Vanderbilt's Monahan out for the season

Vanderbilt has worked hard over the years to improve its depth.

But when you lose two key players less than a week into the preseason, that’s about as frustrating as it gets.

As feared, tight end Austin Monahan is out for the season after tearing the ACL in his right knee Thursday night in practice.

Talk about a guy who hasn’t been able to escape injuries. This is the third straight year that Monahan has seen his season prematurely ended by an injury. He and Brandon Barden were going to give the Commodores a nice tandem at tight end. Now, Barden is the only tight end on the roster with any game experience.

The news wasn’t quite as bad on sophomore running back Zac Stacy, but he’s questionable for the opener against Northwestern after spraining his left knee. His recovery time is expected to take anywhere from three to five weeks.

The eerie thing for the Commodores is that the injuries occurred on back-to-back plays during practice Thursday.

If you’re coaching or playing at Vanderbilt right now, you can’t help but think, “Here we go again.”

Injuries decimated the Commodores last season on both sides of the ball.

Stacy’s injury hurts Vanderbilt’s depth at running back, although Kennard Reeves was scheduled to return to practice Friday after missing the past three practices with a hamstring injury. The timeline is a little fuzzier on Wesley Tate’s return. He’s still out with a foot injury, and the Commodores have been banged up in the offensive line since the spring.