Sunday, October 09, 2011


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Columbia failed at its chance at repentance on Yom Kippur

Sacred Heart 34 Columbia 25

Why Sacred Heart Won

The Pioneers played a virtually mistake free game, and the most mistake free Pioneer was QB Tim Little who completed 33 of 48 passes for 371 yards, three TD's and no interceptions.

After Sacred Heart started slow offensively, the team turned on the jets late in the first half and never looked back.

On defense, the Pioneers made Columbia work for everything. The D allowed the Lions to score four TD's, but never let Columbia control the clock or the tempo for long.

Why Columbia Lost

The Lion defense had no answers for Sacred Heart's steady diet of screens, short crossing patterns, and every other kind of pass play. After briefly harrassing the Pioneer QB in the first half, Columbia could not match the Pioneer offensive adjustements.

The defense continued to miss tackles and had no answer for the Sacred Heart short pass and run offensive attack.

Columbia's special teams was a disaster; failing on three PAT's, kicking off way too short, and getting a punt blocked.

The Lions were penalized only five times, but most of the flags badly burned them at crucial moments.

Key Turning Points

-After Columbia took a 13-6 lead with just under 2:00 left in the half, an extremely short kickoff, decent return, and CU penalty set the Pioneers up with the ball at the CU 41. Sacred Heart needed just over a minute to score a TD and tie the score at the half.

-Once again, the Lions came out dazed and confused in the third quarter. After a three-and-out to start the second half by Columbia, Sacred Heart put together a three play drive for one score and then a seven play drive for another TD. Just like that, it was 27-13 SHU.

-Trailing by 27-19 late in the third quarter, the Lions stopped Sacred Heart on a 4th and one at the Columbia 48 and had a golden opportunity to score. But a holding penalty in the middle of a brilliant Brackett run killed the drive and Lions ended up having to punt.

Columbia Positives

-QB Sean Brackett seemed more himself, running the ball well, throwing two TD passes and having his first INT free game of 2011. But he still finished with a sub-.500 completion percentage and missed some open receivers.

-LB Josh Martin was all over the field with two sacks, a pass breakup, and nine tackles overall.

-TE Hamilton Garner continued to impress with two TD catches. He may not be as fast as former Lion great Andrew Kennedy, but he is running some of the same routes and really has a nose for the end zone.

-Freshman Alec Fisher looked very good returning punts and kicks.

Columbia Negatives

-Three failed PAT's.

-Tons of missed tackles and very little short pass defense.

-Terrible penalties at terrible times in the game.

-Disastrous results on kickoffs.

-Still nothing imaginative from the coaches. The lineup is the same, the play calling was the same, and no tricks.

What We've Learned

Columbia is now 0-4 and has lost 10 of the last 11 games stretching back to last year.

The team and the program, despite deep and varied talent, is clearly several steps back from where it was that late November day in 2009 when the Lions thoroughly beat a very good Brown team in the season finale.

Columbia football needs regime change, and it needs it now.


At Sun Oct 09, 09:10:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Judging by the other Ivy scores today, the only teams against whom we might have a chance are Cornell and Dartmouth......I said a chance.

Penn trounced Fordham, so don't hope for any miracles next week (they will score 5 TDs against this defense and we might get 2 or 3, but there can be little hope)

Harvard, Brown and Yale rolled, though Cornell played Harvard tough. Three more losses there.

Dartmouth failed to score a point against Yale, lost to SH and are 1-3, 0-2. They might be more underperforming versus preseason expectations than we are (if that's possible!)

I still care about and support this team and its players. But you don't go from having a good kicking game last year to having NO kicking game unless the players have not been prepared by the coaches.

Today, we scored enough points to win, but the Punt squad had one blocked that led to 7 points, the kick off squad had short kick after short kick that let to at least one more TD and the PAT squad left three points on the field. Had they all been performing at last year's level, we win this game by 28-24. or 28-17.

It's that simple. It's that basic. It's that ugly

At Sun Oct 09, 09:16:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great point! I really feel bad for the players

At Sun Oct 09, 09:21:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its amazing to watch all the Columbia fans rant and rave on this forum and another about how great Columbia was going to be in 2011. All you heard was talent, depth, more talent. OMG, we got a transfer from A&M and his dad played in the NFL. He will dominate in the Ivies. Hello, he was a walk on and is barely even playing. You have a QB who had a decent year last year and now he will lead you to the promised land and is the best in the Ivy. Really? Kid is a nice athlete and tough competitor but best QB in the IVY. Hardly. 4th or 5th best is more like it. Your offensive line if freakin huge. How can they be sooo bad? Obviously size doesnt win many games. Defensively, giving up 370 to a freshman who had 189 as his biggest day previously. Just wait til you get to the Ivy heavyweights. Its gonna be a long season.

At Sun Oct 09, 09:24:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This team and individually are regressing. Even our standouts from last year have taken several steps backwards. This situation is toxic for the players and the program

At Sun Oct 09, 09:27:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^^Bad ass!

At Sun Oct 09, 09:28:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This team and individually are regressing. Even our standouts from last year have taken several steps backwards. This situation is toxic for the players and the program

At Sun Oct 09, 10:06:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

3rd poster is right but so are the ones above and below him.

This was never going to be a top-tier Ivy team -- not in 2010, nor 2011 -- but today's output was embarrassing.

At Sun Oct 09, 10:20:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Bob L said...

Several coaching blunders made winning almost impossible. With less than 5 minutes left in the first half and 4th and two at the SH 31 the coaches elected to punt the ball instead of going for it or trying a field goal. The punt goes into the end zone and SH gets the ball at the 20- an eleven yard difference. With 1:46 left in the first half after Columbia scores a touchdown, the coaches order a squib kick which is returned to the SH 44- face mask puts the ball on the Columbia 41- SH ties the game up before half time.
The special teams were terrible- two PATs missed, one blocked, a punt blocked.
Josh Martin played a fantastic game- was all over the field.
Don't know if the game was winnable- I think it might have been- but the coaching sure didn't help matters.

At Sun Oct 09, 10:24:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was at he game today nd saw it all. Very ugly! The previous post-er is right. Our line is huge, but soft and porous. Our D-line is short and slow. Where is Childress? Brackett may not even be the 5th best QB. Very good runner and tough kid! One thing is for sure, our coaching staff is the worst in the league! At this rate, we may finish ninth in the league (yes, I know that here are only 8 teams in h league!)

At Sun Oct 09, 10:50:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

why would you take a player out who has the most tackles on the team

At Sun Oct 09, 12:46:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

After four consecutive weeks of terrible tackling, the coaches need to acknowledge the fact that some of the players do want to tackle. That will not change next week or the week after. Put players on the field who will do the first thing required of a defensive player...tackle.

At Sun Oct 09, 05:31:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

to the goddamn fur'ner on this're a guest here and should behave as such. If we CU fans go through seismic cycles of hope and gloom, that's our right and (sadly) our tradition. Don't know who you are or what school you attended, but you do not go into someone else's home an insult them or kick them when they are down.

GTF out of here.

...,with respect

At Sun Oct 09, 05:42:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having a lame duck coach does nobody any good. Have Bill fix his mistake so that we can move on!

At Sun Oct 09, 05:48:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luke Eddy misses one PAT all year in 2010 (28/29 or something like that). How does that go to three misses in one game? New center? New holder? Bad coaching?

I just think this Coaching staff has lost its imagination and its ability to get these players working together They are out of answers. It's time to go.

At Sun Oct 09, 06:37:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why we lost AGAIN
late in the 3rd quarter we gave the ball to Gertz who ran for 6yards on first down. Bracket ran the ball next for 15 yards but we were holding and the ball was moved back to the SH 42yard line. After two incomplete passes we punt into the endzone (net 22yards). As the 4th quarter begins we allow SH to go 11 plays for 80 yards and a TD.
Stat line:
Gertz has 4 ( count'em FOUR)carries for a total of 30 yards. (average of 7.5 yards)
Garret has 9 carries for 30 yards. ( you do the math)
Jake, I agree completely with your reference to the Brown Game when I was convinced that we had a rising program.

At Sun Oct 09, 07:04:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ray Tellier would have been at least 3 and 1 with these kids.

At Sun Oct 09, 08:26:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eddy is clearly having a sophomore slump. He needs to fix his issues as he is a better kicker then his stats this season. Shouldn't miss 3 in a career let alone a game.

At Sun Oct 09, 09:51:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, no Lame Duck coach, just get rid of him at the end of the year! Injuries are part of the game, so no excuses about that. If the players (and back-ups) were better prepared, they wouldn't look that lost!

What about getting Coach Toal on board next year (Don Bosco #1 rated HS team in the country). He'd be a pipeline to all of NJ football.

Hope to see the Hot Dog Committee (AKA Football Committee) at HC this weekend. Would love to hear something, anything, from those guys. Since the Hot Dog Committee are not part of the solution, they are part of the problem! Hey guys, stand up to Diane and Bill! We would all respect you more.

Disgruntled Lion
P.s. The is a special on buns at Cosco this weekend!

At Sun Oct 09, 10:06:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The crude language must stop! This is NOT a Penn Blog for goodness sakes! :0) Kidding! Seriously though, we are supposed to be above such crass responses. Jake, you need to do a better job filtering here. I respect you, and enjoy this blog tremendously, but some of this is over the top. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, so please just keep it clean and intellectually insightful.


At Sun Oct 09, 10:14:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As the weeks go by, it is harder and harder to read the comments of this blog. So depressing! If the fans/alumni have lost their energy, can you imagine what it's like for the players? These coaches have got to find a way to get these boys back. They are fading fast. It's a psych out game for them. The psychological impact on these players has now trickled down to the most obvious player..the kicker. Bottom line: if the energy is lost, they will not win. Unfortunately the energy is gone. So sad for all these boys that came to Columbia with a passion for the game of football! Come on coaches, you have the power to help them get it back.

At Mon Oct 10, 12:05:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Frustrating to read some of the comments. There are some players tacking. Maybe those should be acknowledged and left in. As in one of the previous comments why would you take the top tackler in the ivies and on the team out and let everyone else in. Having trouble understanding

Luke Eddy obviously is in a funk but that doesn't make him a bad kicker. Had a bad game.

At Mon Oct 10, 12:57:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Give Luke Eddy a pass. We didn't lose by 3. Also, he has a good resume, so no big deal.

Very simple what we need on defense... More Nick Misterias. This Kid's motor simply does not stop. It was a pleasure watching him play yesterday. Thank you!

At Mon Oct 10, 01:23:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

By any defensive statistic: time of possesion,3 and outs,forced punts, yards per snap, number of yards per play, and sacks, this defense is weak. Every long drive by an opponent puts our offense at a huge disadvantage. Even a 50/50 split in the # of plays would result in our offense having many more chances to score.

At Mon Oct 10, 04:22:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

... it's clear the overall tone of the posts on this blog are becoming increasingly negative .... frustration on our part .... we finally see what on paper looks like a talented Columbia team .... hence, losing (and not looking good doing it) heightens our sense of frustration which is playing out in the blog .... there is a lot most of us don't know .... who is hurt, why certain players are being played and others are not being played or not being played enough .... Saturday the offense looked significantly improved over past games ... you can't blame this one on the OC .... the defense didn't improve .... good game plan on offense, Scared Heart's defense was not tough, Scared Heart played a error free offensive game, players on defense are hurt or injured ??? .... everyone knows the tackling this year has been poor, I don't think anyone has a clue as to why ... I still believe that a couple of kids on each side of the ball need to step up and push their teammates .... it may sound corny, but with all this negativeity flying around them, the kids need to hunker down and adopt an "us against the world mentality" ... if someone gets blown off the line, kick his butt .... if an offensive lineman gets a penalty, yell at him ... despite our feeling about a 0-10 record, think how the kids will feel .... let's all try to be more positive, the coaching staff's status will take of itself .... right now we need to see intensity out of this team .... excitement when they do good .... accountable to each other .....

I have been dying to see a turnaround of the program for 40 years .... Penn did it, Brown did it .... it's our turn .... we need to start now .... we HAVE to do it ...

Frank F '70C

At Mon Oct 10, 05:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good for you Frank. The "positives" I got from the game were from walking around the athletic complex. Diane and her team have done a FANTASTIC job making it look so fan friendly and professional. Ray Tellier was out there shaking hands and diffusing the negative comments about Norries' staff and the team's record. Don't play poker though Ray, you’d lose your house. In addition, her staff was EXCELLENT throughout the game. Programs are free, the staff was friendly, engaging, optimistic, and encouraged by everything around them. Okay, so they may have been drinking too much of the Kool-Aid, but they were all positive! I've recently seen to a few other Ivy contests and the CU staff should win an award! Some people may think that this is trivial, but a great deal of hard work goes in to making everything seem so easy. No, I am not a member of the staff, or an employee of the University, just an alum. I had my children at last week's game and it was a very positive experience. Next week is HC, and Diane’s staff ALWAYS does a good job there. Please stop and thank them. I did, and so should you! Not everything is wrong with this athletic program.

I realize to most of you that my comments above of small consequence. Yes, we would all like more wins! The unfortunate reality is that we may only win two games (if we are lucky). I encourage you to go to the games, support the kids (and the staff that makes the event so special), and relax.

I only disagree with the last post who commented that things will work themselves out with Norries. If that were the case, he would have been gone last year. To some extent, the voices outside of Bill Campbell must be heard. As much as I compliment Diane above, her management of Norries is her Achilles heel and will tarnish her accomplishments if action is not taken swiftly. She should be rounding up names of possible replacements as we speak.

At Mon Oct 10, 06:59:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's be honest. Columbia will always have kicking problems. They are the only D1 team in the country with NO additional goal posts. You can recruit the best kickers in the country. But if you stick them on a "practice field" with no goal posts, no yard markers, and no ability to simulate plays for months you are going to run into problems. The kickers get no field goal practice the whole season! other than the few reps when the team has to vacate their only field for a precious few snaps. They stand on the sideline to deteriorate as the season progresses. there are very few opportunities from mid August to mid November. Then the entire offense and defense and all backups have to stand and watch. It is difficult for the coaching staff to keep the D and O off the field for long. If a kicker develops a kink in his mechanics there are no facilities to work it out. Somehow, the University has to look itself in the mirror and really ask are they committed to giving their players an equal chance???? No additional field goal posts on the University?? sheesh

At Mon Oct 10, 10:06:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

See, this is why Jake needs to filter posts... non-informed poster-ers who make idiotic comments about why CU loses games because they don't have extra goal posts. Columbia has had very good, if not great, kickers in their past - both Matt Pollard and Tom Boccofola had pro try-outs and they were both 1st team All-Ivy. Recently, that has not been the case, but that is just recruiting. I'm not saying that these kickers are bad because when the lot of them came here, it was considered a coup! In fact, The staff did a great job getting these kids. They just have not panned out. The transition from HS (and using a Tee), to college can be difficult. Not everyone can make that move. I agree that kickers are game-changers in this league, but I wouldn't give up on them just yet.

At Mon Oct 10, 10:17:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A brief needed break from the terrible coaching, etc.

Is this Columbia? It's Gerst, not Gertz. Sean (Garrett) not Shawn. And
Costco not Cosco (maybe we can buy a better coach there this week).

At Mon Oct 10, 10:23:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And the linebacker isn't Nick Misterias or even Mysterious, but
Mistretta. Thanks for your good play, Nick.

At Tue Oct 11, 04:40:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wien Stadium used to have additional goal posts but they were "lost" when the stadium was upgraded. The previous poster is the one who needs to be informed. It was not an idiotic post but correct and historically accurate. Those previous kickers had that advantage. The present ones are in a different situation. How can they improve if they have no independent access to kick field goals from mid August to mid November? It's common sense.


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