Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Class of 2014: The Legacies, Part One

Loyola Academy in Wilmete, IL

About half of the incoming freshman now listed on the Columbia roster come from already established feeder schools to Columbia football.

You can check my feeder list here, it is now updated from 1969-2010 with a few other earlier years trickling in.

Here's a look at what I'll call the high school "legacy" players from the class of 2014:

WR Joey Andrada: Piedmont HS (Piedmont, CA)

Andrada is just the second documented Piedmont HS product to come to play football at Columbia. And he could be the first to make a real impact. 12 years ago, linebacker Jason DeBonis '02 came to Morningside Heights. He was the captain of his Piedmont team and the son of Brooklyn native Joe DeBonis '71, who was a solid varsity player at tight end for the Lions. But Jason did not stick with the team past freshman year.

DB Marquel Carter: Culver City HS (Culver City, CA)

Carter is also just the second documented Culver player to come to the Lions. And he's also in a position to be the first to make a real mark. The last Culver grad to join Columbia was Chris Johnson '99, who like Carter came in as a defensive back. Johnson did not stay with the team after freshman year.

P Paul Delaney: Loyola Academy (Wilmette, IL)

The punter Delaney will have a tougher job setting himself apart from the four other Loyola grads who have come to Columbia beginning with Matt Engels '89. The greatest Loyola alum to play for the Lions is of course, linebacker Des Werthman '93. Fellow linebacker Joe Cook '01 was also a real star. And I have high expectations for current sophomore Alec Kosminskas.

C Duncan Dickerson: Cypress Falls HS (Cypress Falls, TX)

The successful recruiting of center and long-snapping specialist Dickerson means Columbia will continue the tradition of having at least one Cypress Falls grad on the roster every year since 2003. Of course, that's because the other two Cypress Falls alums have been brothers Adam Brekke '07 and David Brekke '10. Adam was a major star for the Lions, playing on the varsity all four years and serving as a captain in 2006.

DB Mike DiTommaso: Seton Hall Prep (West Orange, NJ)

Seton Hall Prep is one of those schools that I KNOW I'll find more Columbia football alums came from as I get more data. But for now, I know of four other Seton Hall grads led by one of the great stars of the great Lions teams of the 1940's, Jack Nork '49. Much more recently, defensive tackle Michael McAndrew ‘06 was a very hard-working player for Columbia who battled all four years on that defensive line.

K/P Luke Eddy: Worcester Academy (Worcester, MA)

Worcester surely has sent more players to Columbia than the eight I've documented so far. But Eddy will be the first Worcester player since Jeff Klemp '92, a tackle who never played after his freshman season of 1988.

K/P Tyler Feely: Jesuit HS (Tampa, FL)

Feely is the first Jesuit alum to come to play for Columbia football in eight years and the fourth player overall. The most notable Jesuit grad was Chuck Leonard '02, who switched from defensive line to tight end but never made an impact in his years on the varsity because of injuries.

RB Marcorus Garrett: Pope HS (Marietta, GA)

Garrett is the third documented Pope grad to come to the Lions and the first since Ed Salter '09. Salter was a very talented offensive lineman, but injuries really marred his three years with the varsity. Before Salter, WR Jim Besselman '07 played for the Lions. He was never a starter but made some catches in his four years.

WR Bruce Grant: Fordham Prep (Bronx, NY)

Seven other documented Fordham Prep grads have played Columbia football, but Grant is the first since Ashley Hernandez '90 came way back in 1986. Mario Biaggi '80 was the last great Lion from Fordham Prep. Biaggi was a terror on the defensive line and the original Columbia sack master.

Tomorrow, I'll look at the other seven "legacy players" and what they might have to live up to.


Also tomorrow is the latest chance you have to support Columbia athletics by shopping at Fairway. This time, the event is at the Fairway in Pelham Manor, NY.

Don't miss it!


At Wed Jun 09, 11:24:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jessica said...

Great information! Hmmm, Anthony Villamagna ('13) went to Cypress Woods, which opened his high school freshman year, taking kids from Cypress Falls. And in Duncan Dickerson's freshman year, Cypress Falls was rezoned to take kids from Langham Creek where Pete Janda ('07) went. One little Houston suburb has supplied five players in the last decade. Looking at your feeder list, there are a lot of schools from the greater Houston area. Why do you think that is?

At Wed Jun 09, 07:21:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many thanks to the fan who posted the newsreel of the Columbia victory over Yale in 1934, featuring Al Barabas' 75-yard TD run (re-posted here). It was amazing to see the Eli fans attack the exultant Lion rooters as they pulled down the goalposts at the Yale Bowl. And a capacity crowd, even in the rain! Those were the days!!'2010-06-08%252001:16:57'%257D

At Wed Jun 09, 11:41:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...


Whenever a geographical area pops up as a feeding ground for Ivy sports, it means there's either been a shift in the educational quality of the schools in that area, or the Ivy recruiters have just learned about that quality.

The thing that trips up potential recruits to the Ivies is academics more than anything else. So these schools in Houston are probably top notch.


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