Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Harvard Football Year-End Updates

Although Harvard’s season ended in November with a second consecutive come-from-behind victory over Yale, December has contained a number of newsworthy notes for the Crimson. Here’s a round-up of the end-year and offseason highlights:

  • Harvard came into the first game of the 137th season of Crimson football having lost junior starting Quarterback Collier Winters to a preseason injury. Injuries would be a storyline throughout the season for Harvard, as a number of other players—including key wide receivers Chris Lorditch and Marco Ianuzzi and backup quarterback Andrew Hatch—would miss time. Nonetheless, the Crimson finished the year with a 7-3 mark, including a 2nd-place 5-2 record in Ivy League play. Victories came against Holy Cross, Lafayette, Dartmouth, Cornell, Columbia, Princeton, and Yale, while Harvard dropped contests against Brown, Penn, and Lehigh. With the 2010 season, Harvard becomes the only Ivy League team ever to amass a stretch of 7 consecutive 7+ win seasons.
  • Perhaps the highlight of the year was Harvard’s come-from-behind victory against Yale. Down 14-7 at the half, the Crimson never looked back after Marco Ianuzzi’s 84-yard kickoff return for a touchdown at the start of the 3rd quarter. The Crimson would go on to defeat the Bulldogs for the fourth consecutive time, 28-21. The graduating class of 2011 became the fifth in school history to go undefeated against the Yale Bulldogs.
  • Senior runningback Gino Gordon was the 2010 co-recipient of the Asa S. Bushnell Cup Award. Gordon shared the honor for Ivy League Football Player of the Year with Dartmouth sophomore tailback Nick Schweiger. Gordon and Schweiger both had outstanding seasons on the ground, amassing 1,059 yards and 1,133 yards respectively. Gino Gordon, who is originally from Bonito, California, now sits at fourth among Crimson career rushers with 2,643 yards, and is first in career yards per carry, with 5.3. He is now the fifth Harvard player in the last ten years to be named as Player of the Year, and sixth all time in Crimson history.
  • Senior Wide Receiver Zar Zavala became the sixth athlete in the history of the Harvard football program to be selected for a Rhodes Scholarship. One of four Harvard students to receive the prestigious award this year, Zavala learned of the selection committee’s decision via text message after coming off of the field at the end of The Game. Speaking in the post-game press conference, the Texas native deadpanned that November 20th was probably “the best day of my life.” A joint Engineering Sciences and Neurobiology concentrator, Zavala is one of only two walk-ons that will graduate with the Class of 2011. Zavala was also awarded a Marshall Scholarship, which he will turn down to pursue the Rhodes.
  • Runningback Gino Gordon, Safety Collin Zych, and Junior Defensive Tackle Josue Ortiz were named by the New England Football Writers’ Association to the All-New England Team. Gordon, Zych, and Ortiz were also tabbed as Harvard’s representatives on the All Ivy League first team. Zych and Ortiz joined Princeton WR Trey Peacock and Dartmouth return man Shawn Abuhoff as the league’s only four unanimous selections. Zych—in addition to serving as the 137th Captain of the Crimson—finished the season tied for the team lead in tackles, with 79. Ortiz, meanwhile, led the Crimson with 7.5 sacks for 59 total yards, and was third on the team with 54 tackles overall.
  • Rounding out the All-Ivy League second team for the Crimson were OL Chris LeRoy, OL Brent Osborn, OL Kevin Murphy, RB Treavor Scales, DL Chuks Obi, LB Alex Gedeon, LB Nick Hasselberg, and DB Matt Hanson. TE’s Nicolai Schwarzkopf and Kyle Juszczyk received honorable mentions.
  • Seniors Zar Zavala and Collin Zych were two of ten Harvard athletes recognized as members of the Academic All-Ivy League Team.
  • Among intrasquad honors, Gino Gordon received the Frederick Greeley Crocker Team MVP Award at the year-end banquet.
  • Also at the year-end banquet, rising senior linebacker Alex Gedeon was named the 138th Captain of the Harvard Football Team. Gedeon, who hails from Hudson, Ohio, was fourth on the squad with 49 tackles in 2010, including 5 for a loss. The future captain was also called upon in 2010 to handle some duties as a punter after freshman Jacob Dombrowski suffered an injury in a minor car accident, booting 8 punts for an average of 34.6 yards.
  • Finally—and most importantly—rising senior Alex Sarkisian will serve as co-host for WHRB’s venerable halftime production, Kicking a Touchdown, during the 2011 season. Sarkisian, a wide receiver, will replace graduating senior Nick Hasselberg, who anchored the show for 2010. Charlie Hobbs, WHRB’s color commentator during the 2010 campaign, will serve as co-host with Sarkisian, in the stead of WHRB’s Kara Hollis, who will be graduating in May.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Twas the Night before Sportsmas...

The Fifth Day of Sportsmas

What: Harvard men's basketball vs. Boston University
Where: Lavietes Pavilion
When: Saturday, December 11th @ 2pm (coverage begins at 1:45)
Who: Scott Reed and James Yoon
Coverage: 95.3FM in the Greater Boston Area (those not in the metro area that have in their heart the true meaning of Sportsmas can log on to whrb.org to listen)

And now, here's that WHRB original classic, The Night Before Sportsmas

Twas the night before Sportsmas, and all through the school,
not a sports team was stirring, not even men's crew.
The radios were placed, on their desktops with care,
In hopes that WHRB's coverage, soon would be there.

The students were nestled, all snug in their beds,
while visions of Crimson danced in their heads.
Before going to sleep, I and my buddy,
Had just settled down for a long winters study.

When out on the Yard there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the desk to see what was the matter.
I jumped up after hearing the noise coming at us,
Hoping it was the hockey team returning from practice.

Away to the window I flew like a dart,
Pushing aside Harvard pennants and art.
The moon reflecting in the dead of winter
Made the yard glow like inside the Bright Center,
When, what by my wondering eyes should be caught,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny mascots,

With a little old driver, a jolly good charmer,
I knew in a moment it must be John Harvard.
More rapid than track stars his mascots they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

"Now, Tiger! Now, Bulldog! Now, Big Green and Lion!
On, Quaker! On Brown Bear! On, Big Red and Crimson!
To the end of the ice! to the end of the court!
Now play away! play away! play each in sport!

As a point guard jumps up for a rim shattering slam,
Or a goaltender who gets his team out of a jam
So up to the dorm-top the mascots they flew,
With the sleigh full of radios, and John Harvard too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard 'bove the roofbeam,
The skating and dribbling of each Ivy League team,
As I put on my Crimson hat, and was turning around,
Down the chimney John Harvard came with a bound.
He was really quite large, a great big old mass,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ice shavings and grass;
A bundle of radios he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes -- pure Crimson! his dimples how small!
His cheeks were like pucks, his nose like a ball!
His droll little mouth had a smile a bit loony,
And the beard of his chin was as white as home unis,
The stump of a pipe he held was immense,
And the smoke it encircled his head like good defense,
He was in a great mood, not at all mopey,
Because in his bag sat an Ivy league Trophy,
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old man,
And it seemed his entrance was all part of his plan;
A wink and a point to his championship rings
Soon let me know that he could do great things.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And tuned all the radios, then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to the teams gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, as he drove out of sight,

"Happy Sportsmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

Till next year...Merry Sportsmas!

Only Two More Shopping Days Left...

The Fourth Day of Sportsmas

What: Harvard women's basketball vs. New Hampshire
Where: Lavietes Pavillion, Allston, MA
When: Tonight, 7pm (Coverage beginning at 6:45pm)
Who: Matt Patton and Charlie Hobbs
Coverage: 95.3 FM in the Greater Boston Area, and WHRB.org everywhere that Sportsmas is celebrated (ie-everywhere).

Hermey didn't want to be an elf...he wanted to grow up and be a sportscaster so he could bring Sportsmas to the masses.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sportsmas Time is Here

The Third Day of Sportsmas:

What: Harvard women's hockey at New Hampshire
When: 7pm tonight (Coverage begins at 6:45pm)
Where: Whittemore Center, Durham, NH
Who: Brendan Roche (play by play) and Lachlan Macintosh (color commentary)
Coverage: 95.3 FM in the Greater Boston Area, WHRB.org anywhere in the world

 pictured above: our transportation to the Whittemore Center in Durham

(with apologies to Gene Autry, Johnnie Marks and thanks to Scott Reed for letting me steal the mascot names/idea out of "Twas the Night Before Sportsmas")

You know Tiger and Bulldog and Big Green and Lion,
Quaker and Brown Bear and Big Red and Crimson,
But do you recall, the most famous mascot of all?

Johnnie the Crimson-nosed mascot (mascot)
Had a very shiny nose (like a spot light)
And if you ever saw him (saw him)
You would even say it glows (like a goal lamp!)

All of the other mascots (mascots)
Used to laugh and call him names (like a "SIEVE!")
They never let poor Johnnie (Johnnie)
Join in any Ivy League games (like ice hockey)

Then one foggy Sportmas eve
John Harvard came to say:
Johnnie with your nose so bright (like the Center)
Won't you guide my zamboni tonight?

Then how the mascots loved him (loved him)
As they shouted out with glee (like on TV)
Johnnie the crimson-nosed mascot
We'll tune in to W-H-R-B!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Have a Holly, Jolly Sportsmas...

The Second Day of Sportsmas

What: Harvard men's hockey vs. Quinnipiac
When: 7pm tonight (Coverage begins at 6:45pm)
Where: Bright Center, Allston, MA
Who: Brendan Roche (play by play) and Raafi Alidina (color commentary)
Coverage: Tune in at 95.3 FM in the Greater Boston area or at WHRB.org from anywhere in the world.

Presenting: How Handsome Dan Stole Sportsmas

Intro: Every Cantab in Cambridge loved Sportsmas a lot, but Handsome Dan, who lived south of Cambridge, did not. Handsome Dan hated Sportsmas, the whole Sportsmas season. Now please don't ask why; no one knows of the reason. It could be, perhaps, that his left paw was lame. Or it could be because his team always lost in The Game. But I think that the most likely reason of all may have been that his heart was two sizes too small.

[It's Sportsmas morning and Handsome Dan has just stolen all the radios from Cambridge]

Handsome Dan: (awaiting the silence) That's a noise...
Narrator: Said Handsome Dan
Handsome Dan: That I simply must hear.
Narrator: So he paused - and Handsome Dan put a paw to his ear. And he did hear a sound rising over the snow. It started in low... then it started to grow. He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then Handsome Dan thought of something he hadn't before! Maybe Sportsmas, he thought, isn't about the final score. Maybe Sportsmas... perhaps... means a little bit more! 
And what happened then? Well, in Cambridge they say that Handsome Dan's small heart grew three sizes that day. And then - the true meaning of Sportsmas burst out of its seam, and Handsome Dan found the strength of the Harvard sports teams!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Merry Sportsmas!

The First Day of Sportsmas

What: Harvard Men's Basketball vs. Worcester Polytechnic Institute
When: 7pm tonight (coverage begins at 6:45)
Where: Lavietes Pavilion
Coverage: WHRB 95.3FM in Greater Boston area (or on the web at whrb.org)

(Its Sportsmas morning. Ebenezer Scrooge awakes from dream and runs to window)

Scrooge (to passerby): You there! What day is it?

Boy: Why, sir, its Sportsmas!

Scrooge: Sportsmas! God Bless you lad!

Boy: God Bless you sir!

(Scrooge runs to his room, turns on radio, tunes it to 95.3FM WHRB)

Merry Sportsmas everybody!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Announcing the Five Days of Sportsmas

Final exam time at Harvard can be a stressful time for Harvard students, particularly those students who host a regular radio show on WHRB. In order to maintain quality air during this period but also give the student staff a chance to study for exams, WHRB has what is known as its Orgy season. An Orgy, a trademarked term of WHRB, is a block of programming (sometimes an expansion of WHRB's traditional programming) that takes up a large block of time- this can be anywhere from four hours to days worth of music all organized around a certain theme.

WHRB Sports is no exception to the Orgy period schedule. In the past, we've traditionally presented an extended edition of Crimson Sportstalk centered around a sporting event- last year, it was the men's and women's basketball doubleheader. When looking at the schedule, we recognized a new opportunity, a chance to broadcast five straight days of Sports. Thus, the Five Days of Sportsmas Orgy was born, as WHRB will bring you around 16 hours of Harvard Sports coverage like no one else can.

It all starts Tuesday night, December 7th at Lavietes Pavilion, when the Harvard Crimson take on Division III outfit WPI at 7pm. The rest of Sportsmas will feature men's and women's hockey and men's and women's basketball broadcasts as well. The full schedule is in the sidebar to the right as well as below the jump. We're still working on the final details but expect interviews with coaches, players and national figures both during and immediately after our broadcasts. We're looking forward to our most ambitious schedule in our tenure at WHRB Sports and we hope you are too. Thanks for listening and have a MERRY SPORTSMAS!