Vanderbilt football coach Clark Lea: 'Our plan is to be playing in a bowl game'

Aria Gerson
Nashville Tennessean

Vanderbilt football coach Clark Lea said Tuesday he didn't make the decision whether to play a 13th game or take an extra bye week after playing at Hawaii. 

The previous staff under Derek Mason opted for the second bye week. But, Lea said, he hopes his team will get the best of both worlds. 

"I would say that we are playing 13 games, that's our plan is to be playing in a bowl game," Lea said Tuesday.

After the Commodores' 63-10 drubbing of Hawaii, ESPN's FPI gives Vanderbilt a 33.3% chance of getting at least the six wins typically required to make a bowl game. Another metric, Fremeau Efficiency Index, gives the Commodores an 18% chance of getting bowl eligible.

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Injury updates

Players who are out for Saturday's game against Elon include defensive linemen Devin Lee, Brayden Bapst, Daevion Davis and Yilanan Ouattara; centers Julian Hernandez and Jake Ketschek; running back Patrick Smith and cornerback Trudell Berry.

All of those players are "week-to-week," according to Lea.

The most notable position impacted by injuries is center, where the starter, Hernandez, and backup, Ketschek, both suffered injuries against the Rainbow Warriors. Vanderbilt's depth chart instead lists sophomore Delfin Xavier Castillo at center with freshman Grayson Morgan as his backup.

Aria Gerson covers Vanderbilt athletics for The Tennessean. Contact her at or on Twitter @aria_gerson.