Vanderbilt held scoreless for first time in nearly seven years

Saturday, October 16, 2010 at 2:38pm
Staff reports

Vanderbilt’s defense allowed points on five straight possessions beginning early in the second quarter, and the offense managed just 140 yards and nine first downs in a 43-0 loss at Georgia on Saturday.

It was the first time in 76 games (a 48-0 loss to Tennessee on Nov. 22, 2003) that VU was held scoreless. The last chance to put points on the board was lost when John Cole mishandled a punt and the Bulldogs recovered with 1:05 to play.

"Don't you get embarrassed when you get shutout -- whether it's horse shoes, ping pong or whatever?" coach Robbie Caldwell said. "... This was a well-executed plan gone awry. We got whipped in every phase of the game - offense, defense, special teams."

The Commodores (2-4, 1-2) finally got a stop when Georgia kicker Blair Walsh missed a 31-yard field goal with 10:54 remaining.

Prior to that the Bulldogs (3-4, 2-3) pulled away with a stretch of four touchdowns (two rushing, two passing) and a field goal with drives that ranged from 32 to 88 yards and took as much as 6:46 off the clock.

"This was a great game by the offense and defense," Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray said. "It was the first real full of game of the year. The defense did a great job of getting off of the field and getting the offense the ball with great field position."

Quarterback Larry Smith completed his first two passes, the second to tight end Brandon Barden for 28 yards. After that, Smith hit on just three of 12 attempts for 33 yards before he gave way to senior Jared Funk early in the fourth quarter. Funk was 1-for-5 for 12 yards.

The run game did not fare any better as running backs Zac Stacy (10 carries, 44 yards) and Warren Norman (7-23) were held in check.

Georgia had both a 100-yard rusher in Washaun Ealey (17-123) and a 100-yard receiver in Kris Durham (4-112). Ealey and Durham each scored a touchdown.

"We took the opening drive down the field and had a chance to get something done, but we just didn't make the plays," Caldwell said. "... Some days you make it some days you don't. It was just very disappointing. We just got whipped."