Friday, September 21, 2007

Columbia-Marist: Keys to the Game

Columbia gets back to the Lions Den for the first time in 43 weeks (CREDIT: Columbia Athletics/Ben Shyman)

Key #1: Shaking off the Rust

Columbia can't let last week's loss, the extreme heat, (they're predicting 81 degrees and humid tomorrow), a possibly small crowd or anything else to temper their enthusiasm. The team must be fired up and ready to play; intimidating Marist with their pregame rituals alone.

Key #2: Controlling the line of scrimmage

Columbia can't get pushed around by an undersized team like Marist. The defense needs to be in the Red Foxes' backfield early and often and the offensive line must create big holes for running backs to plow through. Columbia hasn't had a running back with a 100 yard game performance in 14 games, (James Cobb '07 did it against Yale in 2005, but remember that was mostly on the heels of just one big 70+ yard run).

Key #3: Take an early lead and hold it

Any early Marist score could send some of the players and coaches heading for a virtual panic button. That means no missed tackles and no breakdowns if the Red Foxes get off a long pass or a big return.

Key #4: Sacks, Picks, and Fumbles

With Marist's light offensive line the defense needs to harass Red Fox QB Steve McGrath all day. The result needs to be lots of sacks and some interceptions. Columbia did not get a takeaway last week and takeaways were the hallmark of the 2006 season.


At Fri Sep 21, 09:43:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake, in the six games I saw last year and the Fordham game this season, I never once sensed that Norries and his staff were even close to pushing the "panic button." So I think that usage by you was just a bit too much.

As for it being predicted to be in the 80's and sunny tomorrow, as best I recall it was even hotter when training camp began. So this one is simply a red herring.

We will play and we will do our best tomorrow. As will, presumably, the Red Foxes. All else is just idle persiflage come the opening kickoff.



Post a Comment

<< Home