point deficit at halftime. This allowed the Gators to not respect the run at all and just play the pass.
One game does not a season make. That is the biggest thing that the Commodores should take away from this game. They just have to put this one behind them and focus on the task at hand, which is beating the Kentucky Wildcats this Saturday at Vanderbilt Stadium. A win against the Wildcats will make this loss a distant memory.