NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Earl Bennett caught nine passes for 93 yards and a touchdown to lead Vanderbilt's 30-7 rout of Eastern Michigan on Saturday night, giving the Commodores their first consecutive wins in a year.
Vanderbilt (3-1) forced a season-high five turnovers and need three victories in their final eight games to qualify for their first bowl appearance since 1982. The Eagles (2-3, 1-1 Mid-American Conference) managed just 173 total offensive yards, and lost to an SEC school for the third-straight time since 2001 to snap their two-game winning streak.
Bennett electrified an unusually rowdy crowd of 37,220 with a 47-yard touchdown reception from Chris Nickson to give the Commodores an early 10-0 lead. The two-time All-SEC receiver closed within 10 catches of breaking the SEC career record for receptions, held by Kentucky's Craig Yeast with 208.
Andy Schmitt was 13-for-24 with 111 yards passing for Eastern Michigan, which didn't cross midfield until halfway through the third quarter. Schmitt threw four interceptions, including one that D.J. Moore returned 24 yards for a touchdown to blow the game open 27-7.
Vanderbilt's offense was sloppy throughout, committing five turnovers and fumbling four other times. Nickson was 14-for-28 with 168 yards passing and threw all five interceptions for the Commodores, who also failed to convert on several third-and-short situations.
The consecutive victories were the first for Vanderbilt since last September when they defeated Tennessee State and Temple. The Commodores have enjoyed consecutive victories on just four occasions in the last eight years.