Friday, September 16, 2011

Ivy League Football Weekend Preview

It has been 42 long weeks, but the anticipation and excitement at WHRB couldn’t be higher as the 56th season of Ivy League Football begins this weekend. All teams will begin their schedules with nonconference matchups, hoping to get off to a quick start and build momentum before league play. There is an amazing slate of games to jumpstart the season, including four night games. Here is a quick look:

Georgetown at Yale, Noon

Undefeated Georgetown (2-0) comes knocking at the Yale Bowl in time for the 139th season of Yale Football. Bulldog QB Patrick Witt returns for his final season, commanding a much-improve offense with potent WRs Gio Christodoulou and Chris Smith. On the defense, Coach Tom Williams will be looking to unleash DB monster Geoff Dunham to pressure the Hoyas. However, Georgetown QB Isiah Kempf is no pushover, and comes off an emotional come-from-behind victory over Lafayette

Predictions: 32-21 Georgetown

Columbia at Fordham, 1 pm

The Lions visit Jack Coffey Field for the Liberty Cup, and Junior QB Sean Brackett is poised lead his team to victory. Brackett was a one-man offensive powerhouse for Columbia last year as he lead the team in rushing and passing, and this year will prove to be no different. However, tandem TBs Jr Nick Gerst and Sophomore Marcorus Garrett will bring a much-improved backfield to a team bereft of a backfield.

Predictions: 28-14 Columbia

Harvard at Holy Cross, 1 pm

Harvard begins its quest for the Ivy League title against the cross-town rivals Holy Cross Crusaders. QB Collier Winters is back from an injury-plagued season and with him are familiar faces: Trevor Scales, Chris Lorditch, Matt Brown, and Kyle Juszczyck. This is complemented by an all-star defense that includes Josue Ortiz and Matt Hanson. Look for a balanced offense to lead Harvard to an easy victory.

Predictions: 21-3 Harvard

Colgate at Dartmouth, 1:30 pm

WHRB’s perennial sleeper pick is once again ready to prove that the Ivy League is not a two-man show. Co-MVP RB Nick Schwieger comes off a 1,133 yard rushing season while Conner Kempe marches toward the Big Green record books in passing, already 6th in team history with 3,333 passing yards. This is the last chance for head coach Buddy Teevans to take his mature, experienced team to an Ivy League title

Prediction: 23-21 Dartmouth

Brown at Stony Brook, 6 pm

The Bears shocked the Ivy League with a gritty win over a sloppy Crimson team and managed to finish 2nd in the league last year. Monster of a man Kyle Newhall-Caballero returns after being sidelined after two games and will hope to re-establish his presence as a premier QB in the Ivy League. WR Alex Tounkara-Kone and Jimmy Saros will be potent weapons enough for Brown to squeeze out a victory.

Predictions: 14-7 Brown

Bucknell at Cornell, 6 pm

Coach Kent Austin will start his second year with an anticipated homecoming game against BUcknell at Schoellkopf Field. Although picked to finish 7th, the Big Red returns 22 starters to gain bragging rights at the annual Battle of the ‘Nells. At the focal point of this team is Jeff Matthews, who was a true freshman QB who started all games for Cornell en route to an Ivy League Rookie of the Year award.

Predictions: 32-12 Bucknell

Lafayette at Penn, 6 pm

There is no doubting that Penn sits alone at the top of the Ivy League rankings after two straight titles. Its defense is unmatched in the nation, and the team owns the longest active winning streak in the nation (FCS). One concern is the offensive line, which only returns 1 starter, although all five earned All-Ivy last year. No doubt, the Quakers will again be the team to beat in the Ivy League.

Prediction: 32-7 Penn

Lehigh at Princeton, 6 pm

Senior LB Steven Cody and DL Caraun Reid will be returning from injuries that limited them for 9 games last year to bring much-needed leadership for the Tigers. QB Tommy Wornham, a very capable signal caller, also returns since week 5 of last season to hopefully bring stability and production. Alas, Lehigh has scored more than 40 points in each of its game this year…

Prediction: 42-14 Lehigh

Let's play some football!

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