Sunday, October 31, 2010

Day of the Living Dead

Columbia's first half was a horror show

Yale 31 Columbia 28

Why Yale Won

The Elis were extremely aggressive and poised right from the coin flip, forcing Columbia mistakes and turning them into quick scores. Eli QB Patrick Witt was extremely accurate early on, and the Yale defense dominated the line of scrimmage. It was 24-0 Bulldogs before the Lions showed any signs of life.

Why Columbia Lost

Columbia looked like Halloween zombies for most of the first half, allowing big runs, big kick returns, and wide open completions for scores. When the Lions finally started to rally late in the third quarter, it actually wasn't too late to turn it around, but a final drive to tie the game or win it fell flat still inside Columbia territory.

Key Turning Points

-Alex Thomas' easy 42-yard TD run to start the scoring exposed just how out of it the Lions were at the opening gun.

-With the score 24-7 and Columbia looking like it would at least stop the bleeding by halftime, the Lions fumbled a punt and gave the Elis a chance to score one more TD before the break. They did, and it was 31-7 at the half.

Columbia Positives

-Freshman LB Zach Olinger was a revelation with a game-high 10 tackles, including a sack and two other tackles for a loss. They were not light tackles either; he hits hard.

-Alex Gross had another strong game. He posted nine tackles, a sack and an interception.

-Adam Mehrer finally grabbed an interception, a beauty of a diving grab off a deflection, and recovered a fumble as well.

-Luke Eddy broke Larry Walsh's '84 27-year-old record for consecutive PAT's and now is 23-23 on the season. They're calling him "Eddy Money."

-I thought the Columbia running backs, Zack Kourouma and Leon Ivery, ran very hard. Both Kourouma and Ivery had plays where they refused to go down and got lots of bonus yards out of it.

Columbia Negatives

-The Lions did some things they had not done all season, most notably turn the ball over more times than an opponent, and had trouble covering kicks.

-Sean Brackett had a good second half and finished with four TD passes to put him at 16 for the year. But he also threw two INT's when he had just one for the entire season coming into this game. He also failed to reach a 50% completion rate.

Columbia MVP

Andrew Kennedy had a monster game, grabbing three TD passes and making sure the Lions at least had a chance in the fourth quarter. The senior TE edges out the frosh Olinger for the MVP nod. Kennedy now had seven TD receptions for the season and 456 receiving yards.


At Sun Oct 31, 10:38:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of the highlights of the game from Columbia's standpoint was the play of the freshman linebacker,Zach Olinger. He not only made some great stops, but his presence on the field in the second half enabled all of the Lion defenders to play that much better. Olinger certainly has to be a strong candidate for Ivy League Rookie of the Week.

At Sun Oct 31, 11:03:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wasn't able to see or hear the game, but Olinger sounds like he played great. He wasn't listed on the 2 deep game notes. Did he play from the start or did he come in later and why?

At Sun Oct 31, 11:22:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was there and saw Olinger. He was the best Columbia LB on the field. He played a lot from the beginning but may not have started. Excellent speed, which we don't have from our other backers. He may have gone in after our pathetic failure to stop the initial untouched 41 yard TD run by the Yale LB. He is only 200 pounds but plays fast. Sort of like Gross when he was a 200 pound rookie. That leads to a comment. I wonder about whether our weight training emphasizes gaining weight to the detriment of strength and speed. We have a lot of guys who have gotten much bigger but don't seem to have gotten stronger and certainly have not gotten faster.

At Sun Oct 31, 11:26:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

For what it's worth: last night, the USC center did his thing while the QB was looking toward the sideline for a play; fumble!

At Sun Oct 31, 11:36:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Gym Ratt said...

Yale only had 20 more yards offensively in the game but the big killer was the turnovers.

I agree that linebacker Zach Olinger and Craig Hamilton were the true bright spots in the game.

It's a shame we had to lose this one because it was a winnable game for the Lions.

I'll be in Cambridge next weekend and hopefully the Lions will play a complete game.

At Mon Nov 01, 12:40:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the game and have seen all of them this year. I saw the worst half Columbia has played in two years. However, I also saw the best half of football played by ANY Ivy this year, or in previous years. Yale is good both offensively and defensively, but we pounded them 21-0 in the second half. I am wondering whether the rebuilding of the program has turned a corner. Not an Ivy League championship corner. Anyone who has experienced rebuilding a program knows that doesn't happen until the program has been rebuilt. But, hopefully, the first half Saturday was the last of the old Columbia, and the second half against Yale, the first half of the new Columbia football program. This week will be the most important week of preparation since Coach Wilson arrived. Was the second half what this program has been aimed towards, and will it continue developing into a new era?

At Mon Nov 01, 12:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saw the comment on Gerst. What a waste of a great tailback. Not surpised there are still D1's hawking this kid...Got to wonder what the O coordinator is thinking.

55 Looks like a player

At Mon Nov 01, 03:29:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Harv@Dart; Winters at QB:
Mon, Nov 1 2:00 PM EDT NESN
Thu, Nov 4 7:00 PM EDT "
628 on Directv

At Mon Nov 01, 03:34:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said... far this season, only 16 points separates us from where we are today and a 6-1 team. Even Penn did not blow us out at Franklin. We need to and can win 2 of the final 3 games to get to a 500 record and position us legitimately for a title next year. Clearly we were nearing the corner this year but just not quite ready.

It seems that our offense should be OK if not slightly better next season. Though we lose Kennedy, we have good RBs and underclassmen receivers and O-line.

Kicking is now solid

Returns needs some work

So DEFENSE will be the project for this team.

I cannot help but believe our rising player and coaches will not be able to find those swing points, either through one extra defensive stop per game or a more consistent offense and time of possession.

Having lived through the years when the scores were 42-14 or 38-0 the other way every game, I try to keep things real as I look at this squad and take encouragement.

Chins up lion fans....stay behind this team as it will ultimately reward us!!!

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

another moral victory??

At Mon Nov 01, 06:55:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was a time when a moral victory for Columbia was coming within two touchdowns.

At Mon Nov 01, 07:00:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think that coach Wilson saw too many positives. Let's not read too much into the second half. Yale thought the game was over. Sure, we came back and showed some life and in fact could have stolen the win if Brackett had run a few more smart plays with 4 minutes to go, but the first hafd was just flat disgraceful. I am as loyal a Lion fan as there is, but I thought we just didn't show up. PS, our statting RT didn't play, and it showed.

At Mon Nov 01, 07:38:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger DOC said...

Despite a horrific 1st half this team didn't quit, they turned a blowout into a nail biter, and showed
the type of resiliency we haven't seem in years. Sure, they could've won, but the enthusiasm was there at the end. I like our chances for the upset next week...

At Mon Nov 01, 07:48:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our tight end, Andrew Kennedy, had a sensational game against Yale and wide receiver, Nico Guiterrez made a beautiful catch; however, the Lions once again got very little production from the other wide receivers. The freshman, Zach Olinger, gave a much-needed boost to the defense. Hopefully, there is another frosh who can do the same thing for the offense against Harvard.

At Mon Nov 01, 07:55:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the kicking game, I'm not sure it was noticed by many at the Yale game, but according to the game stats, freshman Luke Eddy made the last kickoff of the game and another freshman, Tyler Feely, made the final punt. As noted by one of the posters, the Lions' kicking game continue to improve their already strong overall kicking game.

At Mon Nov 01, 06:02:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Zach Olinger by far was the most valuable player. Why? They Blitz especially in the 2nd half and we covered better picking them off several times.

1st half turn overs killed us. 1st half not covering all receivers killed us. 2 steps and pass to a wide open (no one near him) receiver several times killed us. Poor kicking didn’t help also.

The smaller tackles on the DL were not effective throughout the game again (haven’t been effective since we stopped playing the smaller/slower OLs). If we weren't blitzing they would have had huge running holes among other things. The large line on those few times they were it (1 series 2nd half?) actually pushed back Yale’s OL and didn't leave wide open holes. The lighter faster method isn’t working for us anymore than it is working for Michigan this year. Harvard will dominate the line this week and run up the middle unless at least one of the bigger tackles is in all the time and we continue to blitz. Time be a little less arrogant about following course and make some changes.

Just as an example of DL conditioning look at Own Frasher when he played this year. Not in game shape which to a degree because of injuries is understandable, but, he is also obviously smaller than his 1st year and that has to make you wonder. Condition of major D1 teams works at stronger and faster. Major DL players all are approaching the 300lb mark. That is all muscle and speed. Makes you wonder if a new condoning program is needed and why Columbia seems to insist on their DL being in the 270lb range.

At Mon Nov 01, 10:49:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Regarding the kicking game,... Tyler Feely, made the final punt. As noted by one of the posters, the Lions' kicking game continue to improve their already strong overall kicking game."

Correction: Tyler Feely made the final two punts for a 48 yard punt average (long of 51). See official stats below:
Columbia Punting Statistics
Player Punts Avg Lng
Feely, Tyler 2 48.0 51

Guttas, Greg 4 39.2 47

TEAM 6 43.6 51

At Tue Nov 02, 12:45:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We lost this game because of poor kicking and punting. The PAT's were fine.

At Tue Nov 02, 01:37:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

what about the terrible kick-offs?

At Tue Nov 02, 02:35:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We lost this game because we came out flat and weren't ready to play. We were outcoached. They were ready and we were not. We have the talent but not the schemes or the preparation. They were hungry and out-toughed us. Despite all of that we still had a chance to steal the game at the end but didn't use our time outs properly and didn't have the right plays called when we had Yale reeling. Our offense is too predictable. We aren't useing Brackett properly by spreading the filed. Our OLs are lined up tight when they should be in a spread formation. Our new DC doesn't seem to have the right personnel. It took us six games to discovery that Olinger -- a freshman -- is our fastest and best LB? And what about our miserable kick return and punt return game? If we don't come out with fire in our bellies next Saturday then we will get hammered even worse. PS, what happened to our regular right tackle? I didn't see Ward on hte field on Saturday. And is Fraser out for the season?

At Tue Nov 02, 02:48:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"We lost this game because of poor kicking and punting"....Are you kidding me?

I watched this game and it was a wood shed beating in the first half. Pure and simple.

I agree with "poster" who said enough of the moral victories.

We want W's....and this team is more than capable of getting its fair share.

At Tue Nov 02, 07:38:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ward was injured in the Dartmouth Game. He only played 5 or 6 plays. Still out for Yale. Didn't suit up or travel.

At Tue Nov 02, 08:55:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Cu football and this blog but too many people aretoo optimistic. I have been reading about moral victories and wait till next year. I think as we need to focus on the next three weeks and try to show some progress, It seems like NW teams always get off to a good start and then collapse in the middle of the season. The next three games will make or brake the season, We need to go atleast 5 and 5 to show progress and right now we would be lucky to go 4 and 6 again and back down to 2 and 5 in the league. NW is 7 and 25 in the league that should not be acceptable to anyone on this blog.


Post a Comment

<< Home