NASHVILLE, Tenn. – After a high-energy practice Sunday that capped off a busy opening weekend of preseason camp, head coach Derek Mason left the team’s on-campus practice facility feeling upbeat about his Commodores.
“The energy so far has been right where we want it,” Mason said. “I’m excited about how our guys are comprehending what’s been put in front of them, competing and executing.”
Mason made the most of NCAA-mandated acclimation practices over the weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, he put the Commodores through quick-paced, split-squad practices that stressed position fundamentals, scheme development and conditioning. With fewer players at each session, virtually the entire roster enjoyed extra repetitions.
“This team understands the tempo we want and did a great job of making the most of these last two days,” Mason said. “We got a lot out of the split practices. I’m seeing more overall depth on our roster.”
The Commodores will practice late Monday in limited gear, then come back Tuesday evening for their first practice in full gear.
Sunday practice highlights
Here’s a look at some highlights from 7-on-7, short yardage and team drills Sunday:
- Quarterbacks Riley Neal and Deuce Wallace started quickly, hitting receivers Kalija Lipscomb and Chris Pierce for touchdowns on back-to-back plays.
- Pressure off the edge by outside linebacker Kenny Hebert forced an incompletion.
- On consecutive plays, cornerback Cam Watkins stopped potential touchdown by deflecting passes in the end zone.
- Tight end Jared Pinkney ended the red-zone segment with a one-handed grab near the back of the end zone.
- Outside linebacker Lashawn Paulino-Bell opened a 9-on-9 period by stuffing a ball carrier behind the line of scrimmage.
- Tight end Ben Bresnahan went high in heavy traffic to come down with a touchdown pass.
- Cornerback Tre Douglas made two impressive plays in passing drills, knocking down a pass in the end zone, then returning an interception down the sideline for a touchdown.
- Wideout Jackson Winrow made one of the top catches of the session, reaching well behind his intended route to haul in a touchdown throw.
- A well-timed strip by cornerback Jaylen Mahoney stopped another apparent touchdown.
Effort. Focus. Discipline.
— Vanderbilt Football (@VandyFootball) August 3, 2019
Dore Jam this Saturday
Vanderbilt’s annual Dore Jam is set for this Saturday, as fans will have the opportunity to meet their favorite Commodore student-athletes, get autographs, listen to live music and participate in an array of family-oriented activities.
Dore Jam will be held from 3-5 p.m. in the Vanderbilt Multipurpose Facility, located between 25th Avenue South and Natchez Trace.
Mason and the football team will be on hand to greet fans and sign free 2019 schedule posters that will be distributed at the facility entrance (located off Children’s Way).
New to the 2019 edition of Dore Jam, the first 2,000 fans will be able to create their own t-shirt from Hip Hues. Official mascot Mr. C, Commodore spirit leaders, face painters and balloon artists will be on hand to entertain young fans. Other activities for young fans include inflatables, obstacle courses, soccer skee balls and a kicking station.