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Stop Pickin' on Vandy!

Just about any time you read a mention of Vanderbilt football, whether on a blog or in a newspaper article or in some other medium, the program is demeaned. And I ask folks to chill. Just a bit.

Obviously, Vanderbilt is a (if not the) bottom-feeder of the Southeastern Conference. They've not won a conference title in many decades, and their Varsity athletics are now organized by the same group that handles intramurals. However, I encourage fans to give Vandy a break.

Vanderbilt plays in the SEC, arguably the most competitive conference in major college football. And they suck in it. So why should fans/journalists give them slack? Because they've never stopped. Vanderbilt University has clearly been out of SEC Championship contention for many years. If they chose, they could bolt to some "lesser" conference, and (assuming the same personnell) compete for a conference title much more often.

But Vanderbilt respects the tradition of its conference, which it helped found. (Okay, Tech does not, whatever. GT helped found the SEC but later bolted. This is not the point of the post, so I ask that it not be a major thread in the comments section.) Rather than head for greener pastures, Vandy runs with their long-time crew, and unfortunately loses a lot.

I do not suggest, and do not think, that Vanderbilt is satisfied with their current role. Doubtless, the school hopes (and hopefully expects) to compete for a conference title as soon as possible. But in the mean time, I implore journa-/bloga-lists to not be too hard on Vanderbilt. At times it seems like they get less respect than worse, but not perennially-faced, teams (since the worse teams are faced less often, so there's not the familiarity to their suckiness).

Vandy does not have to be your whipping boy, but they accept it. And for that, I commend their attitude.

(Notes: (1) Most of these comments could apply to Dule within the ACC. (2) This post does not consider sports other than football. I do not consider this inappropriate, since football is clearly the most loved/influential sport at colleges.)

"Notes: (1) Most of these comments could apply to Dule within the ACC."

And once upon a time, they applied to Northwestern in the Big Ten. Both Vandy and NW have that small private school 'All Academic Team' quality about them and there's no reason why they can't one day make their detractors eat those words.

College football is coaching. Northwestern caught a good run of them and turned into something very special for a while. Vandy can do it too.

Nice post

Vandy has never won the SEC title. It has not been "several decades" as you say; it hasn't ever happened. Georgia Tech and Tulane have more SEC championships, and they haven't been conference members since the '60s.

Vandy does not care about winning football games. What they do care about is money. They could go to a smaller conference and be more competitive, but they would not get the $$$ they now get through revenue sharing in the SEC. In fact, by not spending money on team travel, ticket buyouts, and official party accomodations, they actually make more money by not going to bowl games.

Don't feel sorry for Vanderbilt.

Correct, Vandy has never won the SEC, but they have several SIAA and Southern Conference Championships. I probably should have noted that, but this post was made at like 3 AM after I got back from the bars.

Haha, who the fuck cares about Vandy? Other than our cowbell series trophy and Reggie Ball's scrambling heroics I'd say no one besides Jay Cutler and his dad.

There is more parity in the Big 10 than the SEC. In the last 16 seasons ten of the eleven Big 10 teams have won at least a share of the Big 10 championship. You have to go all the way back to 1967 for Indiana to have done it.

The top 6 teams in the SEC are consistently much stronger than the other six teams. You have to go back to the mid-70s to find one of the other teams winning a share of the SEC title.

Vandy will NEVER compete in the SEC on a regular basis. At best, they'll play the roll of the spoiler on occasion (like last year.)

Vandy is awesome solely because Nashville is a sweet town to visit for away games. That's about it.

Could not agree more with 8th Maxim.

Screw Vandy and their fans. An incredibly arrogant group of rich snotty kids.

As a Middle Tennessee fan who has had to wade through drunken vandy frat boys screaming obscenties at the top of their lungs and trying to pick fights after the commodores lost each of the last three football games against the Blue Raiders, I say let them suffer for another couple decades without a winning season.

Nice post. And yes, there are a few that cry for a Magnolia League, but almost all Vandy fans are realistic enough to know that Vandy cannot win the SEC title in the near future, but anyone who's watched the Dores knows the level of growth that's gone on in the last 3 years. We're not yet competitive in the league, but we're generally competive against any single team.

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