Vanderbilt-Western Carolina postgame notes
Sept. 5, 2009
Vanderbilt Game Notes
September 5, 2009
Opponent: Western Carolina
First Time Starters
Nine Commodores earned their first collegiate starts against Western Carolina. The first-time starters were cornerback Casey Hayward, defensive end Tim Fugger, safety Sean Richardson, linebacker Brent Trice, tailback Zac Stacy, wide receiver John Cole, offensive tackle James Williams, receiver Udom Umoh and placekicker Ryan Fowler.
• The Commodores captured their season opener for the third consecutive year, and fourth in five years. Vanderbilt is now 77-39-4 all-time in openers.
• The 45-point win was Vanderbilt’s largest winning margin since the Commodores defeated Chattanooga 51-6 on Sept. 6, 2003.
• It marked the first Commodore shutout since Vanderbilt topped The Citadel 58-0 on Oct. 9, 1999.
• The Commodore offense posted 620 total yards, the most since Vanderbilt gained 621 total yards at Kentucky on Nov. 11, 2006.
• The Vanderbilt rushing attack amassed 433 rushing yards, the most since at least through the 1981 season (records on hand). It was the first time the Commodores went over the 400-yard rushing mark since going for 415 vs. Georgia on Oct. 15, 1994.
• The Commodore defense also limited Western Carolina to four first downs and 115 total yards. WCU also had just 41 rushing yards, the fewest by a Vanderbilt opponent since Duke registered 28 yards on Oct. 25, 2008.
• The VU defense did not allow a first down on 13 third down attempts and one first down attempt.
• Since the 2005 opener, Vanderbilt is now 14-4 in the month of September.
• Vanderbilt is now 25-3 all-time versus current opponents from the Southern Conference and has won the last eight matchups dating back to the 1979 season.
It was the first time two Vanderbilt running backs rushed for more than 100 yards in the same game since Kwane Doster and Norval McKenzie each gained 101 yards against Ole Miss on Sept. 21, 2002. Stacy’s rushing total was the most by a Vanderbilt true freshman.
• In the first four minutes of action, sophomore linebacker Chris Marve posted two forced fumbles and a quarterback sack. He had a team-high four forced fumbles last year. He finished with four tackles.
• Sophomore defensive tackle T.J. Greenstone had a career-high five tackles, including a quarterback sack.
• Senior defensive back Myron Lewis tied a career-high with three pass breakups.
• True freshman defensive back Eric Samuels finished with a fumble recovery and a 19-yard interception return.
• With 7:19 left in the first quarter, quarterback Larry Smith connected with junior Justin Green for a 49-yard touchdown reception. It was Green’s first career touchdown reception, and his longest career catch.
• With 4:04 in the initial quarter, tailback Warren Norman capped a quick Commodore scoring drive with a 7-yard touchdown rush. He also had a pair of 16-yard rushes in the drive.
• Vanderbilt’s 14-0 margin after one quarter matches the team’s largest lead since the Commodores owned a 17-0 advantage over South Carolina on Oct. 20, 2007.
• On the first play of the second quarter, Stacy’s 9-yard touchdown carry after lining up at quarterback pushed the lead to 21-0.
• The last time Vanderbilt held an opponent scoreless at halftime was against Eastern Michigan (13-0) on Sept. 29, 2007.
• The 21 point advantage tied the Commodores largest halftime lead since a 28-7 margin against Duke on Oct. 28, 2006. The most recent halftime lead larger than that was when Vanderbilt held a 41-6 advantage against Chattanooga on Sept. 6, 2003.