Vanderbilt is National Team of the Week

James Franklin

DALLAS (FWAA) – The Vanderbilt Commodores (5-4) snapped a 22-game losing streak to Florida and beat the Gators in The Swamp for the first time since 1945 with a 34-17 win. The key road victory now has Vandy one win shy of a third consecutive bowl season and earned the Commodores the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week honor for games of the weekend of Nov. 9.

The announcement came exclusively on SiriusXM Radio's "College Sports Today," hosted by Mark Packer and Eddie George.

The Commodores intercepted three passes in the first two-and-a-half quarters, building a 24-3 lead after starting possessions inside the Gators' 22-yard line after each takeaway. The short fields enabled Vanderbilt to win with only 12 first downs and 187 total yards.

In addition to winning for the first time in Gainesville in 68 years, the win marked the first time in school history that Vandy has defeated SEC rivals Florida and Georgia in the same season.

"We're a fundamentalist program, and I think that's why over time we get better. By really relying on your fundamentals and emphasizing fundamentals, I think you have a chance to have some success," Vanderbilt head coach James Franklin said after the game. "If you look over our last year and a half, we're 6-0 in the month of November, which if you study Vanderbilt's history that hasn't always been the case this late in the season."

Other Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week nominees for the weekend of Nov. 9 included:

Alabama (9-0): The top-ranked Crimson Tide ran away from No. 10 LSU in the second half to record an impressive 38-17 win. Alabama allowed only 52 yards in the second half while its offense broke a 17-17 third-quarter tie.

Stanford (8-1): The Cardinal took control of the Pac-12 North Division with a 26-20 win over Oregon. Stanford led 26-0 in the fourth quarter before Oregon, who came in aberging almost 56 points per game, scored the game's final 20 points. Tyler Gaffney led Stanford with 157 rushing yards on a school-record 45 carries.

The Football Writers Association of America has named a national team of the week since the 2002 season. This is the ninth season that the award has been sponsored by the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.

Members of the FWAA All-America Committee decide the weekly honor. Each remaining Monday during the 2013 college football regular season, the FWAA will name the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week.

Founded in 1971, the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl has hosted seven games that have decided the college football national championship, including four Bowl Championship Series title games. This season, the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl will be played on Jan. 1, 2014, at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., and the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl will be played on Dec. 28, 2013, at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.

The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,200 men and women who cover college football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include gameday operations, major awards and its annual All-America team. For more information about the FWAA and its award programs, contact Steve Richardson at tiger@fwaa.com or 972-713-6198.

For more information on the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week, go to footballwriters.com or fiestabowl.org.

2013 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Teams of the Week

• Weekend of Aug. 31: North Dakota State Bison
• Weekend of Sept. 7: BYU Cougars
• Weekend of Sept. 14: UCLA Bruins
• Weekend of Sept. 21: Stanford Cardinal
• Weekend of Sept. 28: Georgia Bulldogs
• Weekend of Oct. 5: Florida State Seminoles
• Weekend of Oct. 12: Texas Longhorns
• Weekend of Oct. 19: UCF Knights
• Weekend of Oct. 26: Duke Blue Devils
• Weekend of Nov. 2: Michigan State Spartans
• Weekend of Nov. 9: Vanderbilt Commodores

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