Friday, August 22, 2014

Know Your 2014 Opponents: Monmouth

By definition, every team I profile in this "Know Your 2014 Opponents" series is new.  There are new faces, a fresh, new 0-0 record, and a fresh start for the football season.

For Monmouth, though, who visits Lehigh on September 27th, there's a whole lot more new stuff.

Start with a new football conference.  The Hawks (or Jersey Hawks, as I call them) move to the Big South in football only, where they will be competing against some football powers like Coastal Carolina and Liberty.  Gone is their independent schedule from 2013.

Then head to the helmets and uniforms, where it shows off Monmouth's status as an up-and-coming athletics program.  Gone are the gothic interlocking "M" and "U", and in its place a silver helmet, with a classic looking "M", takes its place.

Perhaps unfortunately for the Mountain Hawks, though, the players who inhabited the old uniforms last season return to inhabit the new ones, meaning Lehigh will face a team with a boatload of experience.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

In Preseason, Lehigh In Unfamiliar Territory, Especially on Defense

Once upon a time, Lehigh's football team was many preseason pundits' consensus No. 1 in the Patriot League.  It wasn't even a question.

Sure, some of that was due to the fact that Fordham, now for the first time in years an full, card-carrying member of the Patriot League, was ineligible.

But in 2010 and 2011, Lehigh was the undisputed king, with wins over their Rivals, undisputed Patriot League championships, and even playoff victories against Northern Iowa and Towson.

This season, it's a new team with a dynamic offense and a team loaded with talent that is the undisputed champion going into the 2014 season.  With one of the best FCS quaterbacks in the nation, QB Michael Nebrich, and a talented defense backing them up, the Rams now have the targets on their backs.

And if Lehigh hopes to stand a chance to challenge the new kings of the hill, they will have to improve immensely on the defensive side of the ball.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Don't Attack The Summer of "Ice Buckets" - Just Do It

It's been called "slacktivism".

It's been called narcissism masked as charity.

But the "ice bucket challenge", which has torn its way in the amazing span of three week from a thing that college athletes and coaches were doing to a world-wide phenomenon, is nothing to cynically wag your finger at.

During the last few weeks, a multitude of Lehigh coaches, players, media members, and even athletic director Joe Sterrett have taken the icy bucket of water over their heads.

In doing so, they have done incredible good in raising awareness about an awful disease that really needs all the help it can get in regards to a cure.

I know this because I didn't just start giving to ALS causes in the last two weeks.
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