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Nine fine, but coach eyes more

Posted: July 22, 2014 at 3:10 a.m.

Vanderbilt Coach Derek Mason inherits a team that returns just 12 starters and was picked to finish sixth in the SEC East, but he insists the Commodores have what it takes to compete for their first league championship.

Vanderbilt Coach Derek Mason inherits a team that returns just 12 starters and was picked to finish sixth in the SEC East, but he insists the Commodores have what it takes to compete for their first league championship.

The previous eight coaches who took over Vanderbilt's football program prior to Derek Mason inherited teams coming off losing seasons , including six seasons with two or fewer victories.

Vanderbilt glance

LAST SEASON 9-4, 4-4 (fourth in SEC East)

COACH Derek Mason (first season)

RETURNING STARTERS Offense 7, defense 5, special teams 1

KEY RETURNING PLAYERS RB Jerron Seymour, C Joe Townsend, DE Adam Butler, LB Darreon Herring

SEC TITLE SCENARIO New Coach Derek Mason is talking about winning Vanderbilt’s first SEC title and building on the team’s 9-4 records the past two seasons, but rising to that level won’t be easy. Playing in a fourth consecutive bowl game is a realistic goal considering the nonconference schedule.

Vanderbilt schedule

DATE;OPPONENT

Aug. 28;Temple

Sept. 6;Ole Miss*

Sept. 13;Massachusetts

Sept. 20;South Carolina*

Sept. 27;at Kentucky*

Oct. 4;at Georgia*

Oct. 11;Charleston Southern

Oct. 25;at Missouri*

Nov. 1;Old Dominion

Nov. 8;Florida*

Nov. 22;at Mississippi State*

Nov. 29;Tennessee*

*SEC game

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