Skip to main content

GTTS: What's Up Out East?

This weeks "Get through the Summer" piece is actually on, my column called "What's Up Out East?" (or, in the words of an immortal beer ad, WASSSSSUP Out East?) It covers all the eastern conferences, and specilates briefly about the near future of all the eastern I-AA conferences.

I was surprised at Matt Dougherty's and Dave Coulson's reactions on two issues in particular. First was their unanimous feeling that the CAA/A-10 was heading for a split sometime very soon into a CAA and America East conference. I don't feel like it's a slam dunk just yet, unless IUP joins the America East.

Second was their feelings on the Patriot League. Dave felt like the Patriot League was "already there" with the elite in I-AA and would continue to "play games" with the grant-in-aid's in the future to ensure it remains that way. Matt felt like maintaining the need-based scholarship model was the most important thing, and (though he didn't say this explicitly) that no changes to the scholarship model were coming anytime soon.

Scholarships are a hot-button issue for most PL fans, and in the piece I did glance over the button without pushing down on it - I think. I'm planning on a companion piece later this summer (hopefully) talking more in depth about the issue - arguably the biggest topic among PL fans today. I think it is fair to say that although no decision on scholarships is imminent, I do think it fair to say that the discussions are being made, if behind closed doors, on the issue.

Without blowing any future blog posting, I can say that scholarships vs. grant-in-aid's is an extremely complex issue. It goes to the heart and soul of the league, and the principles on which it was founded.

Please feel free to comment on the column here.


Ngineer said…
The scholarship v. need-based grant issue is one left to the school presidents of the PL. I don't see the situtation as demanding a change. The PL is well respected as one of the few conferences that has been able to balance rigorous academics with competitive athletic teams. Lehigh, Lafayette, and Colgate have held their own with the elite of I-AA and therefore I don't anticipate a rush to change the status quo.
jim stevenson ' 65 said…
The academic reputations of the PL schools are well established and would not be diminished by moving to full scholarships for football just as Lehigh's academic reputation has not been diminished since it moved to full scholarships for wrestling. If "only the best" is good enough for Lehigh" why not make Lehigh's football program the best it can be by offering full scholarships. Potential candidates for those scholarhips would still have to "get through" the admission's department.

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 …

What Are You Doing the Night of Lehigh's 2017 Home Opener?

I have this vision.

It's the weekend of the home opener at Murray Goodman Stadium, Labor Day weekend.  It could be a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday.

And it's 6:00 PM.

In 2018, the Lehigh football team will open the season with a big celebration of the football program - at Navy, Lehigh's first game against an FBS team in over a decade.

In 2017, why not, as a one-off opportunity, try to have one Lehigh football game, the home opener, be the first-ever night game at Murray Goodman Stadium?

Will it cost money?  Yes.  Will it be easy?  Probably not.

However, is it doable?  I've got to believe the answer is "yes".

Seven Positive Thoughts About All the Patriot League Recruiting Classes

It's recruiting season.  Every incoming recruit is a Patriot League all-star, everyone is a first team all-American, everyone is undefeated.  It's all good times, a chance for kids to be admitted to some of the best Universities in the world.  In that, it's a win for everyone.

While we wait for each of the remaining recruits to be announced as a part of their recruiting classes, I thought I'd comb through all of the incoming classes of the Patriot League and tell you what sticks out to me.

This summart isn't a ratings-based system, than folks like 247Sports have in terms of measuring the number of "starred recruits" (they list Holy Cross as the "winner"), or even a hybrid-based system, like LFN's yearly Patsy Ratings (last seasons "winner": Lehigh) or HERO Sports' list of the top overall FCS recruits (which lists Lafayette as the "winner").  It's just one guy, looking at the recruit lists, and giving his opinion.