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Home, Ivy Season Kick Off Saturday at Noon

Home, Ivy Season Kick Off Saturday at Noon

Big Red vs. Bulldogs at Yale Bowl


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NEW HAVEN, Conn. –The 2013 Ivy League season gets under way this Saturday with Cornell coming to Yale Bowl for a noon kickoff that can be seen live on the Ivy League Digital Network and heard on the Yale Football Radio Network. The Bulldogs (1-0, 0-0 Ivy) and Big Red (1-0, 0-0 Ivy), squaring off on Youth Day, are coming off wins over Patriot League teams last week.

Yale leads the series with Cornell 44-29-2 heading into the 76th meeting. The series began in 1889 with a 60-6 Bulldog win at New Haven. The Red has won three of the last five games.

Yale's 2012 Ivy season got off to a rough start at Ithaca. Jeff Mathews threw for 340 yards and four touchdowns as the Big Red beat the Bulldogs 45-6. Two early turnovers were converted into a pair of TDs and the game was gone from there. The Bulldogs managed 350 yards of offense, but the points did not come with the ball movement.
Senior QB Henry Furman rushed for three TDs and led the Blue to four scores on the four series he played in the first half in Yale's 39-22 win at Colgate last Saturday. Yale, which won its seventh straight opener, jumped out to a 20-0 lead and never saw its lead dwindle to less than three possessions. Furman and sophomore Morgan Roberts (8-15, 66) shared the snaps behind center. Tyler Varga rambled for 236 yards and one score, while Kyle Cazzetta connected on both of his field goal attempts. Will Vaughan's nine solos and 10 overall tackles were a team-high.

Senior DE Dylan Drake (Plantation, Fla.), who had six solos, three tackles for loss and a sack shared the first Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week Award. Drake, who also caught a touchdown pass on special teams, became a starter last year after a year on JV and a year missed with an injury. With six seconds left in the first half and the field goal unit coming on the field, Drake lined up on the 15-yard line and then darted toward the end zone on the snap. Derek Russell took the snap and hit Drake on the run to close the first half of a 39-22 Yale win at Colgate on Sept. 21. It was Drake's second career TD catch.

Jeff Mathews (15-23, 285, 3 TD), the 2011 Ivy Offensive Player of the Year, had a big day in his team's 45-13 win over Bucknell. Cornell, which trailed 10-0 and had hafl as much possession time - not to mention seven fewer first downs than the Bison, registered 285 of its 302 yards of total offense throwing the ball in foul weather. Brett Buehler (4-5-9) led the Big Red defense as it forced six turnovers.

Playing the entire game, the five offensive linemen paved the way for Yale's offensive success last week. The big Bulldogs helped the visitors run 86 plays and hold the ball for 32 minutes. The Elis, who played an up-tempo game, did not allow a sack while gaining 6.2 yards per play.

1    elected team captain (Palin)
4    returning Elis who started a game at QB last fall (Williams, Russell, Furman, Varga)
5    All-Ivy players (Gavin, Oppenheimer, Randall, Smith, Varga)
6-8    height of the tallest player (Iverson)
11    wide receivers
20    seniors
86    offensive plays Yale ran at Colgate
96    players on roster
99th    current season of Yale football in the Bowl
290    pounds of the heaviest player (Friedline)
595    regular season games played in the Bowl
Junior All-America candidate Tyler Varga (Kitchener, Ont.) picked up where he left off last fall with a 236-yard rushing day at Colgate. The third-best rushing day ever for a Yale back included a TD and a 6.1 average. That got him Ivy Offensive Player of the Week and FCS Running Back of the Week honors. He led the nation with 199.4 all-purpose yards per game in 2012 and was the Ivy League leader with 119 rushing yards per game (10th in FCS). Varga rushed for over 100 yards in five (most in Ivy) of his seven games (9 yards shy vs. Cornell, 4 vs. Penn) and was the only Ivy player to rush for more than 200 in a game. His 220 at Columbia was sixth best for a Bulldog player and got him FCS national RB of the week from College Football Performance Awards. He was the first newcomer to run for triple digits in his Yale debut since Mike McLeod in 2005.  Varga, who played at the University of Western Ontario in 2011, was a star track & field athlete who also competed in swimming, basketball and baseball. Varga was a star regional sprinter and jumper, but injured his leg and was convinced by his coach to help the team by throwing the shot (45', 6.5") and javelin (110').

Senior Henry Furman (Portland, Ore.) enjoyed one of the most prolific days ever for a Yale QB last week at Hamilton when he scored three TDs (25, 1, 33) on four rushing attempts. He got the natural hat trick by making them consecutive scores, all in the first half. They were his first career rushing TDs; he had one receiving TD in 2012. The last Yale QB to run for three scores was Alvin Cowan in 2002 vs. San Diego. Furman, who also completed 11 of 17 passes for 129 yards at Colgate, was a JV quarterback in 2010 and 2011. He made a successful transition to receiver in 2012 and had nine catches, including a TD, as a backup. After three QBs went down in the 2012 Penn game, he jumped in and played the last four Saturdays. His first collegiate start at any position came at QB against Princeton when the former Lincoln High (Portland, Ore.) School star completed 18 of 28 passes for 184 yards and a score as Yale's most valuable offensive player. Furman, who worked at the Yale Alumni Magazine last summer, threw for 5,000 yards and 43 TDs before coming to Yale.

Sophomore QB Morgan Roberts (Charlotte, N.C.) made a successful debut behind center at Colgate by engineering three scoring drives in the second half on a very windy day. Roberts, who played at Clemson last fall, completed eight of 15 passes. As a red-shirt freshman in 2012 at Clemson, Roberts was the No. 3 signal-caller and completed two of his three passes.
Senior Derek Russell (Newton, Mass.) is Yale's star utility player. Russell, currently on the depth chart as a DB and holder, has also played QB, WR and other special teams roles for the Bulldogs. His most famous utility role was in leading the Blue to a win over Penn as a QB last fall, completing 13 of 20 passes (1 TD) and running the ball 11 times for 61 yards and a TD. Russell passed for 2,100 yards and 21 TDs his senior year at Newton South High.

Sophomore Eric Williams (Portland, Ore.) started seven games in 2012 and had some big days. Against Colgate, he rushed for 114 yards (threw for 171) to become the first Yale QB to rush for triple digits since Sept. 21, 2002. Williams had 1,056 passing yards and six TDs. He is the brother of Yale football players Scott '13 and Sean Williams '11, and the son of former NFL player, Larry (Browns, Patriots, Saints, Chargers). Eric became Yale's first freshman starter behind center since Mike McClellan '01 (first Eli rookie QB to start a varsity game since World War II) in the 1997 season opener at home against Brown. Williams was the starting QB at Jesuit High School in Portland for two years before his family moved, and he spent his senior campaign at St. Ignatius near Cleveland. One of the assistant coaches on the St. Ignatius team was former Yale captain Rory Hennessey '05.

Senior WR Deon Randall (San Diego, Calif.) made a splash in his return to the Elis. After missing the 2012 season, he snared seven passes for 71 yards, had a 10-yard rush and returned three punts for 10 yards at Colgate. His career best is eight catches for 102 yards vs. Brown in 2011, the year he earned All-Ivy honors. Randall has 68 career catches.

Senior WR Chris Smith (Midlothian, Va.), a 2011 All-Ivy League pick, returned to the lineup after missing last season. Smith caught five passes and returned four kickoffs for 94 yards. He is Yale's career leader in kickoff return yardage with 1,562, while he is tied for sixth in receptions with 97. Smith's two returns for TDs at Brown in 2010 as a sophomore are an Ivy League record.

Junior WR Grant Wallace (St. Louis, Mo.), who was second on the team last fall with 35 grabs for 371 yards and three scores, had a pair of catches in game one. He made the school's top 10 in single-game catches with 11 for 118 yards and a score at Harvard last November. Wallace, the son of former Bulldog Bob Wallace '78, had three or more receptions in four games.

Senior WR Cameron Sandquist (Redmond, Wash.), who did not have a catch in week one, led the team with 54 catches and 589 yards last season, including a career-best 10 catches against Colgate. He was on the tail end of a school-record, 98-yard pass play in the second quarter at Georgetown last fall. His 187 yards in that game were the most by an Ivy player in 2012. Sandquist, who has six career TD grabs, scored on his first two collegiate receptions as a freshman in 2010 against Columbia. He was also the team's top punt returner; his 37-yarder vs. Princeton was the longest in the league. He is equally famous for his role as shortstop on the 2004 Little League World Series Northwest (Redmond LL) Team.
Sophomore DB Cole Champion (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.), who began 2013 with two solos at Colgate, earned a starting safety spot early in 2012 and was the leading returning tackler (46-25-71) from last fall. He notched a career-high nine solos (10 overall) against Lafayette and then had 8-3-11 vs. Penn. Champion was an all-state football linebacker and lacrosse midfielder at St. Thomas Aquinas High. He is the school's career tackles leader and helped them earn "national championships" in 2008 (with current teammate LB Dylan Drake '13) and 2010. Nine of his former teammates are playing Division I football, five in the FCS and four Ivy Leaguers.

After two seasons as the starting punter, junior Kyle Cazzetta (Slate Hill, N.Y.) took over at both kicking spots last week and had a big day despite heavy winds. He connected on both (46, 31) field goal attempts, and the 46-yarder was the longest for a Yalie since Tom Mante split the uprights from 54 (Ivy record) in 2009. Cazzetta, who punted into the wind on four of five kicks, had a 30-yard average. He was named to numerous pre-season all-conference teams after averaging 40 per punt and landing 13 inside the 20 in 2012. His career-best outing was at Brown with a 46.1 average on seven kicks and four inside the Brown 20, including a 72-yarder (3 yards shy of school record). He is No. 16 (2nd in region) on Phil Steele's FCS pre-season national list of punters.
Two All-Ivy League seniors, a pair of juniors and a sophomore are the most experienced of the offensive linemen back for 2013.

Seniors: LT 79 Wes Gavin (6-6, 286, San Diego, Calif.), C 60 John Oppenheimer (6-0, 264, Menlo Park, Calif.)
Juniors: RT 70 Ben Carbery (6-5, 287, Oak Park, Ill.), LG 67 William Chism (6-3, 277, Ridgeland, Miss.)
Sophomore: RG 50 Luke Longinotti (6-4, 265, Burlingame, Calif.).

Here are some other notes on Yale offensive linemen.
LT Wes Gavin had numerous scholarship offers but came to New Haven and became Yale's freshman MVP in 2010 before getting All-Ivy honors in 2012… 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. Both of Gavin's parents are under 5-foot-8… John Oppenheimer, who moved over from the defense his sophomore year and became an All-Ivy center in 2012, played both sides of the line in high school. An active member of the Mandi Schwartz Marrow Donor Registration Drive at Yale, he made a live-saving marrow donation last spring and went to Washington, D.C. this past summer to speak to members of congress about the need for funding. His father, Peter Oppenheimer, is Apple's senior vice president and Chief Financial Officer… LG William Chism owns a fire wood business back home in Mississippi. His father, Brad Chism, played football at Millsap College and was a Rhodes Scholar. He is President of Zata|3 Consulting, a Washington, D.C.-based direct voter contact firm. The younger Chism had offers from every Ivy school and several other FCS institutions… RG Ben Carbery was a National Merit finalist and the captain of his high school's Scholastic Bowl team, which finished 17th at the 2010 National Academic Quiz Tournament national championship (he was 8th in the individual competition). Carbery, who was Yale's freshman MVP in 2011, is the son of Paul '83 and Sherry '83 Carbery. His aunt, Patti Carbery '86, played basketball and softball at Yale. Luke Longinotti, who played in all 10 games last year as a newcomer, was a three-sport (thrower, basketball) athlete in high school. His father, Ron, swam at Stanford and his mom, Libby, was varsity golfer at Stanford. His sister was a volleyball player at Columbia.

The two youngest head coaches in the Ivy League square off this week at the Bowl… The Eli offense had just one turnover last week, a fumble… Yale's one non-league home game is against Fordham, which already has wins over Temple and Villanova and is 3-0. Both the Rams (Oct. 19) and Cal Poly (Oct. 5) are nationally ranked… The Elis' opening possession began on its own four and resulted in a 96-yard scoring drive… The defense kept the Raiders off the scoreboard for the first 28:30…The 39 points at Colgate were the most by the Blue since scoring 47 vs. Georgetown in the 2008 season opener.
Tom Mante '10 tied the 104-year-old school record for longest field goal and broke the Ivy League record with a 54-yarder at the Bowl against the Big Red in 2009… Jeff Mroz '05 tied the school record with five TD passes in 2005; Ashley Wright '07 caught three Jeff Mroz passes that day to tie a Yale record… Robert Carr '05 rushed for a sophomore record 235 yards and four scores at Ithaca in 2002…  Billy Brown '02 tied the Yale standard for TDs in a game with three in 2001… P.J. Collins '04 set the "modern" school mark with seven punt returns in 2001 (team's 10 also a record)… Yale had a school record 214 kickoff return yards in 1990 on eight returns… Ken Hill '79 broke a 19-year-old Yale record with a 100-yard kickoff return in the 1978 game… The Blue set a team record for punting average (47.8) in 1970.

Four freshmen started on defense at Colgate and there are five on the two-deep on that side of the line. No newcomers started on offense but three are on the depth chart. That does not include PK/P Bryan Holmes (Holland, Mich.), who served as Yale's kickoff man last week. Holmes, using the wind at times, booted five of his eight kicks into the end zone for touchbacks. CB Foyesade Oluokun (St. Louis, Mo.) - the toughest Yale name to announce this year - made five solos and had seven overall stops on defense. RB Candler Rich (Newnan, Ga.) spelled Tyler Varga with 4.2 yards on four carries.

One hundred and nine former Yale students have become college football head coaches, though no Elis currently serve that role. However, the 2013 Vanderbilt University football team includes two coaches who are former Yale receivers. Bob Shoop '88, a 25-year veteran of college coaching, is the defensive coordinator. Chandler Henley '06, the captain of the 2006 Ivy Champions, is in his second year as an offensive graduate assistant coach. In addition, former Yale offensive lineman Kyle Metzler '03 is the offensive tackles/tight ends coach for Dartmouth.
Dartmouth owns the most Ivy League titles since league play officially began in 1956. Yale and Harvard trail Penn by two for second.

No.      Team                               Last Title
17        Dartmouth                       1996
16        Penn                                2012
14        Yale                                 2006
14        Harvard                           2011
 9         Princeton                         2006
 4         Brown                             2008
 3         Cornell                                  1990
 1         Columbia                         1961

Next season marks the 100th anniversary of Yale Bowl, which opened for the playing of the 1914 Harvard game. The cornerstone event of the season-long celebration is the Sept. 27 contest with Army, an old rival that helped fill the famous stadium on numerous occasions. Army and Yale last met in 1996 at West Point, the last game in New Haven was 1988. The Bulldogs have played 595 games and are 372-203-20 in the Bowl.

Yale has gone five straight seasons without a tie after regulation time. The Elis are 4-3 in OT games overall since its first, a 34-31 loss at Penn in 2003.The last OT game was a 26-20, triple-extra-session win at Penn in 2007.
Tony Reno, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, and some of his players are at world famous Mory's (306 York Street) every Tuesday (Sept. 17 through Nov. 19) at noon for the Dick Galiette Yale Football Media Luncheon. This event is limited to media only. Please contact Yale Sports Publicity Director Steve Conn ( if you would like to attend.

Legendary coach Carm Cozza and Ron Vaccaro '04 call the action of Yale Football this fall on the flagship station - ESPN Radio (AM 1300) – for the new Yale Football Radio Network. The broadcast can also be heard on Talk of Connecticut radio stations WDRC (AM 1360 Hartford), WWCO (AM 1240 Waterbury), WMMW (AM 1470 Meriden), WSNG (AM 610 Torrington) and WDRC (FM 102.9 HD -3 Hartford). You can also hear the games on iHeart radio and on Some of the broadcasts also air on WELI (AM-960). Cozza, who handles the color commentary, is the career victory leader among Ivy League coaches and a member of the College Football Hall of Fame. This is his 16th season in the booth after a 32-year head coaching tenure during which he led the Bulldogs to 10 Ivy League Championships. The play-by-play is done by Vaccaro (follow @yalevoice on Twitter for Yale football updates), entering his ninth season as the voice of the Bulldogs. He has been covering the team since his freshman year in 2000. Vaccaro has won five Emmy Awards for his work with NBC Sports and Olympics and is the editorial director for NBC Sports and the NBC Sports Network. He has covered a total of five Olympics. His TV on-air work includes the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2009 World Swimming Championships and college hockey.

The Cornell, Fordham and Brown home games and all of the road league games can be seen on the Ivy League Digital Network ( Cozza and Vaccaro call the games from the Bowl, while the home team announcers work Yale's away games. The Harvard (NBCSN) game is a national TV broadcast.

A recent tradition continues with Yale football radio broadcasts in 2013. Every third quarter, Vaccaro and Cozza are joined by a former Yale player on the Yale Football Radio Network. Ex-Bulldog running back Bill Primps '71 will be on during the season opener. Doug Johnson '74, an ex-Eli guard and center, is in the booth Cornell week.  Former Yale QB Chris Hetherington '96 (11 years in NFL) will be at the Cal-Poly game, while record breaking WR Ralph Plumb '05 is set for Dartmouth. Ryan Fodor '09, a QB for the Blue, is in the booth for the Fordham game.

The WYBC Sports Staff, led by director Evan Frondorf '14, covers all games on and on AM 1340. Their coverage includes a pre-game show 30 minutes prior to kickoff and interviews with Tony Reno and different players each week.
The Bulldogs, off on Mondays, are on the field from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday through 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 is no student-athlete scheduling conflicts. All schedules are subject to change. Check with Steve Conn at least 24 hours in advance.

There are three 1 p.m. games confirmed for this fall: Oct. 20 vs. Milford Academy, Nov. 10 at Brown and Nov. 22 vs. Harvard.

The Yale Bowl press box has a taste of New Haven with Yorkside Pizza & Restaurant serving slices, pasta and salad to the media on home Saturdays.

Pat Graham '01, a former Yale tight end and defensive lineman, is a defensive assistant coach for the New England Patriots. He is in his fifth season at Foxboro. Graham, a Waterbury, Conn., native, was a member of Yale's 1999 Ivy title team. Michael McDaniel '05 is in his seventh NFL campaign and third with the Washington Redskins. He also coached the Houston Texans and Denver Broncos.

Yale, which last played in the Golden State in 2005 at the University of San Diego, has another trip to California this season. The Bulldogs play Cal Poly Tech (San Luis Obispo), which is ranked in the latest FCS national polls. The Mustangs are 1-2 after falling at Colorado State last week and have Portland State this Thursday. The only two games the Blue has played on the West Coast were against USD.

"Inside Ivy League Football," a weekly online radio show dedicated to Ivy League football, returns for its third year for the 2013 season but now has a new home on The Ivy League® Digital Network. Airing Wednesdays at 7 p.m. and hosted by Dan Loney and Brian Seltzer, "Inside Ivy League Football" takes an in-depth look at all the on-field gridiron action and all the news and notes surrounding football in the Ancient Eight.   Each episode is packed with highlights, statistics and expert analysis in its 'Around the Ancient Eight' segment. With its interview segments 'Program Profile' and 'Alumni Spotlight,' the show visits with players, coaches and administrators who impact Ivy League football, both past and present in exclusive one-on-one conversations. Fans and alumni can engage with the show via Facebook ( and Twitter (@insideivyfb, #IvyFootball) and contribute content for its 'Social Media Mash' segment with chances to win prize packs courtesy of The Ivy League. Check each week for this season's episode schedule and guest lineups. Every episode from the first two seasons are also available on The Ivy League® Digital Network at

Be the first to know what's going on with the Bulldogs -- Follow @YaleAthletics on Twitter, become a fan of Yale Athletics on Facebook!. For more information on following specific Yale Athletics teams visit us online at

There are three significant changes in the Yale football program this season. One the fans will notice, the other two are less obvious. There are new Nike uniforms. The "Y-Dog" logo has been taken off the shirt and the stripe on the pants is nothing like the double blue stripes that ran the full length in recent years. The other two changes are in facilities. Clint Frank Field has a new FieldTurf surface, and the varsity strength & conditioning room at the Payne Whitney Gym has been completely renovated with an efficient training system and a synthetic turf track running through the middle of the room.

The following players were elected to the team's leadership council: seniors Beau Palin, John Oppenheimer, Cam Sandquist and Hank Furman; juniors Tyler Varga, Will Chism, Grant Wallace and Will Vaughn; sophomores Eric Williams, Cole Champion, Sebastian Little and Austin Reuland.

Yale's home opener vs. Cornell is Youth Day, Yale Family Weekend and Coach To Cure MD Day… The Fordham game is New Haven Chamber of Commerce and Walter Camp Football Foundation Day at the Bowl… Heroes Day and Yale Employee Day are the co-promotion when Columbia comes to town… The season finale against Harvard marks the "Fill The Bowl" campaign.


filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director