Each week VandyMania.com recognizes top offensive and defensive players. Look inside to see what players VandyMania.com honors this week.
OFFENSIVE STAR OF THE GAME
On Saturday Zac Stacy faced the toughest challenge of his early career at VU when the Commodores traveled south to face the eleventh ranked LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge. Many fans questioned how a young freshman would handle the pressure of such an environment. Zac answered. In his SEC debut the freshman from Alabama
dazzled the Tigers with both his speed and unique cutting ability. Stacy helped Vanderbilt on a night when the team only amassed 210 yards of total offense. Stacy had the longest rushing gain on the night when he went for a twenty-six yard gain in the third quarter and established some much needed momentum for the Dores. Sadly the drive to cut into the Tiger lead would end in an interception. Stacy's final numbers show his true impact in this contest. He finished with twenty carries for ninety yards and also added two receptions for fourteen yards. The effort and spark that Stacy provided on the otherwise wet, dreary night earn him his second consecutive Anchor Award of the season in as many games.
DEFENSIVE STARS OF THE GAME
Defensively the Commodores are determined that they are every bit as good as any defense in the Southeastern Conference. Standing up to the LSU offense on the road would certainly be a great opportunity to show the SEC that they are for real. Two members of the VU secondary who to date have not received as much attention from the media are sophomore safety Sean Richardson and cornerback Casey Hayward. Hayward, who has firmly grasped the difficult task of to replacing D.J. Moore
, may not be known as "the guy who replaced D.J." much longer. Against a fast defense featuring several outstanding SEC performers Hayward showed his determination and excellent ability to both cover and take down receivers and running backs. Sean Richardson likewise is replacing a Commodore favorite in Rashard Langford. Richardson equaled the effort of Hayward on Saturday night and made great tackle after great tackle and delivered some big time hits as well. Richardson nearly had his first career interception but the play was wiped out by a suspect defensive holding call. Hayward and Richardson combined for twenty-three tackles on the night (Hayward 13, Richardson 10). The pair of sophomores helped lead the charge against LSU and were two of the reasons LSU was held to just 326 total yards and only twenty three points. These two young sophomores continue to impress and earn their first VandyMania Anchor Awards.