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Players of the Game, Lehigh/Bucknell, Press Links

(Photo Credit: Pete Shaheen, Morning Call)

It's "Rivalry Week", where the buildup for Lehigh/Lafayette starts to build to a fever pitch. It also gives Lehigh fans a chance to think about past wrongs in "The Rivalry" (for example, in this picture to the right, how was a facemask penalty not called?). But there is unfinished business that needs to be taken care of in terms of closing out the Bucknell game and going "around the horn", sort of, one more time.

Around The Horn
As one at-large team for the FCS playoffs (realistically) fades from view, another emerges. Colgate's 45-12 win over Georgetown puts the Raiders at 7-3 and, quite possibly, in lone for a possible at-large playoff berth if they beat Holy Cross this weekend and get some help. Junior RB Jordan Scott had over 100 yards rushing, and sophomore WR Pat Simonds and senior WR Erik Burke both had 100 yards receiving. Senior RB J.J. Bennett was taken off the field in a stretcher as the game was called with 1:17 to play, but (thankfully) the word is that he is OK with only a mild concussion. It will be an interesting subplot on Saturday to follow Colgate's game against Holy Cross and see if they can become one of those elusive 8-win teams. With Scott running the ball, they certainly have the capability to do it.

The Hoyas closed their season at 1-10 with plenty more questions to answer concerning how to get to a winning record while competing in the Patriot League. On a happier note, though, their closing-day loss had an announced attendance of 2,718. In a stadium which holds 2,400 fans supporting a 1-10 team, that's great news for the Hoyas for next year.

Holy Cross, in a 31-21 loss to Lafayette, completed a two-game skid that saw them fall from the drivers' seat for a playoff bid to 7-4 and no practice on Thanksgiving. How did Lafayette do it? By "bringing heat," as junior QB Dominic Randolph said in the post-game press conference. In addition, a long drive at the beginning of the third quarter wasn't able to be stopped by the Crusaders to allow them to take a 21-14 lead. “Scoring right after halftime was big for them,” head coach Tom Gilmore said. “And it wasn’t just scoring. It was the way they did it, churning it out on a long drive. We just couldn’t seem to stop them.” The Crusaders now have to settle for playing the role of spoiler versus Colgate.

As to where Lafayette's brains are this week, that's real easy. The master motivator started by having his whole team take a knee after the Holy Cross win, and saying, "they always remember November". The way they took it to Holy Cross physically is what had them win this game, and with their performances in November to draw on, this is a hot team going into the 143rd versus Lehigh. The Mountain Hawks had better come prepared to get beat up.

Players of the Week, Bucknell
It's an early end to the "Player of the Week" voting but it's necessary to get to all the Lehigh/Lafayette craziness. So without further ado, let's get to the winners.

On defense, junior LB Tim Diamond gets another defensive game ball with his 5 tackle, 1 sack performance - but it's his 58 yard touchdown fumble recovery which kickstarted the scoring for Lehigh that he's getting the nod this week.

With not much in the way of special teams return yards, the winner this week was junior P/K Jason Leo for Special Teams Hawk of the week with a 33 yard FG and a nice 5/5 on extra points. He only had one punt, but it was a good one for 40 yards.

And I happily give this weeks' player of the week honors to senior "slash" Sedale Threatt, with his 78 yards rushing, 2 receptions for 6 yards, but most importantly his 3 touchdown runs. In a tough year where Threatt has been injured and pretty much everything else has happened to him, it's great to see him get a good game under his belt, especially before "The Rivalry".

Press Links
Morning Call: Second Half Sinks Bucknell
Morning Call: Hawks Still Have Questions To Answer
Express-Times: Lehigh Turns Its Focus To Lafayette
Daily Item: Lehigh Dominate Second Half

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