Scouting Sacred Heart
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Paul Gorham has made some good adjustments this year
We hear the words "class warfare" a lot lately.
There's a general notion being pushed on America that the rich must be rich because they cheated, or they stole, or are just plain not fair.
That stupid notion, (and it IS stupid, we've NEVER had more SELF-MADE millionaires in American history), is usually followed by a push for more taxes on the wealthy or some other thought on how to punish them for the evil of success.
What does this have to do with Columbia football?
Well, there may be some football players who know some Columbia students who will actually be going down to those "Occupy Wall Street" protests today... you know, the three-and-a-half-week-long demonstration that blames greedy Wall Street for all of our economic problems? That's the one.
***TIME OUT FOR A MEMO TO ANY COLUMBIA STUDENT PLANNING ON ATTENDING THE WALL STREET PROTESTS***
When your parents are paying or taking out a loan in their own name for you to go to an expensive school like Columbia-- which is the case for 90%+ of you -- it's ludicrous for you to be protesting about the economy... or almost anything else. You're not "protesting, you're having a "tantrum."
Anyway, the real message here is that in life and in football we shouldn't be looking to PUNISH the successful, we should be looking to EMULATE it!
And that's what Columbia should be hoping to do as it looks at Sacred Heart.
The Pioneers began the season 0-2 and looked totally inept on offense.
But since then, Sacred Heart has righted its ship mostly due to two solid games by its starting QB, one fantastic game by a RB, and some very opportunistic play by the defense.
In short, it's been a team effort.
The QB I'm talking about is Tim Little, a red shirt sophomore from Egg Harbor Township, NJ.
SHU's turnaround can almost directly be attributed to the coaches' decision to give Little the starting job in week 2.
I say "almost directly" because he had a bit a rough beginning against Bryant in week two.
But against Dartmouth in Sacred Heart's first win, Little completed 65% of his passes.
And last week at Central Connecticut, he threw three TD passes and no interceptions.
Another big weapon is Keshaudas Spence, a bruising 5-10, 230 pound freshman back who burned the Big Green for 129 yards and two TD's. Even though Spence had a very rough game against CCSU the following week, you can bet the Pioneers will be using him early and often to test the sometimes shaky Lion tackling.
On defense, Sacred Heart has started to excel at the "bend but don't break" approach.
The most dangerous Pioneer is senior DL Justin Embler who has an impressive 10 tackles for a loss in just the four Sacred Heart games.
Linebacker Chris Mandas has 35 total tackles, seven of them for a loss.
WR's Rich Rossi and Greg Moore are the playmakers in the passing game.
The man engineering this in-season turnaround at SHU is Head Coach Paul Gorham.
And while this is the first-ever meeting between the Lions and the Pioneers, this won't the first time Gorham has worked the opponent sideline at Wien Stadium.
From 1994 through 1998, Gorham was an assistant coach at Brown University. From '94 to '97 he was the offensive line coach and in 1998 he was the offensive coordinator.
Those were some wild years in the Bear-Lion rivalry.
There was the 1994 game a Wien, where the Lions blew a 27-10 THIRD QUARTER lead and lost by an incredible 59-27 score.
There was the 1996 game at Wien, where both schools went back and forth up and down the field before a pass deflection in the end zone sealed a 31-27 Columbia win.
And then was the 1998 game where Brown and Gorham came into New York with one of the most high-scoring offenses in Ivy League history and it turned out to be a defensive struggle. Brown won, 10-3 after Columbia failed to score on a 4th and goal with just seconds remaining.
Gorham is a protege of former Brown Head Coach Mark Whipple, who is now the QB's coach for the Cleveland Browns.
But for all of Gorham's talents, the biggest reason for SHU's two consecutive wins has been he fact that the opposing teams were sloppier when it came to penalties, (Dartmouth), and turnovers, (CCSU).
A discipline Columbia team can definitely win this game.
Columbia Game Notes
The CU game notes are now publised on the athletic department website.
I don't see any major changes in the two-deep, but if I missed something, please let me know.
Coach Kelton's Progress
Former Lion defensive coordinator Aaron Kelton continues to do great things as head coach up at D-III Williams College.
But now he's a curator of a local museum!
Well, for a while anyway.
After an undefeated season last year, Kelton and the Ephs are 1-1 so far in 2011.