Vanderbilt football Head Coach Derek Mason joined ESPN 102.5 The Game’s Braden and Fitz to discuss bouncing back from the Alabama game and moving ahead to Florida.
Coach Mason recognizes Vandy’s struggle against Alabama, a 59-0 loss Saturday afternoon wasn’t the Commodores’ best performance. Mason believes their reaction to losing will define his team.
“It’s really about the response … adversity is going to come and what happens next is really what defines you. We need a quick and swift response in terms of what happened against Alabama”, Mason said, “Now what we have to do is take advantage of the opportunity we have on Saturday”
Mason expects a fast turnaround from the Commodores, they travel to The Swamp this weekend to play the defending SEC East Champion Florida Gators.
Florida announced Luke Del Rio as their starting quarterback this weekend. This came as a surprise after Feleipe Franks spent the most time at quarterback for the Gators this season and threw the game-winning touchdown pass against Tennessee.
“Luke Del Rio is a quarterback who’s a senior, he’s played in ball games. When you talk about experience, he’s played in an SEC championship game”, Coach Mason said, “He’s probably the logical choice in terms of leadership, command of the locker room, field experience, and mastery of the offense.”
Vanderbilt must prove themselves against the Gators to compete in the SEC East. After beating Kansas State, expectations soared for the Commodores – now they have to knock off the East’s top dog.
To amp his team up for the Gators, Vanderbilt has “West Coast Wednesdays” where they blast music throughout practice and in their football facilities. “West Coast Wednesday” typically is a fast paced practice with high energy where Mason and his staff push competitiveness with their players.
“Win the day” is Mason’s mantra heading into Florida week. After a big loss to the Crimson Tide the Commodores look to establish themselves in the SEC East by practicing hard each day.
To hear ESPN 102.5 The Game’s Braden and Fitz’s full interview with Coach Mason click on the SoundCloud link below.