Friday, October 28, 2016

Seeking a New Kind of Streak

Al Bagnoli is 18-6 lifetime vs. Yale

Yale Elis vs. Columbia Lions

October 28, 2016

Kickoff Time: 7:00pm

Location: Robert K. Kraft Field at Wien Stadium

Game Time Weather Forecast: 45 degrees, clear, possible moderate wind gusts

The Spread: The game is "pick 'em"

TV/Radio: The game is nationally televised on NBC Sports Network . Superior audio can be heard on the Ivy League Digital Network with Jerry Recco and Sal Licata on the call.

Columbia Game Notes

Yale Game Notes

Leading Story Lines

1) Talk about role reversal! Yale comes into this game in a tailspin at 1-5 and with most Eli fans calling for Head Coach Tony Reno's head. The negative vibe swirling around Yale seems like it could snowball for the rest of the season, or the Elis could be fired up to fight back.

2) On the flip side, Columbia seems to be on the rise even after an ugly win over Dartmouth last week. Tonight's game will give the Lions the chance to win two in a row for the first time since they had a three game winning streak in 2010.

3) Columbia's defense has been stellar while its offense simply has trouble scoring touchdowns. Yale's defense might be the weakest the Lions will face all year. If Columbia can't finish drives tonight, it may not happen this year at all.

Players to Watch

-Columbia's offense may rely heavily on freshman WR Josh Wainwright #13 and his ability to shred the generally porous Yale secondary.

-Yale's freshman RB Alan Lamar #5 almost single-handedly defeated Dartmouth three weeks ago for the Elis sole win of 2016. He's been battling some injury issues since, but could be ready to play at full tilt tonight.

-Columbia safety Landon Baty #23 has had been the top target for opposing defenses all season long. Baty has made them pay with excellent pass defense, run defense, and open field tackling. Tonight, I expect Yale to go after him anyway. Look for Baty to be in on a lot of plays where Eli QB Tre Moore tries to take off and run.

-Yale senior safety Foye Oluokun #23 is kind of like the last man standing on what was once a good defense. He'll need to step things up to do something about the massive chunk of passing yardage the Elis give up each game.

-And it goes without saying that Columbia LB Christian Conway #7 and H-back Jackson Conway #4 must be watched closely in this game. The Conway twins had their slots on the Yale football team rescinded by Eli Head Coach Tony Reno in 2012 and they had to change their commitments from Yale to Duke. After transferring to Columbia last year the Conway twins, especially Christian, slaughtered Yale's ball carriers all day in the 17-7 Lion win. 

If, Then

-If Columbia's offense sputters again, then Yale will feel more confident in spreading its offensive attack around. The Lions can't rely on just being able to shut down the Eli run attack alone.

-If Yale falls behind by more than one score early, then look for the fight to go out of this team the rest of the way. With a coach under fire and a number of key players who have left the team recently, Bulldog fortitude is at a low ebb.

-If Columbia establishes its passing attack early, then look for the Lions to shift to the run down the stretch. The Columbia offensive line has been wearing down opponents in the running lanes lately.

Joseph Leeman

UPDATE: We have a new Lion!

-I missed this earlier this season, but Columbia Football is honored to have a returning veteran now on its roster.

His name is Joseph Leeman, a 2010 graduate of New Jersey's Pompton Lakes HS, (which is not far from Wien Stadium on the other side of the George Washington Bridge).

Leeman was a Marine who once won the prestigious "Marine of the Quarter" award.

Let's welcome Joseph and all the potential athletes who can help Columbia via our excellent Yellow Ribbon program.


oldlion said...

Worst second quarter offensive performance in Columbia history. Five turnovers. Sacks of Hill galore. Dropped passes. Fumbles. Poor throws. Yale was being manhandled be our defense in the first quarter until we gift wrapped the game.

Roar Lion said...

An embarrassing performance. Game six in year two and we cannot field punts, hold onto the football, complete passes to wide open receivers or make substitutions on offense. It was a Mangurian performance by the offense, both players and coaches. I thought the difference in the game was both quarterbacks were overmatched, but Yale brought in a freshman and he played well. We just kept doing the same thing we do, which is let #12 throw one-hoppers to wide open receivers, or throw behind them. He missed Wainwright (by a mile) for an easy TD in the first quarter and never got better. I cannot believe the team spent training camp putting in a hurry up offense for a QB who cannot throw accurate short balls. He's now thrown several hundred passes in games over two seasons and has not improved. At what point do the coaches make a change? If we are going 2-8 with the worst offense in the league, why not get a freshman some reps?

Last year, we struggled because the WRs could not catch the ball. This year, the QB is just inaccurate. I am sure I will hear a retort that he threw for a bunch of yards in the fourth quarter. Yes, against Yale's freshman team. We lost to a lousy defense that gave up 35 in the first half to Penn and zero through three quarters to us. Ugh.

Big Dawg said...

Well, as we all know, the team sucked vs. Yale.
This was our game for the taking, and it looked like it in the 1st Q. Defense was pushing them all over the field. And then?????
Our bullshit offense stunk the joint up. Another crappy pass for a pick, and then a fumble for a Yale TD, and then 3 more fumbles.
After the second score, Yale got its infusion of mojo, and was all she wrote.
Forget the "furious" comeback. We were down 31 points in the last Q. Really think it was gonna happen? Our Offense handed them the game pure and simple, and until they learn how to deal with pressure, throw the ball and catch the ball, we are screwed. Thank God for the Defense, because otherwise this would look just like a Mangurian team.

Chick said...

Feels like we're living in the 1980s again.

alawicius said...

Defense plays with confidence, offense just the opposite which is why they fumble, drop passes, make mistakes, etc
12 guys on the field twice in one series?? Gimme a break. Play calling very unimaginative and predictable. OC obviously not getting it done, needs to be replaced.

Chen1982 said...

It is time to replace Hill to give one of our highly touted freshman QBs a try. At this stage of this season, we look worse than last season. This was the most beatable opponent of our last four games in my view. With this offense we are negating the potency of our defense by giving points away.

If Yale can try out a freshman QB why cant we?

DOC said...

Agree with all assessments above. Another observation: when are our WR's and DB's going to learn to turn around and find the ball
When it's thrown ? We're just not adjusting to its flight - seem out of sync. Running up the middle with Watson on first down does nothing
Would like to see something more inventive because we're very predictable and have a QB who , although a gamer , is clearly struggling right now. Some old same old...

PKNIGHT said...

Let Ferraro run the offense too!

Big Dawg said...

Disagree with Al re OC.
We're still not ready for prime time, but more because of talent than coaching. Work in progress, but we are all impatient for results. (which I see in the D line.)
I really think it is a mental/maturity issue, except for the passing. Can't blame Hill; he's a gutsy guy who can only do what he can. If we had a better passer, he'd be in there instead.
Fumbles and drops are mental problems the kids need to work on.
Unlike any other coach, I have full confidence that Bagnoli is doing the absolute best with what he has.

#1 Lion said...

To me, it all starts with the O-Line.

oldlion said...

Big Dawg is right.

Chen1982 said...

I agree with #1Lion.....our Oline is not making enough holes nor pass protecting well enough. The games i have seen, we rarely get any consistent running game going.