Monday, November 14, 2016

Shootout Victims

Cornell 42 Columbia 40

Why Cornell Won

The Big Red offensive line dominated the line of scrimmage on pass plays and produced 259 yards rushing to boot. A Columbia team that netted five sacks against Harvard the week before produced no sacks this against Cornell. The Big Red defense forced three turnovers to seal the deal.

Why Columbia Lost

The Lions defense played its worst game since the loss to Princeton, never getting pressure on Cornell QB Dalton Banks and suffering inexplicable breakdowns on some of the most crucial short yardage running situations in the game. A number of dubious calls, including one that negated a Columbia TD, did not help. The Lions finished with 11 penalties for a galling 156 yards.

Key Turning Points 

-With Columbia leading 14-7 and about four minutes left in the 1st quarter, the Lions were driving to another score when Alan Watson crossed the goal line with the ball which sprung out of his hands when he hit the ground in the end zone. The ground cannot cause a fumble, and the play should have been called a TD, but the refs gave the ball to Cornell. Three plays later, Cornell tied it up at 14-14.

-Leading Columbia by 28-27 just before the end of the 3rd quarter, the Big Red began a drive at their own 15. They promptly converted three 3rd downs and one 4th down on a 15 play drive that ended with a TD. The Lions were playing against Cornell, the Big Red, and the clock after that.

Columbia Positives

-The Lion offense finally broke out and played an impressive game for most of the contest's 60 minutes. Alan Watson ran for over 100 yards. Freshman WR Ronald Smith had 11 catches for 195 yards. Both QB's collectively completed better than 60% of their passes.

-PK Oren Millstein continued to show his worth with a 44 yard FG to end the 1st half and a 37-yarder later in the game.

-Every single point in the game for Columbia was scored by a freshman, boding well for the future.

Columbia Negatives

-Columbia's corners were both abused with regularity after playing well all season. Something went haywire at the worst time.

-The no sacks at all and no real pressure were a bad surprise.

Columbia MVP

-WR Ronald Smith had a monster game where he showed a signature move of moving back inside after the catch to get more yards. He had an incredible day. He has since been named Ivy League Rookie of the Week.


msgCC'60 said...

Appears as if we're headed for another 2-8 season (don't have high hopes for a W vs. Brown). Once again, too many penalties, turnovers, missed opportunities and other assorted mistakes. Still hopeful AB can turn the program around with more W's next year.

DOC said...

Wasn't clear to me whether Watson's carry crossed the goal line.
He seemed to be reaching forward but the TV angle was behind the play.
Jake, did you have a better angle ?
Nice to see the Freshmen step up even though it was a losing effort.

oldlion said...

Al would not have gone off the way he did unless he was pretty sure that it was an atrocious call of the sort that would never have gone against a H, Y or P in playing another Ivy. The refs in our league are really pretty bad. But to the basic point, we still gave this game away with a couple of inexplicable third down lapses. And Hill's first play pretty much sums up the problem with his game; he has a cannon of an arm on the long ball,is tough as nails, but makes some awful and infuriating turnovers.

Roar Lion said...

I was unhappy about the game until I read Al's summary, in which he noted how much he's appreciated the seniors, who were dealt a miserable hand and never quit and have put the program on more competitive footing. No question we've improved a lot from two years ago. Still, I find it alarming the number of dumb mistakes we make, physical and especially mental. I think Cornell took bigger strides forward this year than we did.