Vanderbilt-Houston Preview Capsule
Vanderbilt (3-4) at No. 18 Houston (7-0), 7 p.m. ET (ESPN2)
Line: Houston by 12
Series Record: Vanderbilt leads 1-0
WHAT’S AT STAKE
With a victory, Houston will earn its second win of the season against a power five conference school and remain undefeated. Vanderbilt is looking to keep its bowl hopes alive and a win Saturday will get the Commodores to .500 for the first time this season.
Houston’s high-scoring offense against Vanderbilt’s shutdown defense. The Cougars can score in bunches, ranking fourth nationally with 47.6 points per game while rushing for the seventh-most yards in the nation, with 291.7 yards per game and passing for 269.4 yards a contest to come to 561.1 yards per game in total offense, fifth best in the country. Vanderbilt is tied for 13th nationally giving up just 16.3 points per game as the Commodores rank third nationally on third-down conversions (22 percent allowed).
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Vanderbilt: RB Ralph Webb. The sophomore running back leads the rushing attack with 594 yards and four touchdowns on 150 carries. In Vanderbilt’s last two wins, Webb has rushed for 254 yards and two touchdowns, including his lone 100-yard rushing game of the season against Middle Tennessee State when he rushed for 155. When Webb scores a rushing touchdown, the Commodores are 3-0 this season.
Houston: QB Greg Ward Jr. The junior quarterback leads the nation with 15 rushing touchdowns and is the only player nationally to average over 200 yards passing and over 90 yards rushing. He has thrown for 247.7 yards a game and rushed for 96.7 yards.
FACTS & FIGURES
The Cougars are one of three undefeated teams nationally with at least five wins of 21 points or more, joining Baylor and Ohio State … Houston is trying to go 8-0 for the fourth time in school history and first time since 2011. … Tom Herman is the only new coach in the nation still undefeated. … Vanderbilt has lost sixth straight against ranked opponents and has not won against over a ranked foe since Oct. 5, 2013 – a 31-27 win over Georgia. … The only meeting between the two schools was a 41-24 Vanderbilt win in the 2014 BBVA Compass Bowl. . Vanderbilt is 17-12-2 all-time against schools from Texas.