Report Card: Vanderbilt vs. Florida

The game is over now: Florida 27, Vanderbilt 3. VandyMania.com's armchair quarterback analyzes every element of the Commodore's performance and assigns a grade to each area.


Vanderbilt
3

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Florida
27

AREA
GRADE
COMMENTS
PASSING OFFENSE
C
Mackenzi Adams completed 13-of-29 passes for 100 yards and an interception. The offensive line did a decent job of protecting him as he was not sacked all night. Still it was a lackluster passing performance but we must take into consideration who the opponent was and where VU was playing. They were playing the nation's No. 1 team which is also No. 1 nationally in pass efficiency defense in the Swamp. Also, remember Adams hadn't gotten many practice reps with the first team until the past week. He'll do better against Kentucky.
RUSHING OFFENSE
C
99 yards rushing sounds bad but realize that Florida allows an average of 98 yards rushing a game. Norman had a nice 30 yard run in the third quarter that led to Vandy's first and only score.
PASSING DEFENSE
B-
Vanderbilt allowed Florida 227 yards passing which is about 30 yards more than their game average. Part of the reason that number was higher was because the Commodores were so successful stopping the Florida running game. Vandy's defenders sacked Tebow four times on the night which is fantastic.
RUSHING DEFENSE
A
Vandy held Tim Tebow to his lowest rushing yardage (27 yards) this season, with the exception of the Charleston Southern game (1 yard) and in that game Tebow only had two rushes as opposed 16 rushes versus the Commodores. The Gators as a team average 241 yards a game rushing and against Vandy had just 148. Excellent work here.
SPECIAL TEAMS
B
It looked really good until Brett Upson inadvertently took a knee while fielding a low snap which set the Gators up for an easy score. Upson did well punting, finishing with a 42.4 average. Ryan Fowler made a 32-yard field goal to keep Vanderbilt from being shut out. Warren Norman had 5 kickoff returns for 99 yards. Norman broke the SEC season return yardage record as a freshman. Incredible. Alex Washington also performed well returning punts. The fact that he returned two against the Gators is big because no previous Florida opponent has managed to return even one for any yardage.
COACHING
C
Pretty solid coming off a messy loss to Georgia Tech. Turnovers were suddenly way down in a hostile environment with a quarterback who hasn't played much this season. Good job fixing the rushing defense. The choice to punt with 5 minutes remaining in the game, down by 17 was questionable. Other teams have pulled out games in similar situations. We'll never know if Vandy could have pulled it out or not because they didn't make an attempt.
OVERALL GRADE
C+
No one likes to say "moral victory" but it was a moral victory of sorts. With a local journalist saying Florida could "name the score" it was refreshing to see the 'Dores go down to the swamp and knock Tebow down several times while giving the Gators a minor scare on their home field.

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