Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Owen Fraser made a big impressive on the Ivy voters (CREDIT: Columbia Athletics)

Drew Quinn and Owen Fraser both made the Ivy League football honor roll today after their fine performances on defense for the Lions yesterday. Fraser is a freshman and now becomes a candidate to be the third straight Columbia player to win Ivy League Rookie of the year.

Perhaps the most impressive win for any Ivy team this week was Brown's 17-7 win over Stony Brook. No one expected much from the Bears defense this season, but it was the defense that smothered Stony Brook for the win. Junior defensive end James Davelin had a monster game for Brown which could ride this stronger-than-expected defensive line to the top of the standings. Davelin was named Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week.

But the big test comes at home this Saturday against Harvard. The Crimson had to come back to beat Holy Cross at Harvard Stadium Friday night, but Holy Cross is a good team. Senior QB Chris Pizzotti was 30 for 44 for 370 yards and a TD pass! He won Ivy Offensive Player of the Week.

Dartmouth's long-standing problems at placekicker since the graduation of Tyler Lavin seem to be over. Freshman kicker Foley Schmidt did a great job hitting two field goals and went 2-2 on PAT's for the Big Green. He was named Ivy Rookie of the Week.

In Case You Were Wondering...

I suspect a lot of Columbia fans will be wondering a bit about our upcoming opponent Towson and just what to expect.

Towson is 1-3 with all their losses on the road, including one against D-I bowl contender Navy and another against FCS playoff power Richmond. The most recent loss to Coastal Carolina was perhaps the toughest, as the Chanticleers, (yes that is Coastal's nickname, easily one of the weirdest in college football), held them to three points. Coastal comes from the mixed bag FCS Big South division, but they play Penn State earlier this season, (they fell 66-10).

Towson's best weapons will be QB Sean Schaefer. Going into this weekend's game, he was averaging 262 yards passing per game and had a nice 65.4% completion percentage. Junior David Newsom is his main target, usually for short plays. The long threat is junior Casey Cegles, who was averaging more than 20 yards per catch.

Towson's running attack may be the weakest Columbia will face all season. After four games, the Tigers have just 161 net yards rushing for the whole season. On the other side of the ball, Towson has allowed more than 300 yards rushing in almost every game, including another 302 last week against Coastal.

Why Towson? Well, Columbia does owe the Tigers a couple of games after hosting them at Wien Stadium in 1997 and 1999, (both Lion victories). Towson was considering joining the Patriot League back then, but decided to go to the CAA instead, which has since split into North and South divisions. Towson has not challenged the leaders in their South division as of yet.

But this is a long road trip for the Lions into unfamiliar territory. Unlike the Iona and Marist games in 2006 and 2007, this game will be much tougher.


At Tue Sep 23, 05:22:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

didn't we play the Chanticleers in the NCAA baseball tourney?

At Tue Sep 23, 05:25:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Columbia's defense plays the rest of the season like it did against Fordham I believe the Lions will do very well in the Ivy League. Of course, Columbia needs to get some more points from its offense which means less running plays into the middle on first down. Why didn't the Lions throw the ball more in the second half against Fordham? Austin Knowlin, Taylor Joseph, Mike Stephens and Andrew Kennedy are all talented receivers. Pyles also looks like a very good athlete.

At Tue Sep 23, 09:23:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that we tightened up on offense once we took the lead. Our offense depends upon stretching the field. Knowlin and Kennedy seem to be our best receivers. Kennedy can run crossing patterns.

At Tue Sep 23, 09:31:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake, what happened to Musgrove? I didn't see him on the field. What about Gross? Will he be back on Saturday? And Gutierrez? what do you think about putting MA in the backfield?

At Tue Sep 23, 09:36:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Musgrove did not play. Gross got back into the game at the end. Gutierrez was in khakis along with Bashaw. Obviously, I don't know when they'll be back.

At Tue Sep 23, 09:53:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our failure to establish a running game to the outside and to throw the ball downfield hurt us in the second half against Fordham. Jordan Davis is a good, strong running back, who can get you decent yardage inside, but we also need a speedy running back who can turn the corner for big gains. Obviously, Xavier Martin was the difference in the Fordham game. Putting a speedy runner in the backfield with Davis will prevent the defense from keying on him inside.


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