Vanderbilt returns home this Saturday to face Ole Miss at Vanderbilt Stadium. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m. on SEC Network.
NASHVILLE – Vanderbilt returns home this Saturday to face Ole Miss at Vanderbilt Stadium. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m. on SEC Network.
On Tuesday, Commodores head coach Derek Mason met the media to preview his team’s matchup with the Rebels. Mason was joined by wide receiver Kalija Lipscomb and linebacker Josh Smith.
Here’s what the Dores had to say:
• Mason said Vanderbilt played well enough for most of its game vs. Missouri, but “about eight minutes of that football game we’d like to have back.”
• Mason praised Ole Miss quarterback Jordan Ta’amu as a playmaker. “Jordan Ta’amu is a really good quarterback. He can beat you with his legs but has a big arm. He’s got receivers around him that can make plays.”
• Mason said consistency remains a constant issue for his team. “This group, as we’ve gotten guys back and continue to get guys back, I think the opportunity is there. We just have to make sure we function consistently.”
• Mason said a four-quarter game is necessary to beat SEC competition. “There can’t be lapses in ballgames. Mistakes are common in football, but the inconsistency part has to be cleaned up. Let’s make it disappear.”
• Mason said success against Ole Miss’ offense comes down to how his defense handles tempo. “Ole Miss is going to be just as fast [as Missouri]. Teams know now, ‘Let’s tempo it on these dudes and see if they can settle down.’ Do I believe Ole Miss is going to tempo us? Yes. I would.”
• Mason on Vanderbilt needing to win its final two games to reach a bowl game: “It’s just a win-or-go-home mentality. I’ve been in playoff mentalities, I’ve been in situations where you’ve got to win or go home. For me, it’s all the same.”
• Smith on giving up a big fourth-quarter drive vs. Missouri: “That’s just tempo. We have to be able to adjust to tempo. Missouri did a good job changing it up. We have to do a better job on defense settling down.”
• Lipscomb on what plagues the Commodores in tight games: “I think we’ve had an issue playing a complete ballgame all season. I think we’ve yet to put a whole four quarters together. That’s what we’re working towards now, cleaning up the little details.”
Zac Ellis is the Writer and Digital Media Editor for Vanderbilt Athletics.