Doster Earns Preseason Recognition; Named Second Team All-SEC
Tailback in Initial Poll 5/28/03
sophomore Kwane Doster, one of the top returning running backs
in the Southeastern Conference, has earned All-SEC honors
in the South's first preseason ballot.
Doster was named to the second team All-SEC offense, and
also was the second leading vote getter in the "Best
Kick Returner" category in the ballot, published earlier
this week as part of the 57th annual Birmingham News SEC Football
Preview. Sports information directors from the SEC's 12 member
universities voted on the team.
Doster and the Commodores will open the 2003 season at Vanderbilt
Stadium August 30 against Ole Miss. The Rebels are led by
preseason Heisman Trophy candidate, quarterback Eli Manning.
Doster is coming off a superb 2002 season. Doster became
the Commodores' first SEC Freshman of the Year after setting
a new team freshman record with 798 rushing yards. He ended
the season as the conference's sixth leading rusher and top
freshman producer. A third team freshman All-American pick
by the Sporting News, Doster was also fourth in the SEC in
The Tampa native started the season as a reserve, but quickly
found a substantial role after a season-ending injury to junior
Ronald Hatcher. Doster earned his first collegiate start halfway
through the season after another tailback, sophomore Norval
McKenzie, was injured prior to the Commodores' encounter with
Middle Tennessee. He rewarded Vanderbilt coaches by rushing
for more than 100 yards in his two following starts.
Doster burst onto the SEC scene in a road contest at Ole
Miss. After scoring his first collegiate touchdown in the
first half, Doster led a huge fourth-quarter rally by the
Commodores. With the Rebels up 38-17, Doster sparked the Vanderbilt
comeback with a 95-yard kickoff return, then added several
first-down carries to ignite a pair of other touchdown drives
enabling the Commodores to tie the score, 38-38.
Doster established SEC and team marks in the performance.
He smashed the SEC record kickoff return yardage in a single
game (243 yards) and the Vanderbilt mark for all-purpose yards
in a single game (344 yards). It was the highest single-game
total in the SEC last year.
Before his responsibilities increased at tailback, Doster
was among the nation's best kickoff returners. His 25.7-yard
average was the highest production by a Vanderbilt athlete
in 58 years. He ended the season second in the SEC to Kentucky
All-American Derek Abney and 17th in the NCAA. Doster did
not return kicks in the squad's last four games.
Doster enters the 2003 preseason as the No. 1 tailback in
the Commodores' Power I alignment, though he is expected to
be pushed by McKenzie, who returned to full strength this
spring from the injury.