Clark Lea just met with the media following his debut spring practice at Vanderbilt.

While the first-year Commodore coach didn’t want to discuss any specifics when it comes to any player performances following the start of spring football in Nashville, one constant theme of the press conference came with Lea’s assertion that everything must be earned in his program.

If you noticed any photos or videos from the debut practice of the Lea era, you likely noticed none of the players had a number on their jerseys.

There was a reason for that.

“We are going to earn everything in this program,” Lea shared when asked why his players didn’t have numbers on their jerseys. “Until we understand that we rent those numbers, we don’t own them, until we are ready to work within them, leave them better for the next person to wear them, that will come. I don’t want to put a timeline on it.

“We are monitoring just the manner in which our players occupy the spaces in this football program and this campus. And that will also not all come at once, right? This will be according to each individual and their commitment level to moving this program forward. The biggest thing for me, we want to strip down all the extraneous right now and just focus on how we are building this team together. The rest of it will come in time.”

Make no mistake, there is a new leader in Nashville and it hasn’t taken very long for Lea to make his presence felt and set the tone for the rest of spring camp at Vanderbilt.

Cover photo comes courtesy of Vanderbilt Football.