Quick Hits: Georgia

By Zac Ellis

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Vanderbilt will face its fourth consecutive ranked opponent when No. 5 Georgia ventures to West End on Saturday (11 a.m. CT ESPN).

Commodores head coach Derek Mason spent Tuesday previewing the matchup with the Bulldogs. He was joined by senior receiver Trent Sherfield and senior safety Ryan White.

Here's what the Dores had to say:

  Mason said he is impressed with Georgia's 5-0 start, which included a 41-0 win at Tennessee last week. "I like the way they're playing. Kirby [Smart has] done a good job, along with [defensive coordinator] Mel Tucker, of getting that group to play at a high level."

  Following two straight losses, Mason said it's important Vanderbilt show up against Georgia. "We need to respond. We need to play well."

  Mason said making excuses about Vanderbilt's tough stretch "sort of defeats what you're working to be. It's just a team right now that's still fighting through trying to find its way through a tough stretch of games. But that breeds character."

  Mason said Vanderbilt's "strain to finish" has not been enough in recent weeks. "Until I visibly see it, I'm going to keep asking for it. At some point in time, I'll get it."

  Georgia coach Kirby Smart declined to name a starting quarterback this week between Jacob Eason and Jake Fromm. But Mason said he isn't fooled. "I believe Fromm is the guy."

  Mason said Vanderbilt must find a way to spark its downhill run game. That starts with the offensive line, he said. "We've got to get more functional up front. We got to move men against their will. That's the toughest thing about playing in the SEC, you're playing against big guys who don't move very easily."

  Sherfield said Vanderbilt won't back down from another ranked opponent. "It's definitely been a challenge, but we embrace and accept those challenges. It makes us a better football team."

  Vanderbilt failed to stop the run in losses to Alabama and Florida, and White said the Commodores can't miss that opportunity against Georgia's ground game. "That's something we've really got to capitalize on."

Zac Ellis is the Writer and Digital Media Editor for Vanderbilt Athletics.



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