Monday, July 25, 2016

Know Your 2016 Opponents: Holy Cross

Today's "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series continues with the team that is predicted by College Sports Journal to finish 3th in the Patriot League: Holy Cross.

Scared of the Purple People eaters this year?  I am.

They're a veteran-laden offense, with a four year letterman at quarterback, hosting Lehigh this year at their home in "Woostah".  Defensively, conventional football scholarships have the Crusaders with a quickly built defense that got better as the season went along.

They're a team that hasn't made the jump - yet - but could, playing Lehigh at home, poach the Mountain Hawks.

It's a game I have circled on the calendar.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Know Your 2016 Opponents: Princeton

Today's "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series continues with the team that is predicted by College Sports Journal to finish 4th in the Ivy League: Princeton.

Lehigh's visit to Powers Field at Princeton Stadium last fall wasn't a whole lot of fun for the Mountain Hawks.  In fact, it was one where head coach Andy Coen felt like Lehigh made too many mistakes to win.

But what really stood out to me was Andy's response to a question I had - whether he felt like the Mountain Hawks needed to play the perfect game to win on that thick, hot, humid evening.

"Absolutely not. I'll go back out and play them [again] right now," Coen said.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Know Your 2016 Opponents: Bucknell


Today's "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series continues with the team that is predicted by College Sports Journal to finish 5th in the Patriot League: Bucknell.

Bucknell was picked to finish 5th in the Patriot League, but does that mean Lehigh fans should look past the Bison?  Hardly.

By a wide margin, the Bison had the best defense in the Patriot League last season, and just two years ago, walloped Lehigh 45-24 and didn't even need two injured starters at QB and RB to do it.

Someone has to be picked 5th in the Patriot League, and according to the College Sports Journal, that team is Bucknell.  But they could certainly win it all.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Know Your 2016 Opponents: Lafayette

Today's "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series continues with the team that is predicted by College Sports Journal to finish 6th in the Patriot League: Lehigh's arch-Rival, Lafayette.

(Last week, I published Know Your 2016 opponents: Georgetown.)

Lafayette needs little introduction to those who know Lehigh well.  (151 meetings on the gridiron will do that to a Rivalry.)

In parallel to the College Sports Journal preview, this preview encompasses the one that is printed there - with some additional goodies for Lehigh fans as well.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Know Your 2016 Opponents: Georgetown

It's finally time for the "Know Your 2016 Opponents" series!

In parallel with College Sports Journal, I am doing a full Patriot League preview (among others).  Today we cover No. 7: Georgetown, whom Lehigh plays on October 15th.

This preview will encompass what is written there, but also will have extra content that Lehigh fans in particular need to know about the matchup for the upcoming season.

Let's put it this way, in terms of Lehigh: Though Georgetown is picked to finish 7th, there is plenty to be scared of about this team that finished within a touchdown of Lehigh, Fordham, and Colgate last year, while knocking off Bucknell as well.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

On Criminals And College Athletics

Where does it ever end?

That's the question I keep asking myself lately.

It seems to have added up for me from six months of lunacy, one where collegiate athletic departments have been caught up with such a large number of horrifying incidents.

There's serious allegations of rape by athletes at Baylor and Vanderbilt.  Louisville hiring prostitutes to lure in potential recruits.  The case of the Stanford swimmer who got off with a slap on the wrist after raping a young woman.  They are literally everywhere, with new twists and turns coming in so fast it's hard to keep up with it all.

Even past scandals involving college athletes don't seem to keep themselves out of the news lately, either.  The Penn State Jerry Sandusky story that never seems to die got a new lease on life when alleged abuses were revealed as far back as the 1970s.  The when-will-it-ever-end revelations of sham classes at North Carolina.  The continuous trickle of revelations at Miami (FL), where the latest is that football players got free use of luxury cars.

The most worrying thread that weaves itself through this collegiate offseason is the word "criminal" -- an offseason where criminals reveal themselves as students on college campuses, criminals that hang out with athletic departments, trying to get some of the fame, fortune and swag, and criminals reveal themselves in the management of collegiate athletics as well.

It's enough to depress any college football fan, and to rightfully make one think: Can it happen here?

Thursday, June 02, 2016

2016 Lehigh Football Schedule Features Every Nearby FCS Rival You Can Think Of

As we hit the 92 day mark before the 2016 Lehigh football season officially starts, it's time to take a look at the overall schedule - and opponents - the Mountain Hawks will be facing.

Every Lehigh football fan knows that their Rival of Rivals, Lafayette, is only 18 miles away from Bethlehem.

What fans may not know is that, by drawing a circle around Lehigh on Google Maps, you can surround seven of the Mountain Hawks eleven 2016 opponents.  (The site NCAA Savant has an interactive, zoomable map that shows the schools quite clearly.)

The only FCS programs within the circle that Lehigh doesn't play are Delaware, Wagner, and Columbia.

Lehigh will be hosting Monmouth, Bucknell, Fordham, and Princeton, all of whose fan bases are within two and a half hour's drive, and will have "road trips" to Penn, Villanova, and Lafayette, which couldn't be easier for Lehigh football fans.

However, if you wanted to earn frequent flyer miles supporting Lehigh football, you had better hope the Mountain Hawks make the FCS playoffs.