Just to add more emphasis to the point about how nothing matters more than winning, I thought I’d look at the people who have won Bushnell Cups while playing for teams that didn’t have winning records.
Of the 42 men who have won or shared the IVY MVP award, only five didn’t play for winning teams.
1974 Walt Snickenberger (RB, Princeton) (1-5)
1975 Doug Jackson (RB, Columbia) (2-5)
1982 John Witkowski (QB, Columbia) (3-11)
1983 Derrick Harmon (B, Cornell) (4-11) *(team had a 3-3-1 Ivy record)
1996 Chad Levitt (RB, Cornell) (5-23) *(team had a winning Ivy record)
Note that the last two of the five, Harmon and Levitt, actually played on Cornell teams that did not have losing Ivy records.
If you take those two out, you see that players on losing teams have about a 7% chance of winning the Bushnell Cup.
More importantly, teams with losing records have a 100% chance of not winning championships.
I agree with the posters who say we should set defined benchmarks for the football team to reach as soon as possible.
Here are my top three in ASCENDING ORDER of importance:
1) Beat Penn and/or Harvard within the Next Two Years
Basing a major goal on defeating just one or two teams can sometimes be foolish because the dominant teams you need to defeat in your league are often a moving target.
Not so much in the Ivies.
Since 1997, the league has been dominated by Harvard and Penn and since 1997, Columbia has a grand total of zero wins over Penn and two wins over Harvard.
It’s hard to believe the Lions will have turned a corner until they can beat the Quakers or the Crimson.
2) A Winning Season NEXT Year
Two straight 4-6 seasons show that Columbia is tantalizingly close to finally posting a winning season for the first time since 1996.
This streak HAS to end now.
Anything else for 2011 has to be considered a failure.
3) Win an Ivy Title by the end of the Decade, AND Do it BEFORE Cornell and Princeton
For the sake of argument, let’s just say Columbia has some kind of unknown disadvantage that gives teams with equal talent a real edge over the Lions.
Whatever that edge may be, Columbia is currently well ahead of Princeton and Cornell in the talent department.
And that means if either one of those teams gets a winning record or a championship before the Lions do, we somehow dropped the ball big time.
So not only must Columbia make this decade the one where it finally ends its championship draught, it must also not allow Cornell and Princeton to come from behind and grab the lead again over the Lions just like Dartmouth has in just two years.
These goals are very simple to understand and not one of them is impossible.
Don’t think so?
Consider these three facts:
-Princeton was 2-8 in 2003 and beat Harvard AND Penn just three years later on its way to an Ivy title in 2006
-Dartmouth was 0-10 in 2008 and posted a winning season THIS year
-Brown was 0-10 in 1992 and was an Ivy co-champion by 1999