By Russell Lorentz, Vandy Insider
Vandy-Tennessee Game Preview
Vanderbilt Commodores (4-7, 0-7 SEC) vs. Tennessee (4-7, 0-7 SEC)
Line: Tennessee -1
When: Saturday, November 25th, 2017 – 3:00 p.m. CT, SEC Network
Site: Neyland Stadium – Knoxville, Tenn.
After roller-coaster seasons both Tennessee and Vanderbilt will try to end the 2017 season on a positive note.
Vanderbilt (4-7, 0-7 SEC) is set to take on bitter in-state rival Tennessee (4-7, 0-7 SEC) inside Neyland Stadium on Saturday afternoon. In recent memory, the ‘Dores have won 3 of the last 5 in the series, but face another quality running back in John Kelly on Saturday.
The ‘Dores maintained a strong, stingy defense leading up to the eventual loss against Alabama, but the wheels fell off as the Commodores faced a stretch of Alabama, Florida, and Georgia in consecutive weeks. Conversely, both teams try to find their first win in conference play.
Tennessee is looking to snap its eight-game conference losing skid – if the Volunteers drop the contest against Vandy it would mark their first winless conference season in program history.
Vandy fails to qualify for a bowl game after finishing the season strong with wins against Ole Miss and Tennessee last season as the ‘Dores could not exceed expectations from a year ago.
Tennessee gets quarterback Will McBride back, after he missed the LSU game. He will back up Jarrett Guarantano, who is still dealing with an ankle injury.
Vandy great Ralph Webb needs just 41 yards to move up to seventh on the list in career rush yards in the SEC.
The game plan for both teams: run the football. Both teams possess quality running backs as Tennessee (125th, 251.7 yds.) and Vanderbilt (113th, 211.5 yds.) struggle stopping the run.
Impact Players: Tennessee
Junior Running Back John Kelly: 179 att., 758 yds., 8 TD
Sophomore Marquez Callaway: 21 rec., 390 yds., 4 TD
Sophomore Safety Nigel Warrior: 78 tackles, 1.0 sacks, 3 FF, 1 INT
Impact Players: Vanderbilt
Senior Running Back Ralph Webb: 167 att., 668 yds., 8 TD
Junior Wide Reciever Trent Sherfield: 44 rec., 648 yds., 3 TD
Sophomore Defensive Back JoeJuan Williams: 38 tackles, 1 FF, 10 PBU