Aug. 7, 2010
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On campus in Nashville - Three quarterbacks competing for the Vanderbilt starting job showed offensive coaches glimpses of their potential Saturday afternoon in the Commodores' second preseason practice.
Returning starter Larry Smith, fifth-year senior Jared Funk and junior transfer Jordan Rodgers each impressed during portions of 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills staged during a 2-hour, 15-minute workout at the John Rich Practice Facility.
Smith, Funk and Rodgers consistently connected with a variety of receivers, including sophomores John Cole and Brady Brown, juniors Brandon Barden and Udom Umoh, and freshmen Chris Boyd and Jordan Matthews, as the offense showed plenty of spark.
The effort came in a non-contact practice, and served as a preview to the Commodores' first open preseason workout in several years. Head Coach Robbie Caldwell has invited Vanderbilt followers to attend the Sunday (4:15 p.m.) and Monday (6 p.m.) sessions before the squad moves into full gear on Tuesday.
"The enthusiasm level was outstanding again today. Our guys are giving the coaches plenty of effort," Caldwell said. "I hope to see a lot of our fans tomorrow and Monday, and I hope they see what I'm seeing - a team that's having fun and getting after it."
Commodore fans planning to attend either of the two practices should park in the surface lot across from the Rich Practice Facility and Vanderbilt track complex. Access into the practice grounds will come off the Natchez Trace gate.
Switching Jersey Numbers
Wonder why four of Vanderbilt's top returnees - tailbacks Warren Norman and Zac Stacy, safety Sean Richardson and receiver Udom Umoh - decided to change jersey numbers?
Norman, formerly No. 27, switched to No. 5, the jersey he wore through high school in Georgia. Stacy's decision to switch from No. 21 to No. 2 was forced by his teammate Richardson.
"I wore both those numbers (2 and 21) before, but Sean (formerly No. 38) really wanted 21 so I let him have it. Just trying to help a teammate," Stacy said.
Cornerback Javon Marshall, and linebackers Nate Campbell and DeAndre Jones sat outportions of the practice with unspecified leg injuries that occurred early in the practice.