Why the return of Jared Morse is so Important

Jared Morse (VM-Stan Jones)

It was reported in The Tennessean late last week that senior defensive tackle Jared Morse was enrolled in summer classes with the intent to rejoin the team this fall. Morse remember had been dismissed from the team and subsequently left Vanderbilt during the spring after undisclosed violation of team rules. Here are three reasons why the return of Morse is so key to the success of Vandy this fall.

It was reported in The Tennessean late last week that senior defensive tackle Jared Morse was enrolled in summer classes with the intent to rejoin the team this fall. Morse remember had been dismissed from the team and subsequently left Vanderbilt during the spring after the always mysterious, yet more often than not terminal, undisclosed violation of team rules. Here are three reasons why the return of Morse is so key to the success of Vandy this fall.

Experience boost

The return of Morse is hugely important to a Vanderbilt defensive tackle rotation which is trying to replace All-SEC tackle Rob Lohr. At 300 pounds and showing surprising quickness off the snap Morse should be able to improve on a 2012 campaign which saw him rack up nine tackles for a loss in six starts. The added benefit here is that a returning Morse will allow the talented youngsters, such as Barron Dixon, who Vandy have on the depth chart to be used situationally. This is hugely important with the beating that inexperienced bodies can take during a long and grueling SEC schedule.

Caleb Azubike back to end

Perhaps the most important aspect of Morse's return is the knock on effect it has on the 'Dore pass rush and Caleb Azubike in particular. With Morse off of the team the 6-foot-4, 245 Azubike was being asked to take reps at tackle, a position he is obviously undersized to play. Now though, he can move back to his favored spot of end and look to carry on from a four sack true-freshman season which only flashed the potential of what is to come. Rarely, if ever, has Vandy had a player with the physical upside of Azubike on the roster and if he continues to develop as expected he can become the most feared pass rusher in the history of the program.

Helps make foes one dimensional

Ask any coach what the key to stopping another team is and before long the words "make them one dimensional" will be uttered. As soon as you can take away one aspect of the opponents offense they become much easier to deal with, and Morse instantly provides a boost in stopping power to the Vandy run D. The SEC still has its fair share of run the ball down your throat style offenses, and with a talented Commodore secondary just begging for the ball to be thrown their way the addition of Morse makes it more likely they will have to air it out and into trouble.

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