Vanderbilt pulled off one of the biggest upsets in school history Saturday by defeating sixth-ranked South Carolina 17-6 in Columbia, S.C.
It tied for the highest-ranked opponent VU has ever defeated. The Commodores defeated No. 6 LSU 7-6 in Nashville in 1937. Prior to Saturday, Vanderbilt's last win over a top 10 team was over No. 8 Auburn in the 1955 Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla.
Saturday's win was also Vanderbilt's first true road win over a top 10 opponent. VU's last regular season win over a top 10 opponent was a 24-10 win in Nashville over No. 8 Florida in 1974.
"It feels pretty good," said Commodore cornerback D.J. Moore, who intercepted two passes. "Besides them being the No. 6 team in the nation, we're trying to get to a bowl game. We haven't done that in awhile, so it's a big step towards it."
The Commodores improved to 4-3 and 2-3 in Southeastern Conference. South Carolina fell to 6-2 and 3-2.
VU quarterback Mackenzi Adams received his first career start and completed eight of 16 passes for 123 yards. He played the entire game and helped lead the Commodores to an early 17-0 lead by firing touchdown passes in the first half to wide receivers George Smith and Justin Wheeler.
Vanderbilt's aggressive, blitzing defense recorded six sacks and four turnovers while allowing only 280 yards of total offense.
"We were aggressive on defense," Johnson said. "We were bringing five at least 70 percent every play."
South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier lost to Vanderbilt for the first time, falling to 14-1.
"I'm not shocked at losing to Vandy," Spurrier said. "They're a good team. They were obviously a lot better than us today. We knew all along that we were sort of living on the edge at 6-1.
"We're not clobbering anybody, but we certainly played better against Kentucky and Mississippi State than we did today. We had our chances today. We had our chances and went backwards and couldn't score a touchdown. It's as simple as that."