The top 10 players returning to the Vanderbilt Commodores for the 2020 college football season.
Important to note that this list is based upon last year's data and film from on each specific team as well as judgment based upon the player's position both his skill and the level of talent around him at the said position and influential cohorts. Positional value also plays a large factor in these rankings as does the offensive or defensive scheme.
1. Dayo Odeyingbo, DE
2. Jaylen Mahoney, CB
3. Tyler Sten, T
4. Cam Johnson, WR
5. Andre Mintze, Edge
6. Randall Haynie, CB
7. BJ Anderson, CB
8. Dimitri Moore, LB
9. Tae Daley, S
10. Deshaun Jerkins, S
Honorable Mention: Cole Clemens, G; Chris Pierce, WR; Grant Miller, C; Jonathan Stewart, T
The strength of this Vandy team will be on defense in 2020 as they return a few strong players on offense, especially in Johnson, who secured 30 receptions for 316 yards but 215 yards after the catch. He did a ton of work on his own and should be a valuable asset for the passing game, it's just got to find his hands. Sten and Stewart as well as Clemens and Pierce are returning on the offensive line but they have to replace a ton of stars and snaps on offense.
So, it's a great thing that of their top 10 returning players. it could be argued for sure that eight of them are on defense. And that list starts with Odeyingbo. He racked up a ton of pressures last season off the edge, setting the tone with a combined 12 sacks and hits on the quarterback. He also did his part in run defense as he represents a solid tackler in space. Mintze also comes off the edge with great burst, recording a team-high in sacks a season ago despite fewer than 100 pass-rushes than Odeyingbo. Together, they form a solid 1-2 pass-rushing duo.
Then there's the cornerback trio with Mahoney representing one of the better cover cornerbacks in the conference last season, he just didn't see enough targets to do enough damage in the box score. According to SIS, Mahoney was targeted nearly 20 times and allowed just 10 catches for fewer than 100 yards with a pick and two pass breakups to his credit.
Haynie and Anderson also had great flashes in coverage, as Haynie didn't allow a touchdown all season long and Anderson had three pass breakups to his credit.