I have been doing my Pro Prospects series with Josh Norris of Rotoworld.com for 16 games now, and it’s one of my favorite things we do each week. We will post this week’s later today, and it’s again very interesting (particularly what he says about Mike Davis).
The reason I bring that up this morning is that for the first time since Norris and I have been doing the segment, he had only one pro prospect to mention from the Gamecocks’ opponent. Even the North Carolinas of the world usually have two or three or four guys who might be on the radar. Not the Commodores.
We’ve heard a lot about how James Franklin has turned around the Vanderbilt program and has made huge strides in recruiting. Yes, the Commodores won nine games last year, but is this a team that is ready to take its place among the SEC contenders? I don’t think so.
If Franklin’s recruiting turns out to be as good as we’ve heard, our conversation with Norris should be very different next year and the year after that, but for now, the Commodores are closer to the “Your Father’s Vanderbilt” than a lot of media coverage would have you believe.
Now Vanderbilt’s one prospect, wide receiver Jordan Matthews, is a good one, but he can’t carry an entire team. I’ll save my official game pick for Saturday’s newspaper (or the preview video, which is already up), but, if you hear your friends talking about how this is a new Vanderbilt team today, tap the brakes a little on that.
My links today are the Texas A&M vs. Alabama Edition, and there are only two. The reason there are only two is they are both long and both spectacular.
First, the long one, GoodBullHunting.com, the SBNation site that covers the Aggies, has put together the most interesting and varied, and funny, preview of the game. I mean, this is seriously fantastic work.
Next, it’s Chris Brown from SmartFootball.com (maybe the most appropriately named sites out there), breaking down the problems Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel poses for Nick Saban and his defense.