Category Archives: Ivy League

Know Your 2017 Opponents: Penn

Last season, there were two iconic games that set the tone for the Lehigh football season - one a tough loss, the other a tough victory.

The first iconic moment was simply called "the Monmouth game" - the season-opening game where the Mountain Hawks started out slow, allowed the other Hawks to build up a double-digit lead, and after a furious comeback, Lehigh came up just short.  Lehigh had multiple opportunities to seize control - but didn't.

It threatened to become the narrative that defined the season - that is, until the second iconic game, which was simply called "the Penn game", and also broke down to a specific moment - the end of the first half.
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My FCS Top 25, 10/4/2016

You didn't ask for them, but here's my pick for this week's FCS Top 25.

This week's candidate for the LFN Top 25 curse?  Sacred Heart, with Colgate a very close second, but there were a lot of teams in the lower reaches of my Top 25 that suffered defeat, in a list that includes Fordham, Southern Utah and (again) William and Mary, who suffered a second straight crushing defeat in two weeks, this time at the hands of New Hampshire.

Never in a million years did I ever think Tennessee State, Cornell and North Carolina A&T would simultaneously be in my Top 25, yet there they are.

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Lehigh 63, Yale 35 Postgame Thoughts: The World May Have Changed, But College Football Fans Haven’t

The timing between college football games I attended at the Yale Bowl was a shade under thirty-nine years.

How were both games similar?

Well, in both games Yale lost.  Also, both games were played at the Yale Bowl.  In addition, there were fans at both games wanting to have a great college football experience.

That's where the similarities end.

Many thoughts went through my head during the game this weekend, an incredibly encouraging one for Lehigh as they are surging, on a three game winning streak going into league play after scoring a grand total of 154 points in the last three games, or, if you're scoring at home, an average of over 51 points per game.

But not all the thoughts were ones about Lehigh, or Yale, or the game at hand.  Many of the thoughts I had, after staring out at the 2,196 souls that came out on an overcast, but perfectly adequate weather day to watch an extremely entertaining game, involved the fans that did not show up at one of the iconic, most storied venues in college sports.

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Lehigh At Yale Game Preview: Going Back To Where It All Began For Me

For one reason or another, I hadn't been back.

Since my undergraduate years, I hadn't gone to see Lehigh play Yale at the Yale Bowl.  It was either too long a trip as an undergraduate to catch the Engineers, a trip to Disney with the family interfered, or maybe I was just saving up my energy for a big conference game the following week.

No matter what it really was, it really was a bucket of excuses, with the ultimate result being I hadn't gone back, even though Lehigh had played there so often.

It feels almost criminal, even though I have driven past the stadium many times.

This weekend, for the first time since a beautiful night for football in October of 1977, I will be heading back to the iconic Yale Bowl.

And in contemplating this trip, a flood of memories returned from my first trip there - my first-ever college football game, and thus the very first inspiration for what I would end up doing the rest of my life.
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Know Your 2016 Opponents: Penn

We continue the series "Know Your 2016 Opponents" a mere 9 (!) days away from the opening of the 2016 football season.

This might be a good time, for your reading pleasure, to remind you that these are modified with some more awesome Lehigh information from the originals over at The College Sports Journal.

It's also a good time to remind you that I already have written a bunch of these:

Bucknell
Georgetown
Fordham
Holy Cross
Lafayette
Princeton
Yale

To come: Colgate, Villanova, and, of course Monmouth, the season opener on September 3rd.  And also, this preview of Penn.  Below the flip.
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Know Your 2016 Opponents: Yale

Today's "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series continues with the team that is predicted by College Sports Journal to finish 3th in the Ivy League: Yale.

Although it would have been a great narrative coup if Hilary Clinton and Bill Clinton met at the classic 14-12 upset of the Bulldogs by Harvard in 1970 at wind-swept Cambridge, they instead, the world learned this week, met in the spring of 1971 at the law school library.

One of the curious things about the Clintons is their lack of association with the "Yale-Harvard Football Game", as it's now known, even though Bill Clinton is a self-admitted sports nut, able to recall times when he congratulated winning teams that visited him in the White House, or times as President or at the Clinton Foundation reminiscing about Montana Grizzlies football.

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On Criminals And College Athletics

Where does it ever end?

That's the question I keep asking myself lately.

It seems to have added up for me from six months of lunacy, one where collegiate athletic departments have been caught up with such a large number of horrifying incidents.

There's serious allegations of rape by athletes at Baylor and Vanderbilt.  Louisville hiring prostitutes to lure in potential recruits.  The case of the Stanford swimmer who got off with a slap on the wrist after raping a young woman.  They are literally everywhere, with new twists and turns coming in so fast it's hard to keep up with it all.

Even past scandals involving college athletes don't seem to keep themselves out of the news lately, either.  The Penn State Jerry Sandusky story that never seems to die got a new lease on life when alleged abuses were revealed as far back as the 1970s.  The when-will-it-ever-end revelations of sham classes at North Carolina.  The continuous trickle of revelations at Miami (FL), where the latest is that football players got free use of luxury cars.

The most worrying thread that weaves itself through this collegiate offseason is the word "criminal" -- an offseason where criminals reveal themselves as students on college campuses, criminals that hang out with athletic departments, trying to get some of the fame, fortune and swag, and criminals reveal themselves in the management of collegiate athletics as well.

It's enough to depress any college football fan, and to rightfully make one think: Can it happen here?
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