Vanderbilt-South Carolina Postgame Notes

Sept. 2, 2016

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Vanderbilt – South Carolina Postgame Notes
Sept. 1, 2016
Vanderbilt Stadium

Pregame Notes
– Vanderbilt is in its 127th year of organized football.
– The Commodores wore all white in the season opener, donning white helmets, uniforms and pants.
– South Carolina won the toss and elected to receive.
– Attendance was 30,304 for the home opener.
– Vanderbilt captains for the game were Trent Sherfield, Tommy Openshaw, and Oren Burks.

Team Notes
– Vanderbilt opened the season at home for the eighth straight season dating back to 2009.
– The Thursday night season-opener was the fifth straight for VU.
– The Commodores’ first game of the season also served as the team’s SEC-opener for the first time since 2013.
– Tommy Openshaw’s 36-yard field goal in the first quarter was the first field goal by Vanderbilt since Oct. 24, 2015, against Missouri.
– In the first quarter, Vanderbilt won the time of possession battle 11:11-3:49. The Commodores ran 18 plays to the Gamecocks nine.
– This is the second-consecutive opener in which the Commodores have shut out their opponent in the first half.

Individual Notes
LaDarius Wiley, Jared Pinkney, and Kalija Lipscomb earned their first career starts.
Bailey McElwain, Kalija Lipscomb, Reid Nelson, Khari Blasingame, Joejuan Williams, Donaven Tennyson, and Sam Loy saw their first action as Vanderbilt Commodores against South Carolina.
Kalija Lipscomb was the first starting true freshman WR since Jordan Cunningham (at Florida, 11/9/2013). Other recent true freshman WR starters include Jonathan Krause (2010), Jordan Matthews (2010) and Earl Bennett (2005).
– C.J. Duncan’s 16-yard reception in the first quarter was his first since November 22, 2014, against Mississippi State.
Khari Blasingame ran in for a one-yard touchdown in the 2nd quarter, the first of his career and the first touchdown on the season for the Commodores.
Ralph Webb tallied his team-high 25th consecutive start for the Commodores.
Charles Wright picked up his first career fumble recovery in the second quarter.
Kalija Lipscomb hauled in his first career catch on a 15-yard pass from Kyle Shurmur at the end of the 3rd quarter for a first down.
Zach Cunningham tallied 12 tackles against the Gamecocks. It is his fifth straight double-digit tackle game and 10th of his career.
– Cunningham totaled three tackles for loss, his eighth game with two or more.
Oren Burks tallied six tackles on the night, his 13th game with five or more.
– Burks forced his second career fumble in the second quarter when he stripped the ball from QB Brandon McIlwain.
LaDarius Wiley set a career-high in tackles with four, his previous high was three on Nov. 7, 2015, against Florida.
Offensive Notes
Ralph Webb carried 12 times for 45 yards in the first half. He finished with 97 yards on 20 attempts.
– The Commodores finished with 169 rushing yards, their 14th consecutive game rushing for at least 100 yards.
– Vanderbilt had zero turnovers against the Gamecocks, a feat achieved twice last season.

Defensive Notes
– Forced three three-and-outs in seven drives in the first half.
– Two turnovers in the first half forced by the ‘Dores.
– VU held the Gamecocks to 88 total yards in the first half.

Special Teams Notes
– Tommy Openshaw’s 36-yard field goal in the first quarter was the first field goal by Vanderbilt since Oct. 24, 2015, against Missouri.