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Friday Water Cooler: Lehigh/Villanova

The "Friday Water Cooler" returns with some more spirited discussion on the weekend ahead. There's lots of Patriot League, I-AA, and Lehigh/Villanova tailgating action that's not to be missed!

Broadcast Info
Aside from listening or watching the game over the internet through lehighsports.com (click on Yahoo! College broadcast), this week's 6:00PM start will be carried by Channel 69 Allentown and by CN8 (Comcast) through most of the northeast. (There, you can catch Holy Cross/Northeastern at 1PM, and then Lehigh/Villanova at 6PM.)

I am really regretting the fact that I simply cannot go to this game live - family comes first. But I will also be here at home by 6PM (hopefully) watching the game live, blogging about it as well. Unfortunately, my Yuenglings will have to be enjoyed at home rather than at Villanova.

For those alumni going to the game, don't miss the alumni tailgate at the Law Department Parking lot starting at 3:30PM. It sounds like it will be an all-afternoon affair not only for this tailgate, but for all the other folks going to the Main Line to check the game out as well. It will be great, I am sure! I'm just sad that I have to miss it.

I-AA versus I-A
I'm not the first to congratulate three great wins last week by I-AA teams over I-A teams, but I need to extend my hearty congratulations to Richmond, Montana State and Portland State last week. Richmond blanked Duke 13-0, Portland State shut down New Mexico 17-6, and (in the biggest shocker of the day) Montana State beat Colorado by MORE THAN A TOUCHDOWN, 19-10.

Richmond winning was not a surprise (heck, I picked it last week), even though a shutout is somewhat of a surprise. Portland State beating a bad New Mexico team was not out of the realm of possibility. But I-A Colorado's loss to Montana State is different without a doubt. Colorado has a history in D-I - chances at the national championship, classic games (the "hail mary" versus Michigan in the early '90s leaps to mind), and a dominant program through history. Last year they were in the Big 12 Championship game. To beat them - with a QB in his first collegiate start, no less - was nothing short of amazing.

Montana State is on everyone's lips in college football - D-I, D-I-AA, everywhere. This is a huge win for the Big Sky and I-AA. It will be interesting to see if it's one of those magical years for the Bobcats in 2006.

Last Week's Water Cooler Picks
16-2! Yes, you read right, 16-2! One game I missed was the game everyone else in America would have missed - Montana State's upset over I-A Colorado. I'd gladly exchange the 16-2 record for the other game I got wrong -- you guessed it, Lehigh/Albany.

Water Cooler Picks: Patriot League, Week 2
This will be quick.

Northeastern over Holy Cross. This should be a close, defensive game too, but give the edge to the A-10 here. N'Eastern 17, HC 14.

Fordham over Albany. In week two, NO team needs this win as much as Fordham. I think they avenge their 2004 loss to Albany, and avenge last week's loss to Monmouth, in dramatic fashion. Fordham 28, Albany 21.

Stony Brook over Georgetown. A close defensive game. Stony Brook 10, G'town 9.

Bucknell over #24 Lafayette. I smell a wee bit too much hubris in the Leopard camp. These are always close, and I think the 'Pards could absolutely be looking ahead. Bucknell 28, Lafayette 24.

Water Cooler Picks: I-AA Top 25, Week 2
I-A Northwestern over #1 New Hampshire. The wrong town, the wrong situation. N'Western 52, UNH 34.

#2 Northern Iowa over D-II North Dakota. A closer game than you probably think, but still too much for the Sioux. UNI 24, UND 14.

#3 Appalachian State over #11 James Madison. The Dukes have some questions to answer, and Kidd Brewer stadium is NOT the place to answer them. App St. 30, JMU 20.

#4 Cal Poly over Weber State. Gotta beleive the 'Stangs have what it takes. Cal Poly 35, Weber State 22.

#5 Montana over South Dakota State. Again, Washington-Grizzly is not a good place to be looking for answers. Montana 42, SDSU 3.

#6 Furman over D-II West Georgia. No comment. Furman 70, West Georgia 3.

#7 Youngstown State over Maine. Some think Maine will give the Penguins a good shot here, but Maine has struggled in recent years, and the Ice Castle is a difficult place to play. YSU 31, Maine 24.

#8 Illinois State over D-II Central Arkansas. The Redbirds should put a hurt on UCA this time. ISU 49, UCA 14.

#9 Montana State over NAIA Chadron State. Won't be a game. MSU 77, Chadron State 10.

I-A Navy over #10 UMass. Will be tight, but I wonder about QB Coen's chance to get a big drive in a big spot. Navy 24, UMass 19.

#14 Delaware over D-II West Chester. Take the points. Delaware 24, WCU 10.

#15 McNeese State over D-II West Virginia Tech. Don't take the points. McNeese 56, WV Tech 10.

#16 Georgia Southern over Central Connecticut State. [UPDATED] Still call your bookie, but I'm no longer picking CCSU after learning that I-AA legend Erk Russell died today suddenly in a car crash. GSU 35, CCSU 22.

#17 Hampton over Howard. Look for a letdown, but not that much of a letdown. Hampton 28, Howard 20.

I-A TCU over #18 UC-Davis. Doubt Davis will sneak up on anyone this time. But it should be a game. TCU 35, UC-D 21.

#19 Portland State over Northern Colorado. [UPDATED] Still my candidate for 'letdown game of the week', but with the star reciever out... PSU 14, NoCo 0.

Indiana State over #21 Eastern Illinois. [UPDATED] As if anyone really cares, it's Saturday Morning and I'm flip-flopping my pick. Someone in the Top 25 has to lose this week, and it's the best choice in a tough week to pick upsets. ISU 31, EIU 27.

I-A Nebraska over #22 Nicholls State. Don't take the points. Nebraska 49, NSU 10.

I-A Kentucky over #23 Texas State. The Wildcats are too mad to let Texas State take them. Kentucky 38, Texas State 13.

Western Kentucky over #25 Eastern Kentucky. The most underrated game this week, in a great rivalry battle. The Hilltoppers have had the Colonels' number, and I think that will continue here in a tight game. WKU 28, EKU 27.

Press Roundup
No mash-up this week since I'm running out of time. Instead, here's the link to the local press. (No local coverage for Nova, though, what iditots!) Enjoy!

Allentown Morning Call:
Frustrated Lehigh Looking For Redemption Versus 'Nova

Easton Express-Times:
Lehigh Remains Positive After Loss

Brown & White:
Loss Won't Deter 'Hawks Versus 'Cats

Comments

Anonymous said…
I think us Pard fans are the most cautious. BU has come close to biting us on more than one occasion, and this one shouldn't be any different. Are we a better team? Absolutey. Can things/plays happen to make it a close game and maybe an upset. Absolutely.
Anonymous said…
CHUCK - TWO WORDS...SPELL CHECK.
Anonymous said…
Nova 28
Lehigh 10

Won't even be that close. Rebuilding year. Lehigh is too small on both lines.

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