Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chris Boyd's an Eagle Scout, Jordan Matthews is Jerry Rice's cousin, and Fitz Lassing's a freaking genius

So you probably know what positions they play and how many stars they got. Now here's our annual look at things you may not know about Vandy's newest football players:

• RAJAAN BENNETT (Powder Springs, Ga.): Nicknamed “RB”; oldest of four siblings; named the offensive player of the year in Georgia’s largest classification of high school

• CHRIS BOYD (Roswell, Ga.): Won numerous leadership and academic awards at school; Eagle Scout; dad’s a real estate developer, mom’s an IBM program manager

• ANDREW BRIDGES (Atlanta, Ga.): AP Scholar award winner; dad played football at Virginia and owns Cadillac dealerships; plays the guitar

• KARL BUTLER (New Orleans, La.): Worked summers in dad’s law office; high jumper in track; a New York Yankees fan

• STEVEN CLARKE (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.): Nicknamed “Steve-O”; teammates in secondary signed with Michigan and Ole Miss; plans to major in computer engineering

• CHASE GARNHAM (Fairhope, Ala.): Member of National Honor Society; clocked at 4.38 in the 40-yard dash; mom’s a kindergarten teacher

• BLAKE GOWDER (Blairsville, Ga.): Threw a no-hitter as a junior; dad’s the chief operating officer of a hospital; enjoys trout fishing

• ANDRE HAL (Port Allen, La.): Nicknamed “Dre”; mom owns two beauty salons, dad’s a construction worker; same school as Super Bowl hero Tracy Porter of the Saints

• JAMES KITTREDGE (Ramsey, N.J.): Four-year letterman for nation’s No. 1 high school football team; played varsity lacrosse; dad played football at South Carolina

• JONATHAN KRAUSE (Snellville, Ga.): Nicknamed “Smoove”; kin to Bears fullback Jason McKie and former 76ers guard Aaron McKie; enjoys playing video games

• KENNY LADLER (Stone Mountain, Ga.): First Vandy football freshman to enroll early; one of four siblings; eight classmates received major college football scholarships

• FITZ LASSING (Nashville, Tenn.): Missed a perfect SAT score by 10 points; third generation Vanderbilt student; organized a summer lacrosse camp for boys.

• JORDAN MATTHEWS (Madison, Ala.): Plans to major in economics; plays the piano; his favorite athlete is Earl Bennett; cousin of Jerry Rice

• JARED MORSE (Oxford, Ala.): Dad’s a truck driver and mom owns a Quiznos; grandfather played basketball for Alabama; plays guitar – well, Guitar Hero

• TRENT PRUITT (Fitzgerald, Ga.): Dad’s head football coach and mom’s guidance counselor; both brothers played at Valdosta State; enjoys playing ping pong

• GRANT RAMSAY (Marietta, Ga.): Helped Pope High School to first winning record in nearly a decade; dad’s CEO of a marketing firm; born in Illinois and a big Bears fan

• JORDAN RODGERS (Chico, Calif.): Grew 3 inches while attending junior college; dad is a chiropractor; brother Aaron is starting quarterback for the Green Bay Packers

• THOMAS RYAN (Marathon, Fla.): Plays trumpet and French horn; dad is a dive boat captain near Key Largo; scuba diver who once ran a live bait business

• ANDRE SIMMONS (Lofton, Va.): Born in Germany; dad played football at Louisiana-Monroe; big Saints fan who wants to be a college football coach

• CAREY SPEAR (Mayfield Village, Ohio): Four-year letterman in football and soccer; mom’s an electrical engineer; an accomplished pianist

• LOGAN STEWART (Boiling Springs, S.C.): Nicknamed “Big Red”; hobbies include radio broadcasting and fishing; wants to become a football coach

• VINCE TAYLOR (Hattiesburg, Miss.): Nickname is “VT”; a teammate of Steve McNair Jr.; a big fan of the Chicago Bears

• CHASE WHITE (Plano, Texas): Named Texas Academic All-State; daily faced Jackson Jeffcoat, nation’s top recruits; movie trivia expert

• KYLE WOESTMANN (Marietta, Ga.): Plans to study pre-medicine; sister attends U. of Georgia and he turned down an offer to play for Bulldogs; snowboarder and fisherman

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