Come Home Lions!
That Championship Season: The '61 Lions wouldn't mind some company at the top (CREDIT: Columbia Athletics)
Dartmouth Big Green at Columbia Lions
October 23, 2010
Location: Robert K. Kraft Field at Wien Stadium on the Baker Athletic Complex, West 218th Street and Broadway, New York, NY.
Kickoff Time: 1:30pm
Gametime Weather Forecast: Sunny and 65 degrees
The Spread: Columbia is favored by 8 ½ points
Columbia Game Notes
Dartmouth Game Notes
HOW TO GET TO THE GAME: Jake’s Special Homecoming Edition!
By Subway: Take the Uptown A train to the final stop at 207th Street. Exit from the 211th Street exit and walk up to 218th Street. Or take the Uptown #1 Train to the 215th Street stop and walk the three blocks to 218th Street. (*Note, the #1 train will be running this Saturday ONLY).
By Car: Do whatever you can to avoid the Cross Bronx Expressway. But ALSO avoid the tie ups at Broadway north of Dyckman that are also a result of the subway construction. If you choose the parking garages along 10th Avenue, I would get under the tracks as soon as you can on 10th and pull into the first garage you see within 10 blocks of the stadium.
By Commuter Rail: Take the Metro North train from Grand Central to the Marble Hill stop and walk back over the Broadway Bridge to the stadium.
These two teams have been locked in each other’s rear view mirrors for the last 10 years.
Columbia comes into the game after a tough loss to Penn, but still seems to have the best squad at this point in the season in more than a decade.
The Lions are 3-2 and have the best quarterback in the league in Sean Brackett. Add that to the fact that the weather forecast is perfect and you have the makings of a great crowd for Saturday.
Columbia hasn’t won a Homecoming game in 10 years, the longest such streak in program history, and is hungry to perform as well as possible on the bigger stage. That last Homecoming win was in 2000, 49-21 against, of course, Dartmouth.
Speaking of Homecoming, the Lions were the Big Green’s Homecoming victims last year in a terrible rain storm in Hanover. Dartmouth came into that game 0-5 and riding a 17 game losing streak, but rolled past an injury-plagued Columbia team by a 28-6 score.
The star of that game, Dartmouth RB Nick Schwieger, rushed for 242 yards on the day. He is just a junior now and leading the league in rushing. Another star of the contest, Big Green DE Charles Bay, is back to about 100% after starting the 2010 season with injuries.
Dartmouth’s last road win in an Ivy League game came at Wien Stadium in 2006 in a 20-7 game. That game was marked by the debut of M.A. Olawale, who came into the game in the second half to play QB.
So it’s the Ivy’s best QB vs. the best RB. Two up-and-coming teams with a lot to prove. All with a big crowd for Homecoming as a backdrop.
Keys to the Game
It’s obvious the Lions can’t let Schwieger put up another 242 yard day. They don’t have to hold him under 50 yards to win, but keeping him out of the end zone is important. That and stopping him enough times to force Dartmouth to go to plan B on offense is a key to the game for Columbia.
Adjust to the Quick Release
Conner Kempe’s best talent is getting rid of the football quickly. The entire Lion defense needs to work together to take that away from him. The pressure needs to bear down on him faster, the linebackers need to jam the receivers on the line, and the secondary needs to cut off the sideline passes.
Attack the Pass Defense
The Big Green has had trouble against the pass, and the fact that freshman A.J. Dettorre is starting at one corner position this year doesn’t figure to be a big help. Brackett and company need to spread the field and make the secondary work hard all day. The long passing game in particular may be a good weapon to use early and often.
Restart the Run
The best way to keep Schwieger from getting 30+ carries and running all over the Lions could be to run the ball so well that Columbia dominates the time of possession from the get go. This is one of those games where you take the ball first if you win the toss and try to dictate the tempo for the entire game.
Avoid the Block
The Dartmouth special teams are blocking kicks all over the place this season. Columbia PK Luke Eddy has great elevation on his kicks and he has to keep it up. Punter Greg Guttas needs to be ready for the extra pressure.
The Homecoming ticket challenge is STILL ON! You can still buy your tickets now and have them waiting for at Will Call. DO IT!!!
On the day new members were inducted to the Columbia Athletics Hall of Fame,, it would be great to see some possible future members make their mark on the field!
LET ME SEE AND HEAR YOU AT THE GAME!!!