The Associated Press/University of Vanderbilt Athletics Department
LEXINGTON, KY - Vanderbilt dominated Kentucky on offense, defense and special teams Saturday to jump to a 27-point halftime lead and coast to a 40-0 win.
Quarterback Jordan Rodgers completed 18-of-29 passes for 220 yards, two touchdowns and one interception, and three different Commodores running backs scored rushing touchdowns against the overmatched Kentucky defense.
Vanderbilt's 40-point victory margin was its largest against the Wildcats in 96 years. In the teams' 85 meetings - 40 won by Vanderbilt - the only Commodores victories that were more lopsided were 45-0 in 1916 and 50-0 in 1897.
The Commodores (5-4, 3-3 Southeastern Conference) scored touchdowns on four of their five first-half drives, none of which took longer than 4 minutes, 19 seconds.
Rodgers drove Vanderbilt 71 yards on 11 plays to begin the game, ending with a 34-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Matthews. Rodgers also threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to Chris Boyd in the second quarter.
Vanderbilt relied on its offense and Kentucky's special-teams miscues to start drives in good field position and move the ball quickly thereafter. The Wildcats were penalized twice for interfering with the catch on punts on consecutive second-quarter drives, both of which Vanderbilt turned into touchdowns.
Kentucky (1-9, 0-7) missed an early scoring opportunity on a 16-play, 49-yard drive that consumed 7:10. After converting a fourth-down play at the Vanderbilt 28-yard line, the Wildcats were pushed back, and Craig McIntosh missed a 50-yard field goal attempt on fourth-and-15.
The Wildcats made it into the red zone only once in the game. In the third quarter, sophomore safety Ashely Lowery intercepted a Rodgers pass in Vanderbilt territory and returned it to the Commodores 25-yard line, and a personal foul on the return pushed Kentucky up to the 12-yard line.
But Kentucky turned the ball over on downs in four plays.