Notes from the Football SID's Desk
Oct. 3, 2013
Senior Carey Spear could conclude his Commodore career considered the finest kicker in team history. He's an All-Southeastern Conference performer, a school record holder, and the program's first three-year team captain since a quarterback named Jay Cutler guided the offense.
This Saturday, Spear could add the title of Vanderbilt Outstanding Senior to his undergraduate resume.
Spear, from Cleveland, Ohio, is one of 10 finalists for the 2013 Outstanding Senior honor. The finalists - and eventual Outstanding Senior recipient - will be recognized during halftime ceremonies of the Missouri-Vanderbilt game.
Spear is the first Commodore football player to be named as a finalist for the Outstanding Senior award. Several other Vanderbilt student-athletes, including Ellen Scott (2009, cross country), Amanda Scott (2008, cross country), Sarah Scott (2008, cross country) and Erica Grimaldi (2005, women's basketball), have been finalists for the honor began in 2005.
The award is given to a deserving senior that best represents Vanderbilt as a student leader, and has positively impacted the organizations of which they are involved, as well as the Vanderbilt community as a whole. Spear has been thoroughly involved with Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and has participated in several mission trips as an undergraduate.
Spear's final campaign has been filled with recognition. Considered an All-America candidate and Lou Groza Award contender, Spear also has been named to the Allstate/American Football Coaches Association "Good Works" Team, which recognizes community service and achievements in the classroom and on the football field.
The Outstanding Senior presentation is one of the most highlight events of homecoming activities this weekend. Other homecoming events on campus include a Block Party & Pep Rally (Friday, 7-10 p.m.) and Tailgate (gameday, 4:30-6:30 p.m.).
Krause, Matthews Forming Solid 1-2 Receiving Tandem
Krause and Matthews have combined for 59 catches, just one reception shy of LSU's Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham. Their combined receiving yardage average of 187 yards ranks third in the SEC behind only the same LSU duo and and Texas A&M's Mike Evans and Derel Walker.
While most experts are aware of Matthews' 2013 and career accomplishments, Krause is quietly putting together a career year. The senior has established a new single-season high with 349 receiving yards and needs just five catches to match his previous season high.
Offensive Consistency at Historic Levels
The Commodores are scoring points at historic levels for the program. The `Dores have tallied at least 24 points in the last 11 games, the longest consecutive streak of at least 24 points in team history.The team's 34.8-point scoring offense ranks would top any Vanderbilt squad from the last 90 years.
In addition, the unit enjoyed a rare feat of offensive fireworks in their win over UAB - producing for the first time ever a 300-yard passer in Austyn Carta-Samuels, 100-yard rusher in Jerron Seymour and two 100-yard receivers in Krause and Matthews.
Sixteen Commodores Have Started Every Game
Fourteen position players and both kicking specialists have started in all five games this season.
On defense, ends Walker May and Kyle Woestmann, tackle Vince Taylor, linebacker Darreon Herring and the entire secondary - cornerbacks Andre Hal and Steven Clarke, strong safety Javon Marshall and free safety Kenny Ladler - have started every game.
Odd Stat from Only Vanderbilt-Mizzou Game in Nashville
The only previous game played between Vanderbilt and Missouri in Nashville did not feature a single completed forward pass.
The two teams played in a driving rainstorm in the 1957 season opener on Sept. 27. The rain turned Vanderbilt's Dudley Field to a virtually quagmire, limiting two teams to single-dimension running attacks. Two of the four passes attempted by Vanderbilt were intercepted by the Tigers.
When the game ended, the Commodores and Tigers played to a 7-7 tie. It also marked one of seven Commodore ties during a 28-game stretch from 1957-59.
Other Commodore Tidbits
Vanderbilt is now 10-2 in its last 12 games, marking the team's best 12-game stretch in six decades... First-year starting punter Taylor Hudson leads the SEC - and ranks 7th in the NCAA - with a 43.0-yard net punting average... The team's two leading running backs, Wesley Tate and Jerron Seymour, are combining to average 106.0 rushing yards per game... Eight different Commodore defenders have multiple tackles for loss. DE Caleb Azubike and DT Adam Butler pace the defense with 4.0 tackles for loss each... Carey Spear is the only Vanderbilt kicker to nail at least four field goals of 50 yards or more... The team's leading tacklers are a pair of senior starters at safety, Kenny Ladler (35) and Javon Marshall (33).
Tickets Remain Available
Reserve tickets ($55 ea.) remain available for the Missouri game, as well as upcoming games against Georgia (Oct. 19), Kentucky (Nov. 16) and Wake Forest (Nov. 30).