With Spring practice and workouts going on during the long offseason, there’s still plenty of time to set things for the not too distant future. All SEC teams take their time to set non-conference schedules for the next five years or so regardless of who’s the head coach and such. What’s usually important is having the spots to fill ahead of time to know who or what to prepare for. Vanderbilt is wasting no time doing so. Not only have they set their schedule for 2020, but they went much more beyond that.
The Commodores went as far as scheduling schools they haven’t faced in many, many years. The Mercer Bears from the Southern Conference revived their football program in 2013, and have since built up a record of 16-8 under head coach Bobby Lamb. The Bears are 0-4 all time against Vanderbilt, their last game played in 1932. Mercer will however start their run against the SEC early in 2017 when they faceAlabama and Auburn, then turn around to face Alabama again in 2021. Vanderbilt will be in 2020.
Another series to get renewed in the not too distant future is against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons out of the ACC, but will have to wait another six years to do so. Vanderbilt and Wake Forest will resume play in a home and home series in 2022 and 2023. The longest series the two teams had was from 2010 to 2013, Vanderbilt winning the last three. Those three wins were all under former head coach James Franklin. There first game was played in 1964, and Vanderbilt leads the all time series 10-6.
This goes to show that it is never too early to set your schedule well ahead of time, because you never know if one school can pull out on you. But facing schools you haven’t faced since 1932 has to be just as exciting. Who knows it might spark a new rivalry, even within the FCS or the ACC. Every game is always worth looking forward to.
Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Bryan Law