Yale Needs Win To Keep Title Hope
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Fifty years ago the Yale football team used a 43-22 win over Princeton to propel it to a perfect season and an Ivy League title. The 2010 Bulldogs hope for a similar fate as the Tigers come to Yale Bowl and the Class of 1954 Field on Saturday. The Elis, tied with Harvard for second place and a game behind Penn, look for an important win on the day the last perfect Yale team celebrates its golden anniversary. The noon kickoff, the last home game for 24 Yale seniors, can be seen live on yalebulldogs.com and heard on WELI Radio (AM-960), weli.com and wybc.com.
On paper it might be a bit lopsided, but paper has never determined the outcome of a game. Other than its passing offense (ranked 3rd in the league), Princeton is among the bottom half in most Ivy team categories while Yale is in the top. Rivalry games like this render stats less significant. We have to focus on those things, so here's one key matchup. The Bulldogs, who gave up 269 passing yards last week, face talented WR Trey Peacock, who ranks among the top 10 in the FCS in receiving yards and catches and also returns kicks.
One hundred and six years ago, a young rivalry featuring two of the venerable powers of the gridiron made history by playing in the first game captured on film. Thomas Edison's camera focused on Yale's 12-5 win at Princeton that November day, and the rivalry has developed into the second-longest in college football. This week marks the 133rd meeting, second only to the Lehigh-Lafayette (145) rivalry. Some Old Blue put more emphasis on this rivalry than THE Game. Yale leads 72-50-10 overall and has taken six of the last eight.
SPECIAL DAY AT PROVIDENCE
The Bulldogs beat Brown 27-24 on "special teams day" at Brown Stadium. There was plenty of offense, with Alex Thomas (Ansonia, Conn.) running for 121 yards and Chris Smith (Midlothian, Va.) catching six throws. Yale also had big defensive plays, like sacks from Jesse Reising (Decatur, Ill.) and John Pagliaro (Lutherville Md.), but the Eli special teams stole the show. Smith, the game's leading receiver, become the first Bulldog ever to return a pair of kickoffs for TDs. He sprinted 79 yards for the end zone and then, two minutes later, went 83 yards. Then there was Philippe Panico (Boston, Mass.) booting a pair of 36-yard field goals and splitting the uprights on all three PAT. Greg Carlsen's (Orlando, Fla.) 33.4 punting average does not figure into his impact for the Bulldogs Saturday, but he pinned Brown inside its 10-yard line twice with perfectly placed kicks. To top it off, Gio Christodoulou (Miami, Fla.) returned four punts for 30 yards on the best Yale special teams day anyone can remember.
It was no surprise that Chris Smith, who had 223 all-purpose yards at Brown, earned The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS National and Ivy League Special Team Player of the Week honors. He became the first player in Ivy League history to return two kickoffs for TDs in the same game. Smith is also the only Yale player ever to return two kickoffs for TDs. He scored on consecutive Brown kicks (2:23 apart) with a quick Bears' drive (field goal) between. Smith took the first 79 yards to give Yale a 17-7 lead in the second quarter. After the Bears kicked a field goal, the Eli sophomore went 83 yards with the next one to put the visitors up 24-10 late in the half. A Bulldog had not scored on a kick return since Steven Santoro went 94 yards against San Diego in 2006. His 573 kick return yards are already a school season record, while his 829 career yards rank sixth. Against Brown, Smith also had a game-high six catches for 45 yards and now leads Yale with 35 grabs on the year.
THOMAS LIKE A TANK ENGINE
Alex Thomas, who has consecutive 100-yard outings, was the consistent offensive force the Bulldogs needed against the Bears to control the ball, especially in the fourth quarter when Yale wanted to run out the clock. He carried the ball 27 times for 121 yards (4.5), including a 27-yard TD run in the first quarter. Thomas has three 100-yard games this season and four in his career. The junior had a career-high 137 (best day for a Yalie this year) yards on 19 runs (7.2), including a 42-yard TD, against Columbia. He leads Yale with 562 rushing yards and six rushing TDs and is fourth with 22 catches. His 47-yard run at Cornell is the longest run by a Bulldog this fall. Thomas, a former Ansonia High School star, is the most prolific (8,279 yards, 114 TDs) runner in Connecticut High School history.
The Yale defense, which held Brown to 58 rushing yards and just 57 total plays, had a big day despite giving up 24 points. The Elis stopped 11 of 13 third-down conversions, broke up seven Joe Springer passes and sacked the Brown QB three times.
Yale offensive coordinator Brian Stark's system has been upgraded with depth and skill this fall, and one of the primary variables is freshman RB Deon Randall, who played three different positions at Francis W. Parker High School in San Diego. He had a season-high four runs (22) and four catches (18) last week at Brown. The 5-foot-8, 175-pound athlete averages 4.8 per carry and 7.5 per catch. He also returns kickoffs (27.4) and punts (7.2).
TIGERS FALL TO PENN
No. 18 Penn gained 600 total yards, including 396 on the ground with five rushing scores on the way to a 52-10 victory over Princeton on Powers Field at Princeton Stadium last week. Princeton gained 170 yards, including 110 in the air from quarterbacks Andrew Dixon and Connor Kelley. Dixon completed nine of 22 passes for 71 yards and a touchdown to Andrew Kerr, while Kelley completed four of 10 for 39 yards. Senior Jordan Culbreath led Princeton with 46 yards rushing on nine carries, but he was injured midway through the game. Kerr caught six passes for 51 yards, a 10-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter, while senior Jon Olofsson led the team with 12 tackles.
LAST YALE-PRINCETON GAME
A pair of touchdowns in the second half cut an 18-point Eli deficit down to just four points with 11:42 to play, but Princeton tacked on a field goal and denied a late drive by Yale to finish off a 24-17 win at Princeton Stadium. Turnovers by both teams kept the score relatively low for a game that featured 785 yards of total offense - 402 from Yale and 383 from Princeton. The Bulldogs were hurt by three interceptions, while four lost fumbles vexed the Tigers. Eli QB Patrick Witt (23-45, 290, 3 int) connected with Peter Balsam eight times for 92 yards. Shane Bannon (1 yard run) had the other Yale TD while Geoff Dunham (9-2-11) and Dan Walsh (6-6-12) led the Blue in tackles.
Sophomore PK Philippe Panico (pronounced pa-NEE-ko) has booted five field goals on as many attempts over the last three games. His three-pointer with no time left at Dartmouth was the game-winner, while his 36-yard boot in the fourth quarter at Brown gave the Elis a three-point win. Things didn't start so well in his first season of varsity action. Panico, who is 12 for 13 on PAT, missed his first two collegiate field goal attempts and was just one for his first six before going on the streak.
ON THE MONEY
Senior SS Adam Money (Whiteland, Ind.) is the active career interception leader for Yale with eight, one shy of the school's career top 10 list. He leads the team with three this fall. Money has taken back two (77 vs. Brown '09, 60 vs. Georgetown '08) for scores. Money was a 2009 first-team All-Ivy pick. He has also performed well in the classroom with a 3.46 GPA (biology major) while interviewing at medical schools this fall.
You don't have to dig deep to find good stats on senior WR Gio Christodoulou (Miami, Fla.). He is second on the team with 33 catches but has a Yale-best 500 yards and a 15.2 average per catch. His 9.8 average on 11 punt returns are also a team-high and put him in position to challenge an old school record. The top Yale average for a season is 10.8 by Lou Muller in 1959. Christodoulou had a career-best nine catches for 124 yards against Georgetown on opening day. He has two career punt returns for TDs and moved ahead of former Chicago Bears great Gary Fencik '76 into third place on the school's career punt return list with 506 yards. His 553 career kickoff return yards rank 10th at Yale.
Junior LB Jordan Haynes (49-31-80), Yale's leading tackler, is second among Ivy players with better than 10 per game. He has led the Bulldogs in total stops in seven of eight games this fall. The National Football Foundation High School Scholar-Athlete from Folsom, Calif., also leads Yale in recovered fumbles (2) in his first year as a starter. Haynes scored Yale's first TD of the year on a four-yard fumble return late in the first quarter on Sept. 18.
RETURN OF PAGS
Senior LB John Pagliaro Jr. (Lutherville, Md.) came off the bench to make two great plays last week in the win at Brown. He flew through the Bears' backfield on a blitz to record his first career sack in the first half. On the next play, Pagliaro, who may be Yale's most athletic LB, made a diving tackle. He finished the day with a career-high two solos and three overall stops. His father, John Pagliaro '78, was a two-time Ivy League MVP running back at Yale.
The ball burst after it was kicked during the first meeting in 1873 and it took 30 minutes to replace it... Princeton's James Haxall drop kicked a school-best 65-yard field goal in a 2-1 Tiger win in 1882... Playing both ways for the entire game, Yale's "Iron Men" ended Princeton's 15-game win streak with a 7-0 win in 1934 at New Jersey... Yale held the orange and black to one first down and minus-four yards rushing in a 20-14 Bulldog win at Princeton in 1945... The 1953 Bulldogs erased a 17-0 Princeton halftime lead and won 26-24... RB Don Gesicki '76 completed a 97-yard pass play to Gary Fencik at Princeton in 1975 in the longest pass play in Yale history as the Blue won 24-13... 1981 was the battle of Bob Holly (Princeton QB) vs. Rich Diana '82 (Yale RB). Holly, who scored the winning TD with 4 seconds left, threw for a school-record 501 yards while Diana set the Yale record with 222 rushing yards in a 35-31 Tiger win at Princeton... Kevin Moriarty '86 hauled in a 14-yard pass from Mike Curtin '86 with 5 ticks on the clock in Yale's 27-24 win in 1984... The 1995 Elis spoiled an undefeated season by winning at Princeton behind QB Chris Hetherington '96 (229 total offense)... The Bulldogs, who tied the game on a 22-yard TD pass from Alvin Cowan '05 to Chandler Henley '06 with no time left on the clock in the fourth quarter, won a double-OT game at Princeton in 2003 by recovering a fumble after Yale kicked a field goal. The Tigers took a 34-31 decision at the Bowl in 2006 that led to the two teams sharing the Ivy crown.
Senior WR Jordan Forney (Bloomington, Ind.) is second on the team with 32 receptions and leads Yale with three TD receptions. His 90 receptions and 11 TD catches rank seventh at Yale. Over the last two weeks, Forney jumped over three different former NFL players (Calvin Hill '69 for TDs, John Spagnola '79, Gary Fencik '76 for receptions) on the school's career charts.
The Blue sacked opposing QBs 15 times this fall. DEs Sean Williams (Portland, Ore.) and Tom McCarthy (Chester, N.J.) lead the team with three, while four others Bulldogs have been in on two takedowns each. Twelve different Yale players have earned credit for solo or combined sacks.
WITT WORKING OFFENSE
Junior QB Patrick Witt (Wylie, Texas) joined an elite group of Yale QBs who have thrown for at least 3,000 yards. He has completed 59 percent of his passes for 1,781 yards and 11 scores this fall. Witt, whose parents are both commercial pilots, started seven of the eight games this year. He is the Ivy's top passer with 254 yard per game, while also leading the league in completions, attempts, completion percentage and total passing yards. Witt has 19 career TD passes (10th on Yale career list) to go along with a pair of rushing TDs this season. Witt was named Ivy League co-Player of the Week (35-55, 407) on Sept. 20 after he threw for 400 yards (6th time it has happened at Yale) and scored the winner against the Hoyas. A backup at Nebraska in 2008, Witt started six Yale games in 2009 and led the team with 1,449 yards and eight TDs. He is also an outstanding student (3.85 GPA) who writes for the Yale Daily News, is a member of the Intercultural Affairs Council and has done some prison ministry work.
Witt Ranks at Yale
Career: Attempts (533, 6th); Completions (311, 6th); TDs (19, 10th); Yards (3,230, 6th); Total Offense (3,159, 9th)
Season: Attempts (292, 7th); Completions (173, 7th)
GOTTA HAVE HART
Senior QB Brook Hart (State College, Pa.) may be the most talented backup in the Ivy League. He made his only start of 2010 on Oct. 16 against Fordham and threw for 227 yards. His longest connection was a 47-yard throw to Chris Smith. Hart completed all three passing attempts on the winning drive that ended with his 29-yard scoring play to Jordan Forney in the fourth quarter. He shared (4 games) the starting duties last year with Patrick Witt and then took spring ball off to pitch for the Yale baseball team.
P Greg Carlsen, who has a 37.5 average and six of his 16 punts downed inside the 20, was a freshman at the University of Florida last year and did not try out for the football team. He began missing the game while attending UF contests. That's when he decided to send his video around to some schools and see if anyone was interested in his services. Carlsen, who was No. 1 out of 702 in his high school class, owns his school's record for most punts (67) and yardage (2,407) in a season. He was a first-team all-county and all-metro punter for a two-time regional champion and a state runner-up squad in the football crazy Sunshine State.
FRONT AND CENTER
Yale QBs have been sacked seven times in eight games, a far cry from the 32 given up in 10 games last fall. It's clear the offensive line has improved in 2010. Freshman Wes Gavin (San Diego, Calif., 6-5, 275) and senior Alex Golubiewski (Green Bay, Wis., 6-6, 280) have been the starting tackles most of the year. Juniors Colin Kruger (Sarasota, Fla., 6-3, 300) and Gabe Fernandez (Honolulu, HI, 6-0, 273) got the nods at guard the most this fall. Senior Jake Koury (Dublin, Ohio, 6-2, 270) is the starting center, but missed a few games and was replaced by junior Jeff Fell (6-5, 286, Garden City, N.Y.).
Fell, whose dad was a PK at Navy, was recruited as a DL after playing for the National Rugby team in high school. He traveled to England to play Portugal, Romania and Canada… Gavin's father ran track at Kansas University. Both of the 6-foot-5 lineman's parents are under 5-foot-9. He was named scholar-athlete by the San Diego chapter of the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame while also throwing the shot and discus in high school… Golubiewski played basketball in high school. The son of Polish immigrants and fluent in their language, he will head to law school after graduation… Kruger might be the strongest guy on the team. He had offers to play at FCS schools including Stanford… Fernandez, a mechanical engineering major, was a very good soccer player in high school. His brother played offensive guard at Harvard.
When freshman WR Cameron Sandquist (Redmond, Wash.) came to Yale and met classmate DB Max Napolitano (Camarillo, Calif.), they quickly figured out that they had both played in the 2004 Little League World Series. Sandquist's Northwest Team was there with Napolitano's West squad (they did not compete against each other). The same happened to seniors WR Jordan Forney and SS Adam Money, who played against each other in Indiana all-star youth baseball before joining Yale's class of 2011.
Despite missing two games, senior DE and captain Tom McCarthy (Chester, N.J.) has the most (23) tackles among the defensive linemen. He is tied for the team lead with three sacks. McCarthy had a career-high 3-6-9 at Dartmouth while making 4-1-5 against Columbia, including three TFL and a forced fumble. The second-team All-Ivy pick last fall (4 sacks) was Yale's MVP of the defensive line. He earned a medical hardship from his freshman year and is now the fifth Yale captain since 2001 who has taken a fifth year of eligibility.
WR Cameron Sandquist (Redmond, Wash.) is the only Yale freshman to score this fall with two TD receptions against Columbia. However, that's not what the 5-9, 155-pound receiver will remember most about the game. Sandquist's two catches against Columbia were the first of his career, and both went for scores from 10 and 15 yards out. No other Bulldog has had a two-TD catch day in 2010.
Eight Yale freshmen have cracked the varsity lineup this fall. San Diego natives OT Wes Gavin and RB Deon Randall, RB Elijah Thomas (Rochester, N.Y.), WR Cameron Sandquist (Redmond, Wash.), DT John Oppenheimer (Menlo Park, Calif.), TE Keith Coty, TE/LS Kyle Wittenauer (Richmond, Va.) and DB Nick Okano (Los Angeles, Calif.) are the class of 2014 Elis who have seen varsity action this fall. Gavin and Wittenauer (LS) are the only starters among the newcomers but Randall has seen regular action. Sandquist has the only points among the rookies, while Okano and Oppenheimer are the only two frosh with tackles.
Senior Shane Bannon (Southbury, Conn.) is Yale's H-back, the guy who can block, catch passes and run with the ball. He had a career-high six catches at Dartmouth and has 10 catches for 78 yards this fall. His first career carry resulted in a TD at Princeton in 2009, his first catch went for a score against Georgetown in 2008. Bannon, who nearly had to rule out playing in 2010 because of an injury, has not missed a practice in two years.
Yale did not pick off a pass against Brown, the first time in five games an opposing QB has not been intercepted. The Elis have a pick in six of the eight games this fall… Alex Thomas has led the Blue in rushing six times this year. Sophomores Mordecai Cargill (Cleveland, Ohio) and Javi Sosa (Miami, Fla.) have been the team's leading runner in the two other outings. Both second-year players missed the Brown game with an injury.
Yale has scored on the final play of the fourth quarter to win games twice this season. Patrick Witt dove into the end zone from a yard out to erase a deficit against Georgetown on the game's last play. Philippe Panico split the uprights at Dartmouth with no time left. The Elis have not won a pair of games in a season on the last play since 1937. In addition to the two wins on the last play, the Blue also has a one-point win over Fordham.
Smith is the most common surname in America, so it's no surprise that Yale has three (Caleb, Chris, McConnell) from different classes on its roster. All three are on offense, two are WRs (Chris, McConnell) and Caleb is an end. Chris and Caleb (West Orange, N.J.) have seen varsity action this fall, McConnell (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) is looking for his first chance.
Two former Bulldogs are coaching in the NFL this season. Dick Jauron '73, who has spent 32 years in the NFL playing and coaching, is the new secondary coach for the 5-3 Philadelphia Eagles, 26-24 winners over the Colts on Sunday. His unit is tied for fourth in the league with 11 interceptions, they are eighth in sacks with 21. Jauron was the 2001 AP Coach of the Year with the Chicago Bears and his most recent head coaching gig was at Buffalo. Pat Graham '01, a former Yale tight end and defensive lineman, is a defensive assistant coach for the 6-2 New England Patriots, whose five-game win streak ended last Sunday at Cleveland. The Pats' defense is tied for fifth in the league with three rushing TDs allowed. Graham was a member of Yale's 1999 Ivy title team.
CATCHING THE BULLDOGS
For the 13th consecutive season, all 10 Yale Football games can be heard live on New Haven's News/Talk 960 WELI-AM and free online at 960WELI.com. Ron Vaccaro '04 (play-by-play) and Carm Cozza (color) have the call, which can be heard on AM radio throughout Connecticut and across Long Island Sound, for their sixth season together. WELI's broadcasts can now also be accessed for free via the "iheartradio" application available on most "smart phones". It can be downloaded either by typing www.iheartradio.com into your phone's browser or by typing "iheartradio" in the app search field on your phone and is free of charge.
Every third quarter this season, a different former Yale player will join the WELI Radio broadcast. P.J. Collins '04 (Georgetown), Rick Fehling '74 (Cornell), Jay Pilkerton '09 (Albany), Kevin Kelly '78 (Dartmouth), Joe Walland '00 (Fordham), Bobby Fernandez '75 (Columbia), Matt Polhemus '08 (Penn), Chuck Mercein '65 (Princeton) and Bill Primps '71 (Harvard) are the 2010 lineup.
COZZA HONORED AT MIAMI, YALE
Former Yale Football Head Coach Carm Cozza, the winningest coach in Ivy League history and a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, will have the Yale football locker room named after him (Carm Cozza Complex) this Saturday during a dedication ceremony at the Smilow Center. He was honored at his alma mater, Miami University, on Oct. 23 for being one of the "Cradle of Coaches." Cozza, one of three former Miami players included in that weekend's events, had his statue unveiled in a ceremony at Yager Stadium prior to the Miami-Ohio University football game.
JOEL E. SMILOW '54 HEAD COACH OF FOOTBALL
Tom Williams, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Football at Yale, is in his second season at Yale and his second as a head coach overall. Williams is 10-8 overall with the Bulldogs and 0-1 vs. Princeton. He came to New Haven after two seasons as an assistant with the Jacksonville Jaguars and is in his 13th season of college coaching. Williams has worked at his alma mater, Stanford, Hawaii, Washington and San Jose State. He has been part of four Bowl Game appearances and two Bowl victories.
ANCIENT EIGHT CROWNS
Dartmouth owns the most Ivy League titles since league play officially began in 1956. Yale and defending champion Penn are tied for second with Harvard close behind.
No Team Last Title
17 Dartmouth 1996
14 Yale 2006
14 Penn 2009
13 Harvard 2008
9 Princeton 2006
4 Brown 2008
3 Cornell 1990
1 Columbia 1961
TUESDAYS AT MORY'S
Tom Williams, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, and some of his players are at the world famous Mory's (306 York Street) every Tuesday (Sept. 14 through Nov. 16) at 2 p.m. for the Dick Galiette Yale Football Press Conference. This event is limited to media only. Please contact Yale Sports Publicity Director Steve Conn (email@example.com) if you would like to attend.
FIELD OF STREAMS
All six home games this season will be video streamed live (pay per view) on yalebulldogs.com through Yale's All Access with Ron Vaccaro and Carm Cozza providing the call.
The Bulldogs, off on Mondays, are on the field at 7:30 a.m. (until approx. 9:30) Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday behind the baseball stadium. Fridays are walk-through days either at Yale Bowl or on the road and times vary. Players and coaches are available for interviews with working media following the practice if there are no class conflicts. All schedules are subject to change.
STUDENTS OF THE GAME
Broadcasts of Yale football, along with several other sports during the year, are available on the Yale student station, WYBC, and can be heard free on-line at wybc.com. Sports director LeRoy Cole '12 heads each broadcast.
YALE ON YES
Yale on YES was another big success for 2010 with three games from Yale Bowl broadcast live on the YES Network. This was the third straight fall the Bulldogs appeared on the network home for New York Yankees baseball.
THE GAME OF THE WEEK
The Yale-Harvard game on Nov. 20 at Boston is the Ivy League Game of the Week on Versus, the national sports cable TV company.
Five Bulldogs recently visited the Boys and Girls Club of the Lower Naugatuck Valley's Joel E. Smilow Clubhouse in Ansonia to help kids learn the importance of eating healthy and staying fit… Junior RB Alex Thomas (Ansonia, Conn.) and Ansonia native John Coughlin (Yale Football Office) spoke to 125 fourth graders this fall at John G Prendergast Elementary School in Ansonia... Junior CB Drew Baldwin (Alexandria, Va.), co-chair of the Yale Black Men's Union Community Outreach Committee, is in his third year of outreach work. Baldwin is responsible for creating the lesson plans and the calendar of events, working to promote personal growth and development through educational activities. "We try to do this through exposing the mentees to new ideas and experiences and, most importantly, through building lasting relationships between mentor and mentee. We work toward trying to help these high school kids become young men. In the Black Men's Union we measure success by how many lives we impact. Because our mentoring program puts us in a position to impact lives to a great extent, we take that responsibility very seriously," said Baldwin (31-8-39 last year with two interceptions), who has mentored over 30 kids. Classmate Jordan Haynes works closely with Baldwin on the project.
JV NOTES FROM SUNDAY
Freshman WR Cameron Sandquist had three TD catches, including the game-winner in the fourth quarter, as the Yale JV team beat Army 35-28 last Sunday at Clint Frank Field. QBs John Whitelaw (Hinsdale, Ill.), Dez Duron (Shreveport, La.) and Henry Furman (Portland, Ore.) hit Sandquist with scoring passes. Freshman DB Max Napolitano (Camarillo, Calif.) had an interception to clinch the win. The Yale JVs finish at Harvard on Nov. 19.
REISING THROUGH CLOUDS
Jesse Reising (Decatur, Ill.), a senior LB who was a semifinalist for the 2010 William V. Campbell Trophy (NFF scholar-athlete award), is third on the team with 37 tackles after eight starts. His biggest play this year was a PBU on Columbia's last offensive play late in the fourth quarter, but he also had a big sack at Brown. Reising owns a 3.75 GPA with a focus on economics and political science. He may be locked in on his majors and football right now, but this Eli has his sights set on his country. The Bulldog defensive standout was home last summer taking classes to get his flight license before he completes Marine Corps Officer Candidate School next year. Reising recently spent time in Washington, DC, working closely with veterans' service organizations such as the Wounded Warrior Project, American Legion and Disabled American Veterans. Reising, the class valedictorian at Eisenhower High School, also participated in various community outreach activities through his Yale fraternity, including events to raise money to fight prostate cancer, Relay for Life, and making care packages for Navy SEALs in Afghanistan.
This season marks the 50th anniversary of Yale's last perfect football squad. The 1960 Elis, who shared the Lambert Trophy with Navy, were Ivy champions and ranked 14th in the final Associated Press poll, went 9-0. They will be honored this weekend at the Bowl. Fifty-five players from that team will be celebrating the golden anniversary of the championship squad including Mike Pyle, a former NFL star with the Chicago Bears, Tom Singleton, Bob Blanchard, Hardy Will and Ben Balme, all members of the class of 1961.
INDIVIDUAL WEEKLY AWARDS
Here are the weekly league, conference or national awards garnered by Bulldogs:
The Sports Network/fathead.com FCS National Special Teams Player of Week: WR Chris Smith (11/8)
Ivy League Offensive Player of Week: QB Patrick Witt (9/20)
Ivy League Special Teams Player of Week: WR Chris Smith (11/8)
Ivy League Honor Roll: LB Jordan Haynes & WR Chris Smith (9/20); RB Alex Thomas (9/27, 11/8); WR Jordan Forney (10/3); QB Patrick Witt (10/11, 1025); DB Chris Stanley (10/11); LB Jordan Haynes (10/19); WR Jordan Forney (10/25)
ECAC Offensive Player of Week: QB Patrick Witt (9/20)
ONE BIG LOCKER ROOM
High on the facility wish list of Tom Williams was moving his team from multiple rooms at the Smilow Field Center to one large locker area. That wish came to fruition in the form of the Carm Cozza Complex. A dressing area designed by ProZone Lockers and meeting rooms for coaches and players highlight the complex that will also include a shrine to the hall of fame former Yale head coach.
LEADERS COME TO YALE
The annual survey of Bulldogs produced the anticipated results; Yale is a team full of leaders who produced as much off the field as they did on it. Here is the 201 breakdown.
81 players were captains of their high school football team
55 players were captains of another sport in high school
57 players were a national honors society member
8 players were class president at their high school
8 players were student body president at their high school
11 players were class valedictorian at their high school
2 players were class salutatorian at their high school
The following Yalies have distinguished themselves according to a vote by their teammates.
DB Josh Grizzard (Jr, Zebulon, N.C.)… most humorous
DB Geoff Dunham (Jr, Dallas, Texas)… most intelligent
DB Adam Money (Sr, Whiteland, Ind.)… most vocal leader (not captain)
LB Jesse Reising (Sr, Decatur, Ill.)… most likely to be U.S. President
QB Dez Duron (So, Shreveport, La.)… most interesting activity (musician) & best singer
RB Alex Thomas (Jr, Ansonia, Conn.)… strongest player (pound-for-pound)
WR Jordan Forney (Sr, Bloomington, Ind.)… most involved in community outreach
"Hawaiian Fridays" are the rule in the Yale Football Office. Show up without a Hawaiian shirt and you risk a fine. Three coaches (Tom Williams, Ikaika Malloe, Doug Semones) have worked in high school, college or pro football on the island while three players, Gabe Fernandez (Honolulu), Kolu Buck (Kaneole) and Jake Semones (Haleiwa), grew up there.
YORKSIDE IN BOWL
The Yale Bowl may be in West Haven, but the press box has a taste of New Haven with Yorkside Pizza & Restaurant serving slices and salad on home Saturdays. Rather than interrupting your work with a lunch at halftime, the food is now served on its arrival before kickoff.
filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director