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Showing posts from November 20, 2005

Predictions: I-AA playoffs

There are 6 other I-AA playoff games being played this weekend. Here's my fearless predictions for all these games this weekend:

Richmond at Hampton. Congratulations on Hampton with their 11-0 season, and congratulations on Richmond's 8-3 year. This is an intriguing first-round matchup. Hampton has plenty to prove, but I think the difference will be the inability of the Pirates to score on Richmond's defense. Give Tutt a big play or three, and I think the Spiders get through. Richmond 17, Hampton 6.

Southern Illinois at Eastern Illinois. The Panthers surprised most of I-AA nation by hosting a first-round game. I think the Salukis, first-round doormats in '03 and '04, reverse the trend this time, even on the road. SIU 38, EIU 3.

Nicholls St. at Furman. The surprise winner of the Southland takes on a grateful first-round host in Furman. Beating Furman at home seems like a tall order for a team who may just "be happy to be here", but the triple-optio…

Mini Patriot League Previews

As promised, here's a mini-breakdown of the Lafayette/Appalachian St. and Colgate/New Hampshire games.

Colgate/New Hampshire:
On Colgate's offense: QB Mike Saraceno and RB Jordan Scott have been the engine that has made this Raider team go. WR DeWayne Long is a great target on the outside, but the key to Colgate's game is not turning the ball over. On offense, when they've held onto the ball, they've won games.

On Colgate's defense: LB Jared Nepa anchors a Raider team with a tough secondary and solid overall defense. With 18 takeaways, Colgate's secondary was the best in the Patriot League in 2005, while the defensive front held most opponents to under 100 yards rushing.

On New Hampshire's offense: QB Ricky Santos and WR David Ball are I-AA.org "cover boys", and there's a reason for that. Santos is a tough customer who can run well, while Ball is one of the more amazing WR's I've seen with lots of acrobatic grabs, even in double…

It Still Hurts, But Let's Face Facts

"The loss" still hurts.

If you read the comments on the other Lehigh/Lafayette posts below, it's clear that the rest of Lehigh Nation feels the same way. Fans are mad, they're filled with regret, and frustration. But the loss still hurts, more than any other Lehigh football loss that I can remember.

It hurts, and I think I know why.

At the turn of the 19th century, Lafayette had some revolutionary football teams that changed the way the game was played. Lafayette's only year where they were recognized as national champions was in 1896 - a year where Lehigh refused to play Lafayette due to the fact that they felt that "Babe" Reinhardt was ineligible to play college ball.

Through the 20th century, most Lehigh/Lafayette games were about Lehigh Valley pride and bragging rights. Sure, sometimes Lafayette would have a great team, or Lehigh would be in the Division II playoffs, but never at the same time. Although a beloved tradition during NCAA's &quo…

Lehigh's season is over; Lafayette's and Colgate's are still on

Don't know if you know, but both Colgate and Lafayette are in the I-AA playoffs today.

Lafayette will be travelling to Boone, NC to play Appalachian St.

Colgate will be travelling to Durham, NH to play New Hampshire.

Lehigh's "bubble" is officially burst. I didn't think Lehigh would make it, but until the picks are actually made, there was always some hope. It's now officially time to wait for next year.

"The Game" still hurts. It hurts, it hurts, it hurts. If I took away from Lafayette's determination to put themselves in a position to win, I apoligize. Let me be the first to say that Lafayette deserved the win. They put themselves in a position to make a play to win the game, and they did. Lehigh did not. And two things stand out on Lafayette's team on their play this Saturday. Jonathan Hurt played a whale of a game - he deserved the MVP probably before the miracle catch, but he stepped up in an huge way.

Second, the Lafayette lineback…