Skip to main content

Bad Day for the Patriot; Weekend Predictions

It was a good thing Lehigh didn't play this weekend, as the Patriot League got spanked in all 6 contests. It's the first time that I remember it ever happening. I went to see Lafayette lose a heartbreaker to a team which is forecast to be a middle-of-the-pack Ivy team in Princeton. Colgate got "upset" by a middle-of-the-pack (I'm being generous) Dartmouth team, 26-21. (How do you beat UMass, yet lose to Dartmouth and Central Connecticut State?) Bottom-feeder Columbia put Fordham at 0-3. Brown spanked Georgetown. Cornell spanked Bucknell. Holy Cross surprised most by playing nationally-ranked Harvard tough, but they still lost 31-21.

From this surprising development, Lehigh now has to have an even bigger target on their backs. With all these losses, it is highly unlikely that any Patriot League team other than Lehigh would qualify as an at-large team for the I-AA playoffs unless one of them takes the Patriot league championship - which would require thay they beat Lehigh.

Surprisingly for a bye week, Lehigh jumped in the national polls. At #13 in the Sports Network and ESPN/USA Today polls, and #12 in the Any Given Saturday poll, clearly voters think Lehigh is still one of the best teams at the national level. Every opponent from now on will think of us as "nationally-ranked Lehigh". That means, no rest; no weeks off. This coming week we go to scholarship school VMI, as they take a shot at us.

Last week I went a respectable 17-7. This includes going 3-3 in "Patriot League Black Saturday", and having 4 suprising losses in the I-AA Top 25, so overall I'm not too disappointed.

Really Right: James Madison 65, Delaware St. 7. Real score: JMU 63, Delaware St 10. 5 points off - I can live with that.

Should Have Been Right: Columbia 23, Fordham 17. Fordham has four - FOUR - chances to tie it up, including 2 shots in the last 4 minutes. Three turnovers, and one missed execution on a fake punt, and they blow it. These guys had ample chances to get it to overtime. If so, Fordham 31, Columbia 28, doesn't look too bad.

Was I Ever Wrong!: Rhode Island 49, William & Mary 28. Obviously I was surprised, as was the rest of I-AA nation, that the Tribe couldn't hold the hitherto anemic Rams to less than 7 TDs. It's not really missing the game, which I predicted to be W&M 27, URI 17. It's missing the scope of the loss, the skill of URI, and the poor defense of W&M.

Look for my Lehigh/VMI preview this Wednesday.

Comments

Go Lehigh TU owl said…
Chuck, I love what ya do, but please stop putting Lehigh plays scholarship yadda yadda this week. It makes it seem like we have an inferiority complex or something.
Anonymous said…
Im going to agree with the last poster. Though LU doesnt have official scholarships, if they want you there, they can get you there. Our players are as good as the elite A 10 teams, I believe that has been proven time and time again. Nobody wants to hear the scholarship crap anymore.

Popular posts from this blog

Nick Shafnisky Is Pushing Hard to Get To Play at the Next Level in Football

"Don't take anything for granted, just keep pushing."
Those are the words of QB Nick Shafnisky, told to The Whitehall-Coplay Press all the way back in 2013, about his preparation as a high school athlete.
And they seem to summarize the Whitehall, PA native perfectly, then as now.
Dubbed the "Male Athlete of the Year" by that publication, the article goes on about Shaf's many exploits at Whitehall high school - leading the Zephyr football team to a co-Lehigh Valley Conference title, becoming the first player ever in that conference to rush and pass for over 1,000 yards, and earning the league's co-MVP award as well.
He also was a member of the Zephyrs playoff basketball team, and for good measure also helped set a record for the 4x100 relay team as well.
At Whitehall, and at Lehigh, coaches pushed him, but it was his own hard work that helped make him the best athlete he could be.
This weekend, Shaf, like every eligible college football player, will be …

#TheRivalry Flashback: November 21st, 1987: Lehigh 17, Lafayette 10

Since becoming an undergrad at Lehigh back in the late 1980s, I first heard about the historic nature of the football team and "The Rivalry" through the stories that fellow students would share.

I did not attend the final meeting between Lehigh and Lafayette at Taylor Stadium, which was the final time a football game would be played there.

Those that did attend said that was that it was cold.

"I remember it being one of the coldest games ever," Mark Redmann recollected, "with strong Northwesterly winds and the temperature hovering around 20.  By the end of the game, the stands were half empty because most of the fans just couldn't take the cold.

"Fortunately, several of my fraternity brothers snuck in flasks to help fend off the chill."

Dominick Bragalone Goes Into Monster Mode As Lehigh Is One Win Away From Title

It has been a most unusual season for Lehigh.

Starting the year off at 0-5 and getting swept in their out-of-conference schedule, the Mountain Hawks were in danger of having their season go off the rails.

But two things have come together over the last five football games that have put Lehigh on the brink of back-to-back championships.

The first is the late blooming of the Lehigh defense, which kept battling every week since the low point of the September 30th loss to Wagner to do the job in four of their five Patriot League conference games. 

The second is the development of junior RB Dominick Bragalone into a bellcow running back, a back who has to be in the conversation for Patriot League offensive player of the year.

In five Patriot League games, Bragalone has run for 863 yards in 5 games, rushing for 11 touchdowns and adding two more receiving touchdowns as well. 

The South Williamsport, PA native certainly wasn't unknown before this week - after all, as a freshman and a sop…