Friday, November 23, 2007

Black Friday Shopping

Hurry up and grab that 350-pound lineman!

If there were a "doorbuster" sale for Columbia football, these are the things I would wake up at 3am to grab:

1) A Real Running Game

There were some positive signs this year with a couple of big games from Jordan Davis and some nice flashes from Ray Rangel, but the team actually averaged just about 63 yards rushing per game, DOWN from last year's already very low 67 yards a game. You could argue that it was a miracle that a team with rushing stats that weak challenged in any game let alone the 2-3 Ivy games Columbia took down to the wire.

We may already have our future in the bag, as Nico Papas is expected to join the team next year. And one would also hope that all the youngsters who got offensive line playing experience this past season will become more effective in 2008.

2) A Good New QB

Love him or hate him, (and I think most of us at least very much appreciated Craig Hormann), our senior QB is graduating and someone needs to step up and take the starting job.

Shane Kelly seemed to play pretty well in limited duty this year, and we keep hearing good things about Paul Havas, but the job seems like it will be wide open even after spring practice.

3) Defensive Linemen who Can Stop the Run

Not much to explain here. The Lions gave up a whopping 231 yards per game this season on the ground; about 170 fewer yards per game than they ran for on offense. Yikes!

4) More Fans

Columbia may have gone 1-9, but they played a lot of exciting games this past year. I'd love to see some more people show up next year and get into the spirit of things.


At Fri Nov 23, 10:50:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need to get stronger. Our OL may have wieghed as much as other OLs, likewise our down linemen, but I think we were out muscled at the line of scrimmage, and that hurt us more than anything. We had skill players, but we just were blown off the line of scrimmage in too many games.

At Fri Nov 23, 11:13:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We will be stronger....without a doubt!

At Sat Nov 24, 02:52:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said... in Boston, I read alot of great things about Papas. What i'm confused about(especially after seeing the Globe article last summer) is how he was given "a slot" at CU before his Senior year? This obviously happens at alot of bigtime program schools but how is he guaranteed admission before his senior year? Is he committed to the school contigent on maintaining certain grades his Senior year?

At Sat Nov 24, 03:00:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

M.A. seems to have dropped off the QB wish list? Sounds like he is a real threat when he carries the ball--are there plans to utilize him in a running back role or switch him to db? Just curious as there wasn't much said about him this year and hate to see a guy with so much promise not being used somewhere??

At Sat Nov 24, 03:25:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger DOC said...

I think the stat that says it all is that 67-231 discrepancy. Behind a better line and a more experienced Rangel I say we can close the gap and be way more competitive next year. I think there was way too much pressure on Hormann to make plays on third and and long. A more mobile QB might expand the playbook considerably as well.

At Sat Nov 24, 03:47:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Papas is no different than other highly rated recruits; they can and do get "likely" letters, followed by formal admission. In fact, H and Y have already lined up much of their incoming classes in this manner. Penn differs; Bags is also Dean of Admissions at Wharton.

At Sat Nov 24, 04:11:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ivy League rules allow admissions offices to issue so-called likely letters to athletes who are being asked to make formal commitments or sign letters of intent to other football programs so the athlete can decline the other offers knowing he likely has a place at the Ivy school.

Continued good academic performance is of course a condition for final acceptance.

These days recruits (in all sports) who have been identified early and who are ready to make a commitment to an Ivy school typically apply early decision or early action (except at Harvard and Princeton now). So Columbia and the other Ivies will have some recruits formally admitted on December 15. If Papas made a commitment to Columbia months ago, I would imagine that he is an ED applicant and his binding admission (because made under the early decision program) will be final soon.

I'd be interested in knowing how many football ED admits there will be this year. I think it's been a relative handful in the past. Jake, your mission is to uncover all of football's EDs this year.


At Sat Nov 24, 10:32:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In reply to Leonidas.
Contrary to most DI and DII schools, the 'likely letter', whether early admit or not, is NOT binding for the athlete. At other schools, the boys sign National Letters of Intent, which legally bind the athletes to honor their commitment. With the 'likely letter',unique to the Ivies,the athletes are not legally bound to honor their commit. However, the school is is sort of backwards to the National letter system, and is theoretically another disadvantage the Ivies have in keeping recruits and families honest to the school they commit to. While it would be morally bankrupt, we knew that legally our son could have accepted another likely letter or signed a National Letter with another program, even after receiving Columbias letter. It is an honor system only...

At Sat Nov 24, 01:21:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wasn't sure if you were saying I had said likely letters were binding on the student-athlete. Agreed that they are not strictly binding on either party.

I was noting that an early decision acceptance was binding. Of course a student could walk away from an ED admit, but that is very very rare and the ED school won't take it lying down. They will write and call the second school and attempt to have them withdraw their offer of admission as contrary to the agreement the student made when he applied ED to the first school. The second school may or may not honor the request, but I wouldn't recommend walking away from an ED admit.


At Mon Nov 26, 07:36:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

BEST 1st Advice - do your homework and become self informed regarding the difference between the "National Letter of Intent" (IVY is not a member) and IVY's "Likely Letter". Copy/paste the following links for accurate information: and


Be sure to pay special attention to the following for IVY. Otherwise, statements may be made to your recruit that are completely inaccurate and misleading:

" * Admissions Offices at each Ivy school may offer some athletic and other candidates a "likely" letter, which has the effect of a formal letter of admission provided the candidate continues to have a satisfactory secondary school experience. Coaches may initiate the requests for these letters, but only the office of admission can issue a"likely" letter.
* A coach may both inquire about a candidate's level of commitment to an Ivy institution, or interest in attending that Ivy institution, and encourage that interest. However, a candidate may not be required to withdraw, or not make, other applications, or to refrain from visiting another institution, as a condition for receiving a "likely" letter or for a coach’s support in the admissions process. "

At Mon Nov 26, 11:03:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Poster above, dont expect these guys to understand that. They actually think their team is good.

At Tue Nov 27, 12:16:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't get the last poster.

At Tue Nov 27, 02:49:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger dabull said...

You're not listening lamebrain. Did we say they're good or that we think they are on track to become good. Obviously at l-9 we are not good, but we feel we are finally making positive steps towards that goal.

At Tue Nov 27, 04:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lamebrain?! I hope that comment wasn't meant for me. Character assassination is the first sign that you are losing an arguement. Luckily, your administration continues to embarrass the school more than the football team does. Maybe Ahmadinejad could send you a couple recruits so you guys at Columbia can continue to support terrorist causes all over the world.

At Tue Nov 27, 05:01:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

smells like Penn

At Tue Nov 27, 06:16:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Incorrect spelling is the first sign that maybe Columbia dinged you bitter boy?. Honestly, throwing rocks at the CU football program is the best use of your time? That's pretty weak.


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