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The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

BREAKING: Head Coach Derek Mason to return to Vanderbilt in 2020

Athletic Director Malcolm Turner tweeted his support for Mason early Tuesday morning.
Hunter Long
Head Coach Derek Mason addresses Malcolm Turner’s announcement in his Tuesday press conference. (Hustler Multimedia/Hunter Long)

This story will continue to be updated as The Vanderbilt Hustler receives more information.

Updated November 19 at 12:50 p.m.

Derek Mason will be on the sidelines come the opening week of the 2020 Commodore football season. Athletic Director Malcolm Turner announced on Tuesday that he would be retaining the Vanderbilt head coach, bringing him back for his seventh season at the helm.

“I want to make it very clear that Derek Mason will be our head football coach moving forward,” Turner said in a tweet. “Coach Mason has my full support and I am committed to working with him to ensure our football program has the necessary resources and support to succeed.”

Athletics reiterated the information from the Tweet in an email to The Hustler Tuesday morning.

Mason’s team is 2-8 this season and 1-6 in SEC play. In his six years at the helm, Vanderbilt is 26-46 overall and 10-37 in conference games. He has also taken the Commodores to two bowl games in the past three years, going 0-2 in such games. The Commodores have never had a winning record under his leadership.

“We are in the midst of developing a new and robust athletic strategic plan with the vision to put the football program and all of our varsity sports in a position to win on and off the field of play,” Turner continued. “Coach Mason is committed to leading Vanderbilt’s football program the right way and we will move forward in that spirit together.”

Mason took the podium at 12:15 p.m. on Tuesday to address Turner’s announcement.

“I definitely appreciate the support of Malcolm Turner and this university,” Mason said. “When you look at where we are, that’s not where we want to be. The standard is higher. We understand that we’re gonna continue to work and grind.”

Mason talked about how Turner has been involved in the football program internally and has looked closely at other programs to see how Vanderbilt compares.

“Our conversations have been short and very very specific about what is our best Vanderbilt,” Mason said. “I’ve been sort of just in a zone just trying to figure out exactly what I need to do within my own program, but I really appreciated him going to look at other places and other programs and seeing how Vanderbilt stacks up. There’s a lot of factors in there but when you look at it. You talk about facilities, you talk about recruiting, understanding who we are and making sure that we resource ourselves properly.”

Mason reverberated Turner’s statements that Vanderbilt needs more resources to be competitive and cited stability as a driving force in making progress.

“Consistent change never leads you to where you want to go,” Mason continued. “You’ve got to be growing but you’ve got to have some stability.”

Tight end Cody Markel echoed his coach’s sentiment.

“There’s always a sense of continuity that’s really great,” said Markel. “I know everyone on the team thinks that Coach Mason’s the man for the job and I don’t think that’s changed.”

“Vanderbilt looks different than the other teams in this conference,” Mason said.

The program might look different, but going forward, the man on the sidelines will be the exact same.

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About the Contributors
Max Schneider
Max Schneider, Former Sports Editor

Max Schneider (’20) was the Sports Editor for the Vanderbilt Hustler. He has been on staff since the first semester of his freshman year, first as a staff writer and shortly thereafter as the Deputy Sports Editor. Max also serves as the host of VU Sports Wired on Vanderbilt Television and The Hustler Sports 30 on VandyRadio.

He majored in communications studies and political science in the College of Arts and Science. Max has had bylines on and has previously worked for The Nashville Predators, The Players’ Tribune and Nashville SC. He has attended several events as credentialed media, including the 2019 College Baseball World Series, the 2019 NBA Draft and the 2018 Texas Bowl.

Max is a native New Yorker and a die-hard Jets fan still holding out hope.

For tips, please reach out to: [email protected] or find him on Twitter or LinkedIn
Hunter Long
Hunter Long, Former Multimedia Director
Hunter Long (’21) is from Austin, TX and double majored in molecular biology and medicine, health and society. He is an avid lover of film photography, good music and all things coffee. He can be reached at [email protected].    
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Comments (2)

The Vanderbilt Hustler welcomes and encourages readers to engage with content and express opinions through the comment sections on our website and social media platforms. The Hustler reserves the right to remove comments that contain vulgarity, hate speech, personal attacks or that appear to be spam, commercial promotion or impersonation. The comment sections are moderated by our Editor-in-Chief, Rachael Perrotta, and our Social Media Director, Chloe Postlewaite. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected].
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Davis Mendoza
4 years ago

Why? Does Turner really want to tie his legacy at Vandy to Mason? Have some pride…give your students something to look forward to and be proud of. Getting blown out every week is inexcusable for a supposed “defensive” coach. Student don’t show up because they’re embarrassed of the product on the field and how they’re being represented. You’re an SEC school – ACT LIKE IT. Stop treating your football team like you’re some DIII school in backwoods Tennessee. Have some pride and give your students something to be proud of and support.

Ryan Spitzer
4 years ago

Kudos to ADMT for clearly and promptly announcing his commitment to keeping CDM! Now let’s get back to making things better!