Oct. 31, 2017
– Vanderbilt returns home for the first time in nearly a month to host Western Kentucky.
– The Commodores face their final non-conference opponent on Saturday. The Dores are 3-0 outside of the Southeastern Conference this season.
– Vanderbilt’s 19 touchdown passes this season are the most by a VU team since 2005 when the team threw 21 TD passes.
– RB Ralph Webb needs 55 yards to pass LSU’s Leonard Fournette, Auburn’s Carnell Williams and Kentucky’s Sonny Collins to move into 11th all-time in SEC rushing.
– QB Kyle Shurmur needs one touchdown pass to equal Eric Jonesfor fifth all-time at Vanderbilt and four to match Kurt Page for fourth all-time at VU.
– WR Kalija Lipscomb‘s six TD catches rank third in the SEC.
ONE MORE NON-CON
Vanderbilt steps outside conference play for the final time this season on Saturday, welcoming Western Kentucky to Nashville.
The Commodores opened up the season against another Conference USA foe, winning at Middle Tennessee 28-6. The Dores followed up with a 42-0 victory over Alabama A&M at Vanderbilt Stadium then moved to 3-0 for the first time since 2011 with a 14-7 win over then No. 18 Kansas State.
Vanderbilt is 29-5 all-time against C-USA teams, playing Middle Tennessee and Western Kentucky in the same season for the second straight year. VU has also played Old Dominion (1-0), Louisiana Tech (1-0), Marshall (2-0), North Texas (2-0) and Rice (4-1).
WRs CATCHING ON
Vanderbilt’s receiving corps has stepped up this season for the Commodores with four of the top five pass catchers on the team listed as wide receivers.
Senior C.J. Duncan leads the team with 33 receptions on the year and is coming off a career-best eight catches at South Carolina with two touchdown catches, also a career-high. Duncan’s eight-catch outing marked his seventh game this season with at least three catches.
Sophomore Kalija Lipscomb has emerged as the team’s deep threat this season and posted his best game at Vanderbilt last week with career-highs in receptions (7) and yards (128). His 128 yards receiving are the most by a Commodore this season and marked the first 100-yard game of his career. Lipscomb’s six TD catches this season lead the Dores and rank third in the SEC.
Senior Trent Sherfield leads the squad with 458 yards, which ranks ninth in the league. He hauled in four catches for 59 yards last week against the Gamecocks.
Senior Caleb Scott ranks fifth on the team with 13 receptions, including four for 32 yards last week.
Vandy quarterbacks have spread the ball around this season with 13 different Dores catching passes. At least five different players have caught passes in seven of the team’s eight games.
Vanderbilt’s offense has featured an improved passing game this season led by QB Kyle Shurmur.
The Commodores enter the weekend averaging 220.5 yards passing per game to rank fourth in the SEC. VU has not averaged that many passing yards in a season since 2013 (227.5 ypg) and has only averaged more than 200 yards passing per game in a season twice over the last two seasons.
Vanderbilt’s passing offense has also led the squad to the end zone with 19 touchdown passes in the first eight games of the season. No Vandy team has thrown for more scores since Jay Cutler tossed 21 TDs as a senior in 2005.
Kyle Shurmur‘s 18 touchdown passes rank second in the league and 17th nationally.
WEBB vs. C-USA
Ralph Webb has enjoyed playing teams from Conference USA in his career.
Vanderbilt’s all-time leading rusher has three 100-yard games, including a career-best 211 yards against Middle Tennessee in 2016, in six career games against Conference USA schools. The senior ran for 95 yards and three scores in a win at Western Kentucky last season. Webb’s last-minute leap scored the game-tying touchdown before the Dores beat the Hilltoppers in overtime.behind the line of scrimmage
The Commodores’ defense has recorded multiple tackles for loss in every game this season.
The Dores opened the season with back-to-back 10-TFL performances and have at least two tackles for loss in every game.
VU has recorded at least one sack in all eight games this season to total 17 on the year.