Thursday, August 16, 2007

Thursday Quick Hits

The Lions head to Harvard in 16 days

The sole preseason scrimmage at Harvard on September 1st has been confirmed by Coach Wilson. I don't know the time, but it will probably be open to the public. I'll have an update on that as soon as possible, but sadly I will not be able to attend that game as of now. Anyone who does will have the podium here for his or her full report and you will be afforded every courtesy.

And we are also slated to have a four-game JV season this year, opponents and times are also TBA right now.

And I hate to dredge up the painful past, but a Virginia newspaper has a profile of new William and Mary defensive coordinator Bob Shoop today. Yes, he does talk about his time at Columbia. (A mixed "thanks" goes to Bruce Wood of the Big Green Alert for letting me know about that one.)

Also coming out of Virginia is a story I missed when it first made news two years ago, but Old Dominion University is on-track to revive its varsity football program for the first time since 1940. Their first season will be next year, but they're slated to face Cornell at Schoelkopf in 2009 and host them two years later in Norfolk.

Now I have a number of reasons to be interested in this story. First, my dad taught at ODU for four years when my family lived in Norfolk from 1977-81. I spent many hours wandering the campus buildings and the gym while waiting for my dad to finish work. This was when basketball great Nancy Lieberman was breaking records and putting ODU on the map, (and in an an ironic twist, we moved to Lieberman's home neighborhood of Far Rockaway, NY when we left Norfolk in 1981).

But also, the best part of the story is how an overwhelming amount of the ODU alumni said they would feel more connected to the school if it started football. This is not rocket science people: if you give alumni a place where they can gather together in large numbers 5-6 times per year, it will increase donations, increase school spirit, and increase just about everything that's good for a University. Meanwhile, we continue to hear from knuckleheads who want to abolish athletics at Ivy schools, etc.


At Thu Aug 16, 11:57:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Shoop quote is really unfortunate. To blame the players for lacking passion is really unworthy of the man. There was plenty of passion that first season, but where was the recruiting thereafter? He simply should have said that things didn't work out at Columbia. Period. What comes around in this world goes around. Don't blame the players for a lack of passion; it's a bum rap.

At Fri Aug 17, 12:01:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

And his use of the word "passion" was REALLY a bad choice. Perhaps a Freudian slip?

At Fri Aug 17, 05:25:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I recall, Shoop blamed his players for "quitting" on him at least twice during post-game press conferences. And his remarks in general usually indicated it was "their" fault, never that of him and his coaching staff. (Although it was clear he committed some big coaching boners, the team really did seem woefully under-coached some games.)

To be fair, however, he may simply not have had the media savvy to know what to say in a way that was neither accusatory nor utterly self-serving. The press wolves, such as they are (albeit in a small, non-Alpha type pack, this is Ivy football, after all) were very much out for Shoop at least his first two years. Still, he proved no sort of improvement on Ray Tellier in any real way. did he? And unlike Norries Wilson, he may not have ever had the proper attitude with which to ignore his many critics, or at least to charm them into submission.

At Fri Aug 17, 05:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Portraying Shoop as a family man and his quote comparing himself favorably to his Ivy League players are both unfortunate. Let's remember that he is a Yale graduate and knew exactly what he was getting into when he came to Columbia.

If Shoop can't be honest with himself about why he failed at Columbia and why he was let go, he's going to have a hard time making it back to a head coach position.

By the way, I didn't understand that comment comparing Shoop to Ray Telllier. Clearly Ray is the superior coach and person.

At Fri Aug 17, 07:36:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leonlion said...

Best to avoid Shoop Talk. On balance, Ray served CU well and continues to do so.

At Fri Aug 17, 10:31:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tellier was a fine coach for a while and seems a nice guy. But eventually his teams seemed to run out of gas (as someone else noted on this site). Why, I don't know. But they definitely did.

So he was replaced by a golden boy of a sort, someone who genuinely resembled those old "Arrow Collar Man" ads of the early 20th century. But also someone who made mistakes of his own and was probably badly prepared for the kind of professionalism that has finally come to Columbia Athletics (and to fundraising for it, it should be noted) via Dianne Murphy.

Perhaps Ray Tellier served/serves CU better. as leonlion says. Even so, Bob Shoop really shouldn't be cast as the black-hearted (and, worse, Yalie!) villain many apparently still consider him to be. (Does the surname "Garrett" ring any bells?)

At Fri Aug 17, 08:51:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ray Tellier was and is a fine man and a fine coach; he just didn't get the support he needed and ran out of gas. His last season, we had the lead in the fourth quarter in as I recall 7 games but couldn't hold on. Why? We just didn't have the depth and our guys were gassed at the end of most games. Ray is still with us and actually was instrumental in recruiting NW to caoch for us.

At Fri Aug 17, 09:12:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any word on whether the Harvard scrimmage includes other teams in addition to Harvard? Or, on the format, length of time, etc.?


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