"D" is for Dominant
Columbia 37 Fordham 7
The Norries Wilson era got off to a great start today as the Columbia Lions took advantage of a slew of Fordham mistakes, and created some of their own in a 37-7 crushing of the Rams.
I'll have much more on this game in the coming days, but here are the headlines:
The Defense was Superb
Columbia's "D" played fired up ball for 60 minutes, forcing turnovers, confusing the quarterback, and most importantly, STOPPING THE RUN. Fordham's star runner James Prydatko had just 47 yards on 20 carries with a long run of just eight yards.
There were too many great individual efforts to mention in this quick piece, but sophomore Drew Quinn and senior tri-captain Adam Brekke seemed like they made big plays on every series.
The Lions also produced two defensive touchdowns, doing what the offense couldn't do until well into the second half; put the ball in the end zone.
The 3-5-3 looks like a winner, as the Columbia defenders not only shifted a lot before each snap, but they shifted fast and aggressively. Kudos to defensive coordinator Lou Ferrari for getting these guys ready to play and seeing to it that they dominated the line of scrimmage despite giving up a lot in size to the Fordham offensive line.
The Offense has Some Work to Do
QB Craig Hormann and the offensive troops looked a little sluggish for the first two and a half quarters, but they finished strong enough to preserve the blowout.
The running game was not spectacular, but it made a difference when it counted. Starting tailback Jordan Davisrushed 18 times for a respectable 61 yards, and backup James Cobb made his short time on the field count with 39 yards on three carries, including a nice 22-yard scamper for a touchdown.
Another star was freshman Austin Knowlin, who caught a 62-yard touchdown pass from Hormann and made another tough clutch catch later in the game.
Rocholl was no Fluke, and these Special Teams Really are Special
Fordham could have avoided paying the price for its many early mistakes if it had not been for the sure leg of Columbia sophomore John Rocholl. When the Lion's offense had trouble moving the ball after Ram turnovers, Rocholl made sure Columbia got at least three points out of it every time. Rocholl made all three of his field goal attempts, the longest of them was 42 yards.
Meanwhile, Columbia blocked both of Fordham's field goal attempts with fantastic rushes from the outside. We'll have to wait for the official game notes to find out who got the blocks, but the Lions were impressively aggressive.
BOTH Columbia blocks were made by cornerback Eugene Edwards, a junior. Congrats to him!
Wilson Wins the First
Norries Wilson becomes the first Columbia football head coach to win his opening game since Aldo "Buff" Donelli did it in 1957 with a 23-20 win over Brown. Now Wilson will try to match the legendary Lou Little by trying to become the first CU coach since the hall-of-famer to go 2-0 his first time out. Incidentally, Little started his career at 3-0 in his first season, 1930... each victory was by shutout!