Photos courtesy of Columbia Sports Information/Media
Relations, Cornell Athletic Communications and Penn Athletic
PRINCETON, N.J. -- Just like a suspenseful novel, the 2012 Ivy League football season is shaping up for a thrilling conclusion as the pages of this season turn to its final month.
Three of last Saturday's games came down to the wire with two decided on last-minute field goals and another won on a late touchdown in a game that featured 72 points scored.
The Week 8 schedule offers similar drama with teams with identical Ivy League records squaring off. I-95 rivals Penn and Princeton, each sitting at 3-1 in League play, are pitted against each other at Powers Field on ESPN3. With mirroring records of 4-3 overall and 2-2 in Ivy play, Dartmouth and Cornell clash at Schoellkopf Field looking to keep pace in the Ivy title race. Yale and Brown, both at 1-3 in the League and coming off last-second losses, meet on the YES Network with one team aiming to get back into the win column. Harvard, tied atop the standings with Princeton and Penn, hopes to keep its winning ways going at home against Columbia.
"Inside Ivy League Football," hosted by Dan
Loney and Brian Seltzer, hits on
Halloween at 7 p.m. for its eighth episode.
"Inside Ivy League Football" is a weekly online radio show that takes an in-depth look at all the on-field gridiron action and all the news and notes surrounding football in the Ancient Eight. The 10-episode show airs Wednesdays at 7 p.m. on BlogTalkRadio.com (blogtalkradio.com/insideivyleaguefootball) and is available on-demand via BlogTalkRadio and IvyLeagueSports.com.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Cornell junior quarterback Jeff Mathews (Camarillo, Calif.) continued his record-setting ways with 525 yards, on 35-of-51 passing, and four touchdowns without a turnover to help the Big Red top Princeton 37-35 with a last-minute scoring drive. Mathews' single-game yardage ranks second at Cornell and third in Ivy League history. He set up John Wells' game-winning, 23-yard field goal with under a minute by driving Cornell 66 yards after receiving the ball with two minutes to play. He converted a pair of third-down chances and connected with Grant Gellatly for 35 yards to bring the Big Red down to the 11-yard line with under 90 seconds to play.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Columbia senior linebacker Mike Waller (Wayne, N.J.) led a disruptive defensive effort that included four fumbles and a safety in the Lions' first Ivy League win of the season and first win over Yale in 11 years. Waller was responsible for forcing two fumbles, including one late in the fourth quarter to set up the game-winning touchdown drive. He stripped Tyler Varga to give the Lions the ball at their own 41-yard line with 2:05. Columbia's offense took over and marched 59 yards in 1:20 to take the 26-22 lead with 45 seconds remaining. Waller finished the game with seven tackles (two solo).
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Penn sophomore placekicker Connor Loftus (Villa Park, Calif.) connected on two field goals in the final 2:12 of play to push the Quakers to a 20-17 victory over Brown. Loftus booted a career-long, 45-yard field goal to tie the game at 17-17. He drilled a 30-yarder with 17 seconds left to steal the win in front of the Franklin Field faithful. Loftus also connected on both of his extra point attempts.
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Cornell freshman running back Luke Hagy (Pittsburgh) posted another solid effort, recording 95 all-purpose yards and scoring his first career receiving touchdown in the Big Red's 37-35 win over Ivy unbeaten Princeton. Hagy led the team with a game-high 58 rushing yards on 14 carries and caught three passes for 37 yards, including a 23-yard touchdown midway through the third quarter.
Sean Brackett, Columbia (Sr., QB - Brooklyn, Conn.)
33-47-1, 328 yds., 2 TDs
A.J. Cruz, Brown (Sr., DB - Lake Forest,
9 tkls. (8 solo), 1 BrUp
Brian Gee, Cornell (Jr., FS - Atlanta)
8 tkls. (4 solo), 1.0 TFL, 2 FF, 1 BrUp
Zach Hodges, Harvard (So., DE - Atlanta)
4 tkls. (4 solo), 2.0 TFL, 2 sacks, 5 QBH
Tellef Lundevall, Brown (Sr., WR - Highland
17 rec. for 170 yds., 1 TD
Connor Michelsen, Princeton (So., QB - Plano,
29-35-2, 390 yds., 1 TD
Alex Park, Dartmouth (So., QB - Upper St.
23-38-1, 304 yds., 2 TDs
Billy Ragone, Penn (Sr., QB - Chesire,
13-22-1, 165 yds., 2 TDs, 46 rush yds.
Michael Reilly, Dartmouth (Sr., WR -
12 rec. for 165 yds., 1 TD
Michael Runger, Dartmouth (Jr., LB - Lisle,
3 tkls. (4 solo), 1 FF
Treavor Scales, Harvard (Sr., RB - Stone
21 car. for 89 yds., 3 TDs
Tyler Varga, Yale (So., RB - Kitchener,
25 car. for 220 yds., 3 TDs, 18 pass yds.
John Wells, Cornell, Jr., PK (Paradise Valley, Ariz.)
23-yd., game-winning FG, 4 XPM
Roman Wilson, Princeton (Jr., WR - Broken
6 rec. for 162 yds., 1 TD, 1 rush TD
Saturday, November 3
*Yale at Brown, 12:30 pm [YES]
*Dartmouth at Cornell, 12:30 pm
*Columbia at Harvard, 1 pm
*Penn at Princeton, 1 pm [ESPN3]
*Ivy League Contests
KEY: ESPN3 – ESPN3.com; YES – YES Network (DirecTV 631)