Prime Aerial Targets
The Ivy League football class of 2010 was jam-packed with some of the best wide receivers of this generation.
It included young men like Columbia’s Austin Knowlin, Brown’s Buddy Farnham and Bobby Sewall, Cornell’s Bryan Walters, and Harvard’s Matt Luft.
So who’s coming back for 2010?
Most of the eight Ivy teams are facing a real changing of the guard in their receiving corps. By that, I mean they will have to replace more than just one impact player at the position. The teams in that category are Brown, Columbia, and Cornell.
Then there are teams like Penn and Yale. The Quakers and Elis aren’t losing too many bodies at the WR position, but they didn’t have good enough passing numbers in 2009 to worry too much about who’s coming back anyway. Nevertheless, Penn does lose its #1 receiver from last year as does Yale, but Yale’s top receiver last year was actually a tight end.
So the race for the title of “best returning Ivy wide receiver for 2010” will come from the ranks of Harvard, Princeton or Dartmouth.
That’s because those three teams all return well-stocked crews of experienced receivers for 2010.
The Crimson lose the very talented Luft, but their top receiver from last year is back in Chris Lorditch. Harvard also has an underrated weapon in junior Adam Chrisis, but it’s Lorditch who had the most yards receiving of any returning WR last year at 545. He also grabbed five TD’s.
Princeton has the luxury of returning its top two receivers from 2009 in Trey Peacock and Andrew Kerr. But it’s Peacock who is the top tiger after grabbing 48 passes in 2009 for 527 yards and three TD’s. Columbia fans will also remember the damage Peacock did to the Lions in 2008, when he got open deep for some key receptions in the heartbreaking Homecoming loss.
Dartmouth has three returning receivers Ivy fans need to watch closely coming into the season. Tanner Scott and Michael Reilly both finished among the top 10 receivers in 2009, making the Big Green the only team other than Brown that could make that boast.
Scott is a great story as he is an walk-on to the squad who has made the most of his opportunity. But I think Reilly is the better of the two and his stats through just 8 games played last season bear that out. Reilly finished with 498 yards receiving and four TD’s. Had he played all ten games, he was on a pace to gain well over 600 yards.
Dartmouth also hopes to bring back former All Ivy honoree WR Tim McManus, who missed 2009 with an injury. If he’s healthy, he deserves more than a mention in this discussion. He’s a very powerful athlete and competitor.
So here’s how I would rank the top three returning receivers for 2010:
1. Chris Lorditch, Harvard
2. Trey Peacock, Princeton
3. Michael Reilly, Dartmouth
Honorable mentions go to McManus, Cornell’s Shane Savage, Columbia’s Mike Stephens, and Yale’s Jordan Forney.
Tomorrow: Tight Ends.
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