Category Archives: Zach Bednarczyk

Know Your 2017 Opponents: Villanova

(Photo Credit: Akira Suwa/Philly.com)

Writing a season preview about Villanova used to be the easiest job in the world.

Just grab your boilerplate biographical information about future hall-of-fame head coach Andy Talley, do a little Googling of the Wildcat's next up-and-coming NFL prospects, come up with a dozen synonyms for the words "tough" and "challenge", and the preview basically writes itself.

But this season's task of facing Villanova is simply different than all of those other years.  Talley, the only coach Villanova has ever known since restarting their football program in 1985 after a failed attempt to pull the plug on it in 1981 in the middle of spring practice, has finally retired from the head coaching ranks.  While the same familiar trappings of high preseason rankings and potential NFL prospects remain, their new head coach, longtime Talley assistant Mark Ferrante, is now running the Wildcats and will be seeking his first win as a collegiate head football coach.

The three things that are certain is that the Wildcats are ranked No. 10 in the STATS FCS Top 25 Poll to start the year, that they're ranked No. 9 in the FCS Coaches' Poll, and that when they come and visit Murray Goodman Stadium on September 2nd at 12:30 PM, they'll be playing Lehigh in a battle between Top 25 teams.
Read more »

Lehigh At Villanova Game Breakdown And Fearless Prediction, 9/10/2016

Thanks to Villanova's game notes and Brian Ewart and the gang over at VUHoops.com, which is the source of most of this research (and, of course, my years of expertise following Lehigh football.)

One last plug of the Q&A Brian did over at VUHoops.com with me, and some other good content from their site.

Of note: VU Hoops: 3 Things To Know About Lehigh

"In the pre-season, Lehigh's offense was not only touted as high powered, but was generally considered the biggest strength of the team.  Last week they seemed to be sleep walking early on against the Monmouth.  In the first half, the offense was held to just 49 yards and no points.  Despite a decent showing by their defense, the Hawks went into halftime down 7-0.

"However, in the second half, senior QB Nick Shafnisky lead the team to 190 yards and 3 TD's.  It turned out to be too little too late, but they could easily ride that momentum into week 2.  Lehigh is a pass first team with lots of options at receiver and some talented tight ends, so Nova's secondary will need to be on top of their game Saturday.  They're no Pitt, but if the Mountain Hawks offense is clicking, Villanova's defense will have another tough test on their hands.


Read more »