Vanderbilt brings out the black helmets

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Mixing and matching uniforms has become the norm in college football and Vanderbilt has changed up its road wardrobe today.

Instead of going with the traditional gold helmets and white jerseys and pants, the Commodores are sporting black helmets on top of their white uniforms.

Will it add some extra energy for the lovable Commodores tonight? Probably not, but they are fun to look at.

The Gamecocks seem pretty relaxed before the game, but expect Marcus Lattimore to continue to carry much of the offensive load tonight. Backup Kenny Miles, who hurt his hand against Georgia, isn't dressed. That means the Gamecocks could look to get some carries out of junior Eric Baker and/or freshman Brandon Wilds.

Miles hasn't been much of a factor this season, carrying the ball once for 1 yard, but neither of the other backs have recorded any stats this year.

As for Vanderbilt, it looks like senior tight end Brandon Barden will miss his second straight start with an ankle injury. He was injured in Vandy's win over Conneticut in Week 2. His injury doesn't appear season-ending, but with next week being the bye for the Commodores, it makes sense to rest him now.

We might not see much -- if any -- of Vandy running back Warren Norman, either. Norman has yet to play this season and still seems to be recovering from last year's knee surgery.

The Commodores have been pretty successful with the running duo of Zac Stacy (29 carries for 262 yards and touchdown) and Jerron Seymour (28 carries, 145 yards and two scores), so not having Norman is nothing new for this team, but he does have big-play ability that the Commodores would love to have tonight.

Pregame festivities are almost done and the the smoke from the fireworks has cleared, so that means it's time for some nighttime football.

Should be a fun one in Columbia.