2016 Expectations…

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This topic contains 20 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by wilsonfootball2 wilsonfootball2 1 year, 1 month ago.

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  • #26937
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Participant

    I’ve seen Lehigh picked either 3rd or 4th in league in the preseason magazines. Everything, as it should be, seems predicated on the defense. Lehigh’s reputation on offense is very good when you look at some of the outsiders write-ups. Unfortunately, the disaster that has been the defense is equally recognized. It would be damn shame if the season once again flames out because the defense sucks.

    The schedule is very tricky. All things considered, Lehigh has one of the toughest all FCS non conference schedules I’ve seen. There is not a cupcake in the bunch, not even close. The league schedule on the other hand sets up quite nicely.

    I think anywhere from 7-4 to 9-2 is reasonable. Another 6-5 season without significant injuries would be a pretty big disappointment. It’s time to return to the playoffs!

    #26941
    LUHawker
    LUHawker
    Participant

    I agree Owl. I think LU has a chance to be a bigger surprise than most others.

    My best guess is an 8-3 record with the three losses being:

    Villanova
    Yale
    Fordham

    Lehigh’s defense definitely improved towards the end of the season in the sense that it was more consistent. I hope that trend continues. The rationale for my selection of the 3 losses is VU is a solid team and the CAA is still a step ahead of the PL. Losses to Yale and Fordham reflect the fact that we struggle to stop the run and Yale has bulldozed us a couple years in a row and we still have no answer for Chase Edmonds at Fordham. I think we defeat Colgate at home this year and exact some revenge on Princeton. Penn doesn’t have the defense to stop our O. HC is a bit of a wildcard, but it is a 1-trick offensive pony and I still see us winning because Lehigh O would win in a shoot-out scenario.

    I could see a 3-way tie for the PL, and even if we aren’t the auto-bid, an 8-3 record would get us into the playoffs IMO.

    #26942
    van
    van
    Participant

    until I see some real D, I see at least 4 loses, Nova, Rams, Yale, and either Princeton or Monmouth

    #26948
    LUHawker
    LUHawker
    Participant

    until I see some real D, I see at least 4 loses, Nova, Rams, Yale, and either Princeton or Monmouth

    Well, I guess differing by 1 game is not so far off even with the questions on defense.

    #26949
    RichH
    RichH
    Participant

    Being really bold I’ll agree with everybody :)
    O s/b outstanding. Need a TE and an OG. Players must forget the press clippings from last year and do it again.
    D?? Have hopes and expectations. Good and sky is the limit. Average 7-4,8-3 seem likely. Bad again? A winning season ala Hank perhaps.

    #26951

    lu90
    Participant

    Lehigh’s defense definitely improved towards the end of the season in the sense that it was more consistent.

    The last 3 games were:
    38 points to Holy Cross
    49 to Colgate
    35 to Lafayette (one of THE worst offenses in all of FCS)

    There is nothing to base any expectation for improvement on defense this year. We gave up 49+ points on 4 separate occasions last year and our DC somehow kept his job. Didn’t think it was possible but I thought the defense actually regressed from 2014. It’s really a shame because the offense could be very good, but unfortunately based on Coen’s inability to properly staff this team, 7-4 or 6-5 is inevitable. No league championship and no playoffs.

    #26952
    LUHawker
    LUHawker
    Participant

    Lehigh’s defense definitely improved towards the end of the season in the sense that it was more consistent.

    The last 3 games were:
    38 points to Holy Cross
    49 to Colgate
    35 to Lafayette (one of THE worst offenses in all of FCS)

    There is nothing to base any expectation for improvement on defense this year. We gave up 49+ points on 4 separate occasions last year and our DC somehow kept his job. Didn’t think it was possible but I thought the defense actually regressed from 2014. It’s really a shame because the offense could be very good, but unfortunately based on Coen’s inability to properly staff this team, 7-4 or 6-5 is inevitable. No league championship and no playoffs.

    Well, the facts don’t lie regarding points surrendered. It was my impression that the D had shown more consistency – maybe not. Nonetheless, I’m more optimistic for this season than for last.

    #26953
    RichH
    RichH
    Participant

    Improved? Probably did a bit over last 3. A very slender thread to hand a better D on but it is something. Gate ate us alive. Very good O but wecwere atrocious. Cross and Pards, we didvplay well when games werecon the line
    Before we start building castles in the sky, we must remember how truly terrible we were last year. On the season the only real unit imprvement I saw was the fact that we had strtches even whole halves whent the D was actually good. A feat we never accomplished the prior two years D scheme new to every body. 2nd year? Hell they should at least know their assignments. Equally relevant, g8ot to remember the injuries at S,Rov and DL at NT and DE. Hell we had a 175 lb Rover for the PL schedule. Game but he was blown out on runs to his side.
    I believecwe have size,speed and athleticism in the 2 deep. Key ingredient is confidence.

    #26957
    sundayamqb
    sundayamqb
    Participant

    There should be no losses in the league. Barring key injuries, if a Lehigh team cannot win the PL with a three-year starting senior QB and its depth on offense, there’s a problem in Bethlehem.

    I just hope the D improves dramatically. I know of no DCs (or many HCs) who can survive giving up 33 ppg and 450-475 ypg two years in a row (I think he’s entering year 3 this go-around). HC apparently trusts DC to deliver — a year after some on this board thought one or more coaches should go.

    Where we came from on D:
    2013: 31 ppg, 436 ypg
    2012: 21, 354
    2011: 20, 314
    2010: 19, 345

    If D plays like 2012, there should be a nice playoff run.

    #26958
    RichH
    RichH
    Participant

    Lots of returning.senior QBs next yr

    #26962
    wilsonfootball2
    wilsonfootball2
    Participant

    Being really bold I’ll agree with everybody :)
    O s/b outstanding. Need a TE and an OG. Players must forget the press clippings from last year and do it again.
    D?? Have hopes and expectations. Good and sky is the limit. Average 7-4,8-3 seem likely. Bad again? A winning season ala Hank perhaps.

    I guess we will se if Puhl and contribute in his first year as one of the TEs.

    Maybe we put so many points on the board that no one can catch us. That wishful thinking is all it is wishful.

    #26985
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Participant

    The only real saving grace for Lehigh’s defense is that Fordham’s was equally as bad last season. Colgate and Holy Cross’s were at best marginally better. One of the blogs that rated FCS conferences by strength noted the numerous teams with poor defense in the Patriot League as a reason the league is still a step behind.

    The one thing that Lehigh has going for it is an increased in size and depth along the DL. They are physically much bigger than they were in 2013 and 2014. Hopefully someone emerges as the next Chagani this year….

    #26989

    lfnadmin
    Keymaster

    Not comparing us to perennial FCS playoff contenders or anything, but I find it silly to downgrade the Patriot League thanks to its defenses. Eastern Washington and Northern Arizona had defenses last season that gave up more points per game than Lehigh, yet somehow the Big Sky is seen as a “power conference”.

    I’d frame this argument as: Lehigh’s defense needs to be better because the Patriot League features some pretty powerful offenses. If you can’t slow down Colgate’s and Fordham’s running games, you won’t win the league. Period.

    #26995
    RichH
    RichH
    Participant

    First to a D gets the prize. Agree with your perspective. On paper, all but Hoyas return QBs and O skill positiond. A daunting prospect for everyone.Pards may reap some benefit from their injury plagued season.

    #26997
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Go Lehigh TU Owl
    Participant

    Not comparing us to perennial FCS playoff contenders or anything, but I find it silly to downgrade the Patriot League thanks to its defenses. Eastern Washington and Northern Arizona had defenses last season that gave up more points per game than Lehigh, yet somehow the Big Sky is seen as a “power conference”.

    I’d frame this argument as: Lehigh’s defense needs to be better because the Patriot League features some pretty powerful offenses. If you can’t slow down Colgate’s and Fordham’s running games, you won’t win the league. Period.

    Villanova, Bucknell and Chattanooga did a good job shutting down Fordham’s offense. Those were the 3 best defenses the Rams played and it clearly showed.

    Colgate’s offense was not a machine week in and week out either. They struggled a bit against better defenses.

    The PL is definitely home to legit offensive talent but there’s not doubt the defenses are weak imo….

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