Sarah Fuller will travel with the Vanderbilt Commodores to Athens this weekend to kick against the No. 8 Georgia Bulldogs. After becoming the first woman to play in an Power 5 game last weekend, she is again Vandy's best option at kicker. All that's left standing between her and history is her team.
Fuller's story is an important one, but the circumstances kind of stink. She's kicking for the lowest-scoring team in the toughest conference in college football. Vanderbilt is 0-8 and has scored just 14.3 points per game this season, the third-lowest average in all of college football. They have attempted just seven field goals and 15 extra points in eight games.
No disrespect to Vanderbilt, an excellent university, but they stink at football. If the NCAA had any heart, they'd let her switch teams this weekend so she could guarantee she could kick some footballs that could be exchanged for points on the board. With Vandy facing their fourth ranked opponent of the season, the prospects of Fuller getting a chance to exhibit her full range of kicking skills against the 20th-best scoring defense in FBS is low.
We know she will have the opportunity for one kickoff. Will they let her really get after one or would it be better to do another targeted squib kick to prove to the jealous haters out there that she did actually mean to do that?
And after that kick, who knows. Vanderbilt managed four field goal attempts and four extra point attempts in their three previous games against their ranked SEC opponents. This is the definition of "So you're telling me there's a chance."
It's a lot of pressure on everyone involved. Vanderbilt should really want this. Fuller's success would be a bright silver lining on a bad season. Most importantly, it would be success on the team's part. They probably won't upset Georgia, unless we're currently living in a sports movie simulation. But moving the ball and getting points on the board against Georgia would be great for everyone involved. It would be a reason for Vanderbilt to celebrate this cursed college football season and a reason for the rest of the country to celebrate Vanderbilt football.
Last weekend a bunch of people watched Vanderbilt football. When Fuller kicked off, it was a nice moment for little girls to see what is actually possible. This week, Vanderbilt has a chance to give all those people something to really celebrate. Who knows when we'll get another chance.