Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Halftime Report

So what do we know about the league halfway through the season?

Here are my top 5 stories of 2012 at the midway point:

1) Harvard Dominance

The 5-0 Crimson are better than expected, and that's saying something for a team that just about everyone expected to dominate the Ivies. The offense has been particularly fearsome and the defense doesn't do anything to really put the team in jeopardy. It really doesn't look like anyone is going to beat Harvard this year.

2) Princeton Resurgence

Allow me to eat a big plate of virtual crow right now because I thought Princeton was going to be the dregs of the league this season. Instead, the Tigers defense has been remarkable and the offense is at least able to stop the bleeding when it counts. At this point, it looks like Bob Surace will keep his job in New Jersey.

3) Cornell Still Not Quite There

Nothing can stop the Cornell offense... except Harvard. The Big Red are improved from last season overall, but not enough to seriously contend for the title. Even after missing last weekend's game vs. Monmouth, QB Jeff Mathews is the league MVP right now, but until they can beat the big boys Cornell will have to settle for 6-4 or 7-3 at best.

4) Brown Steps Back... for Now

The Bears 45-31 loss to Harvard, even at home, wasn't anything to be embarrassed about. But the 19-0 shutout loss to Princeton shows just how far this offense has fallen. I still think Brown has a good shot to finish in the top four, but this is the off year the Bears feared.

5) New Coaches Yet to Turn Things Around

There's no solid evidence that Tony Reno's Yale team or Pete Mangurian's Columbia squad have truly improved right now. That's not to say they aren't better, but with just two wins between them, these programs aren't jumping out of the gate. In two weeks, we'll see which new coach has made the most progress when the Elis come into Wien Stadium to play the Lions on national TV.

Other top stories in the Ivies this year...

-Harvard's RB Treavor Scales running wild on everyone

-Columbia's RB  Marcorus Garrett emerging as a star with a shot to become only the second 1,000-yard rusher in school history

-Cornell WR Luke Tasker logging 764 receiving yards after just five games.

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