Monday, November 27, 2006

Murphy extension

This just in from AP ... Probably not a surprise to many ...

BOSTON (AP) — Tim Murphy was reappointed as Harvard’s football coach through 2011 on Monday after the sixth consecutive season in which he led the Crimson to at least seven wins.
Harvard won three Ivy League titles in that stretch and went unbeaten and untied twice. The Crimson finished at 7-3 this season, 4-3 in the conference, and missed a chance to tie for the Ivy championship when it lost 34-13 at home in the season finale against Yale.
Yale (8-2, 6-1) ended a five-game losing streak against Harvard and shared the title with Princeton.
Murphy, Harvard’s fourth head coach in 57 years, succeeded Joe Restic after the 1993 season. In his 13 seasons, Murphy is 80-49 and ranks second to Restic in victories.
Details of his contract were not released.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


All-Ivy is out.

McCarthy, Monaco and McLeod first team offense. Hollander and Abare first team defense.

Who left Abare off their ballot?

Will give more thorough thoughts later, but was pleased to see both Taylor Craig and Langston Johnson earn second-team honors. A lot of times guys like that get overlooked.

Here's the team

Monday, November 20, 2006

Santoro honored

A well deserved honor for Steve Santoro as Ivy League defensive player of the week.

SportsNetwork updates

Yale just missed making the Top 25 in this week's I-AA poll, receiving 120 votes. Central Arkansas, ranked 25th, received 133 votes.

Mike McLeod also just missed being named a finalist for the Walter Payton Award, given to the best offensive player in I-AA.

Yale's SID Steve Conn got a note earlier this year saying McLeod was close, but they wanted to see more with his yards per carry average. Harvard's Clifton Dawson is a finalist, as is San Diego quarterback Josh Johnson.

McLeod will be on the preseason list next year.

Brown's Zak DeOssie, a linebacker, was named a finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award, given to the best defensive player.

Jack Siedlecki is one of 16 finalists for Eddie Robinson award, given to the top coach in I-AA.
Princeton's Roger Hughes, UMass' Donald Brown and San Diego's Jim Harbaugh, were also listed.

Go to for more info.

San Diego does not get bid

San Diego did not get one of the eight at-large berths to the I-AA playoffs. See story.

Would have been interesting to see how they did against some of the stronger conferences in I-AA.

No doubt in my mind they win the Ivy League and Patriot League this year.

But they are in a I-AA mid-major conference.

Interestingly, other than Montana and Montana State, the other 14 teams are on the Eastern half of the U.S.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Pure class

Just need to mention that Harvard coach Tim Murphy is probably as classy a coach as I've dealt with in 15 years.

Whether he wins or loses he just carries himself in manner more coaches should follow.

The way he took Saturday's loss was professionalism at its best. He was mad and disappointed, but never complained, just credited Yale.

His players were the same way.

Often after losses players whine and complain, look disgusted, don't pay attention, keep their heads in their hands. Each of his players Saturday spoke confidently, gave credit to Yale and watched their coach as he spoke. And he did the same.

Pure class.

Friday, November 17, 2006

More on JV

From Sam Rubin ....

Harvard scored the final 35 points of the game, including 28 in the fourth quarter, to defeat Yale 62-29 in The JV Game Friday afternoon at Harvard Stadium.

The Bulldog offense was plagued by six turnovers, including four interceptions, negating the five turnovers produced by the Yale defense. After the Crimson scored on its first two possessions, the Bulldogs began battling back.

A fumble forced by sophomore linebacker Matt Plummer and recovered by sophomore defensive lineman Uthman Arogundade at the Yale 31 set up the Bulldogs' first scoring drive.

The Bulldogs executed a pretty play action fake on fourth-and-three at the Yale 39 -- the Harvard crowd even cheered when they thought the Bulldog runner had been brought down in the backfield -- to get an 11-yard completion from sophomore quarterback Joe Dennison to junior tight end Jordan Stevens. Dennison had come on when freshman quarterback Richie Scudellari was injured on Yale's second series. Two plays after the fourth-down conversion Dennison lofted one down the left sideline and into the arms of freshman wide receiver Reid Lathan, who took off for a 51-yard touchdown.

The Bulldogs got right back in the end zone when freshman defensive back Eric Senn returned a blocked punt for a touchdown shortly after the start of the second quarter. Sophomore holder Patrick Sedden turned a botched extra point attempt into a two-point conversion, running the ball in for a 15-14 Yale lead.

The Crimson scored twice in a span of 32 seconds later in the quarter to go back in front, including an interception return for a touchdown.

Yale made the most of its final drive of the half, though, including a 16-yard reception by Lathan that converted a third-and-10 and helped the Bulldogs get to the 14-yard line. Facing fourth down from there Dennison found freshman wide receiver John Sheffield, who fought through an attempted tackle to get into the end zone and bring Yale within 27-22 at halftime.

Senn intercepted Harvard's first pass of the second half, and two plays after that Dennison connected with Sheffield for a touchdown from 39 yards out.

The Bulldogs took a 29-27 lead.

That lead held up until 3:27 remained in the third quarter, when a touchdown gave Harvard a 34-29 lead. The Crimson's next drive got to the Yale 25 before junior defensive back Matthew Jacques ended it with an interception on the second play of the fourth quarter. The rest of that quarter was all Harvard. The Crimson scoring plays included a 90-yard run, a four-yard run set up by an interception deep in Yale territory, a five-yard pass set up by a fumble deep in Yale territory, and a fumble recovery in the end zone. Harvard's four touchdowns came in a span of just over five minutes.

Harvard wins JV game

Harvard pulled away for a 62-29 win over Yale in JV.

Yale quarterback Richie Scudellari broke his wrist in the first quarter.

Joe Dennison followed, but was also banged up.

Matt Kelleher has been slowed by back problems the entire year.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Some Yale Princeton notes

The focus quickly will shift to The Game.

Yale’s stinging 34-31 loss to Princeton made its road to its first Ivy League title since 1999 a bit more difficult, but by no means did it throw up a complete roadblock.

Yale coach Jack Siedlecki and players knew they could only allow the pain of Saturday’s loss linger so long, before preparing for the final game of the season at Harvard.

“There’s no question we’re pretty down right now,” Siedlecki said. “But we’re still in first place, although we’re not acting like it. We’ve got to start acting like it (today). We need to make our corrections from the film, we’ve got to make a great game plan for Harvard, have a great week of practice and go up there and win a football game and be Ivy League champs. They have a few hours to feel sorry for ourselves, then we need to move on, because no one else is going to feel sorry for us.”

Yale has lost five straight games to Harvard, which fell one game behind Princeton and Yale with a 22-13 loss at Penn.

“We’ve got to just focus on Harvard now because there is nothing we can do now about this result,” senior linebacker Chris Barry said.

Yale was picked to finish fifth in the Ivy League, so the opportunity to play for an Ivy title is a welcomed one.

“If someone had said at the beginning of the season you’re going to have the chance to win an Ivy League championship playing at Harvard, I would have taken that in a second,” McCarthy said. “Honestly, if you have to lose one of those games, you don’t want to beat Princeton, then lose to Harvard, that would make it bittersweet. To go up there and beat Harvard would make it all that much better.”


Games like Yale-Harvard and Yale-Princeton have been known for their pranks over the years, but Saturday’s display was downright vandalism.

Between Friday and Saturday, people broke into the Bowl and spray-painted about 40 rows of Yale’s recently renovated benches orange.

The paint job did not completely cover the benches in orange, rather after being washed off just leaving streaks of orange throughout. An investigation has begun. The paint jobs were just completed on the seats last month and were expected to last for up to five years. Now Yale needs to work with the contractors to have those areas below the pressbox redone.


It was announced at Yale’s alumni association meeting that the university hopes to have Phase II of the Yale Bowl restoration project completed by the Harvard game next season.

Phase II includes the Jensen Family Plaza entrance near Central Avenue, the Kenney Family Field Center, which would include a halftime room and skyboxes, and a new and a video scoreboard that will be located above the end zone on the opposite side of the present scoreboard.


This game was filled with crazy plays.

Princeton pulled to within 14-7 on a strange play as Yale forced a fumble after Terrell advance to the 13-yard line. The ball squirted loose. There was a pileup and an alert Adam Berry scooped the ball up and ran in for a touchdown with 8:18 left in the second quarter.

Late in the second half, the Princeton offensive line was called for offside. Not one player. The call actually said the entire offensive line jumped offside.

Princeton had an incomplete pass bounce off the umpire.


Princeton will hold a bonfire Thursday evening on campus to celebrate its sweep of Yale and Harvard. It’s a tradition to hold a bonfire for such a sweep, but it has not happened since 1994.


Yale’s crowd of 43,406 was the largest at a college football game in the state this year.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

New York Times article

Trenton Times story

Craig Haley always does a good job.

Here's his story

Video coverage

of Yale Princeton game at

Some game highlights from Register videographer and postgame interviews.

First try for us, but went ok.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

sea of orange

on the field right now

almost over

Princeton just has to kneel

Game over

First down pass from Terrell to Circle, right on sideline in front of Siedlecki.

Princeton deep score plus 2, up 34-31

Brian Brigham catches 57 yard pass from Terrell down left sideline. Wide open.

Two-point conversion

Low bullet from Terrell to Circle.

376 yards passing for Terrell. First time Tiger QB over 300 since 1985 according to press booth.

Momentum definitely shifted.

1 play
57 pass

Princton TD, 2-point pass failed 31-26 Yale

Terrell finds Circle in back of end zone for 8-yard touchdown.

Goes for two

Hollander all over Terrell's leg. Terrell throws away


FG Kimball. Yale 31, Princeton 20

Kimball kicks 20 yard field goal for Yale.

Hawari interception

Was just writing Yale need to stay aggressive on defense.

Kyle Hawari breaks through line, Terrell looks to right, passes, Hawari knocks the ball straight into air, intercepts pass.

First down at Princeton 21 for Yale

Princeton scores. Yale 28-20

Princeton touchdown.

Gorgeous pass from Terrell to Circle in the left side of the end zone, cross field. Wide open. 15-yard touchdown

Weird play. Snap looked fine. Might have been mishandled. Chris Lee hops up, looks to throw, tackled by Casey Gerald. Could be costly.

7 plays 41 yards 2:52

Princeton threatens again

Tigers at the Yale 10

First and goal. 2:09 left third quarter.

Great punt

McDonough just put Yale back to the five with a booming kick that darted down the left sideline and out of bounds.


Incomplete Terrell pass off the umpires back

Hollander huge sack

Brandt Hollander just sacked Terrell for 11-yard loss on 4th and 14 play.

Yale gets second sideline warning of game.

Siedlecki not thrilled.

Princeton driving

This game will go to wire.

Princeton at Yale 19.

Yale's Paul Rice almost had a pickoff on goaline.

halftime stats

McLeod 4 TDs 17 carries 151 yards
Polhemus 7 carries 74 yards
Murray 8 carries 61 yards

Terrell 4 carries 22 yards
Toresco 3 carries 12 yards
Foran 1 carry -2
Lagomarsino 2 carries -8

Yale 4-7 69 yards

Terrell 15-21 192 yards
Foran 1-1 1

Henley 2-48
Drake 2-21

Circle 5-86
Brigham 4-53
Toresco 3-32
Shields 2-17

Yale 4 of 5 on 3rd down
Princeton 1 of 4 on 3rd down

Teams combined 6 of 7 on red zone chances. Yale missed a 36-yard field goal.

Yale did not punt in first half.

need a break, will be on WELI soon

Need to catch my breath.

Will be on radio with Ron and Carm in a few minutes.

What a half.

Guess what? Princeton's driving but half ends ..

Brian Brigham just missed a diving touchdown catch, right off finger tips, completely outstretched down left sideline. Great effort, just missed

6 seconds left

Princeton has ball at Yale 34

Princeton drive helped by personal foul against Casey Gerald, who put a hit on Brendan Circle on an incomplete pass.

Princeton arguing last play of half Brigham got out of bounds with time left.

Officials disagree.



Good crowd.

Getting their moneys worth.

McLeod 4th TD, sets record, Yale up 28-14

McLeod is unbelievable today, scores fourth touchdown, from 6 yards out to put Yale up 28-14 with 1:09 left in half.

He sets a Yale record with 17th overall TD and ties Pagliaro's rushing record of 16 set by Pags in 1976.

Drive was 6 plays, 69 yards.

Chandler Henley had a big catch and run to keep drive going.

Princeton TD 21-14 Yale leads

Holy Scoring Spree Batman!

Princeton drives 67 yards on five plays, capped by a 6-yard touchdown run by Jeff Terrell, who made a great head fake on Yale CB Casey Gerald. Faked his head inside, and just studder-stepped to the outside for an easy walk-in touchdown.

This game isn't giving anyone time to breathe, let alone type.

Bowl must have near 40,000.

Good Princeton showing in their bright orange shirts across the way.

Great atmosphere, great game. Hopefully you are here and not stuck reading this.

McLeod touchdown Yale 21-7

McLeod scores third touchdown from 3 yards out, 15th of season. 5:03 left.

9 plays 78, 3:10

He needs one to tie Pagliaro record of 16 rushing touchdowns in a season. But because he has a touchdown catch as well this year, he ties the overall mark of Pagliaro's.

TD Princeton 14-7 Yale leads


Terrell fumbles after gaining seven yards. There's a pile up. Princeton sophomore Adam Berry picks it up and runs in from 13 yards out untouched.

Wacky play.

5 plays, 68 yards, 2:15 for scoring drive.

This is Princeton's first touchdown at Yale Bowl since 2000.

Kick good, but a flag down.

95 personal foul for Yale. Second PF for Bulldogs. +15 on kickoff.

Princeton driving again

Princeton down to Yale 20.

TD McLeod. Yale 14-0

Mike McLeod touchdown run of 13 yards.

Kimball kick is good.

Yale leads 14-0

Now two shy of season record of 16 by Pagliaro.

McLeod +46

McLeod down left sideline for 46 yard gain to the Princeton 15.

Strickland makes TD saving tackle. Got up a bit slow and looked like he might have turned an ankle.

He's still in game though

4th and 15

from the 39, Terrell, a little pressure, incomplete to middle of field.

Yale first and 10 from 39.

Terrell sacked

Stephen Schmalhofer sacks Terrell back to 50.

Terrell keeper

Jeff Terrell 14 yard gain to Yale 42

Princeton driving

Princeton at its own 42 thanks to a 15-yard facemask call against Yale

Touchdown Bulldogs 99 YARD DRIVE

McLeod from 1-yard out between tackles for TD, his 13th of year, three shy of John Pagliaro record.

Kimball kick.

That was a 99-yard drive.


Great catch followed by Murray run

Great catch by sophomore Jarret Drake, diving to left sideline on out pattern. Yale coaches love this kid. Remember his name.

Then senior Matt Murray breaks a 32 yard run to the 3. Broke through a huge hole.

McLeod down to 1

McLeod + 17

Draw play. Know it's coming. But Princeton still unable to stop McLeod, who is running with power.

21 yard gain

Polhemus to Henley on left sideline.

1st down yale

McLeod goes 8 yards on second down to the left side for a first down.

Princeton downs punt at 1

Great kick by Colin McDonough.

Yale first and 10 at its own 1

Kimball wide left

Yale unable to take advantage of late hit that gave the Bulldogs first and 10 at 17.

Alan Kimball misses 36 yard field goal wide left.

BIG HIT by Brendan Sponheimer on first play of ensuing drive however.

Can't leave any points on the field this game

Class Act

Yale coach Jack Siedlecki had all seniors introduced prior to the start of the game, a tradition at most schools, but not something done here for quite some time.

A great thing to see.

This class deserves a lot of credit.

Crandall and Dale out

Both Brett Crandall at left guard and Darius Dale at right tackle will not play today because of injury. Crandall still not cleared from concussion suffered againt Penn.

LG Jeff Monaco
RG Basserman
RT Tom Woznicki

Yale stops Princeton on first series

Great run back by Princeton's Bill Foran to Tiger 48.

But Princeton fumbled, regained possession, had an incompletion and then Yale put pressure on Foran with a Barry tackle for loss.

setting the scene

Always a good feeling coming down Route 34 and being stuck in traffic.

Good crowd.

Bowl should look great today, with Yale side pretty filled.

But someone got in to the Bowl last night and painted the bleachers on the Yale side below the press box with orange spray paint.

Probably about 40 rows.

Not fully orange, more of a sloppy covering.

Yale will investigate.

I am sure some Deans will be talking to each other.

Too bad.

Special Papers at Bowl

Check out the Register's two-page special wrap on the Yale-Princeton game, available for purchase today at the Bowl.

I'm allowed one shameless plug a year.

Should be by the Central Avenue entrance.

Friday, November 10, 2006

video streaming for Princeton game

Yale will announce later today on its website that it will attempt a live video stream for the first time of the Yale-Princeton football game.

Go to for more info.

It's going to be a one-camera view, from the coaches box below the pressbox. There are bound to be some snafus, but great job by Yale getting this to work, considering no TV for this game.

YES is kicking itself on this one.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Yale SID Steve Conn got a call this morning from Lee Corso letting him know the Yale-Princeton game just missed being selected for ESPN GameDay.

Arkansas' win last week made the SEC matchup between the Razorbacks and Tennessee too good to pass up. Tennessee is ranked 13th, Arkansas 11th.

But Yale will get some love, with an ESPN crew coming down Wednesday to film practice. Chandler Henley will have a microphone on for the segment. Let's hope they take some footage of the Bowl to show how good it looks now.

There is no TV for this game. What a shame.

Yale-Harvard was almost aired on ESPN GameDay last year as well.

With Ohio State-Michigan next week, there isn't another game in the country that has a shot, including The Game.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Game Story from Brown-Yale

Register Yale game story

Yale Brown game notes

Yale’s young secondary wasn’t perfect Saturday, but it sure made enough plays to help the Bulldogs defeated Brown 27-24.

The Bulldogs defensive line put plenty of pressure on Brown quarterback Joe DiGiacomo, the Ivy League’s leading passer, and intercepted DiGiacomo four times.

Linebacker Bobby Abare had three of the interceptions. Sophomore Casey Gerald knocked away a ball intended for Brown’s receiver Lonnie Hill in the right side of the end zone with 1:51 left.

Three plays later Brown kicker Steve Morgan missed a 50-yard field goal attempt to the right.

Freshman Paul Rice had Yale’s first interception in the first quarter and also knocked down a pass intended for junior Paul Raymond with just under 7 minutes left in the game. Brown faced third-and-8 from its own 37 and DiGiacommo rolled right and threw to what appeared to be an open Raymond at the Yale 20. But Rice made a good read and knocked the ball away, forcing Brown to punt. Yale then drove for the winning touchdown.

“They did a really good job, and it was important for them to step up because their quarterback was coming in after throwing for almost 350 yards last week,” said junior nose guard Brandt Hollander, who had a sack. “They did a great job of covering.”

Hill had just two catches for 74, both big gainers, one for a 32-yard touchdown, the other for a 42-yard gain. DiGiacomo was 8 for 16 for 134 yards. He was averaging 240.4 yards per game. At one point early, DiGiacomo was 2 for 6 with three interceptions.

“It just wasn’t a good day for him,” Brown coach Phil Estes said. “I could see it early in his eyes.”

Sophomore defensive tackleJoe Hathaway had a sack and Jared Hamilton and Kirk Porter had tackles for losses. Brendan Sponheimer and Larry Abare also combined for a stop behind the line of scrimmage.


Yale coach Jack Siedlecki never considered going for a first down on fourth-and 6 with 8:03 left and the Bulldogs trailing 24-17. Instead he sent in Alan Kimball for a 23-yard field goal.

“The defense was just playing well,” Siedlecki said. “We knew we were going to have to score twice and we needed to take the points. You could go for it, but it’s not a high percentage play. There’s a chance you won’t get the ball back, but you can’t play that way. You need to play with confidence in your team, confidence in your players.”

Brown ran three plays before punting back to Yale.


Yale sophomore Mike McLeod moved into seventh place on Yale’s single-season rushing chart, reaching 1,096 in his eighth game. He also tied Rich Diana (1981), Chris Kouri (1991) and Rashad Bartholomew (2000) for single-season 100-yard rushing games with his seventh.

“The whole offensive line has been great, led by All-American Ed McCarthy,” McLeod said. “But Darius (Dale) has gone down and someone else steps up for him. Brett Crandall wasn’t able to play, and we just get someone else and I still get holes I can run through. (Fullback) Taylor Craig has been great. The wide receivers have thrown blocks to spring me. I owe credit to the whole offense.”


“We’ve got weapons and we’re just going to keep getting them the ball,” Jack Siedlecki.


-- Senior left guard Brett Crandall did not play. He suffered a concussion against Columbia and was not cleared to play.

-- Sophomore right tackle Darius Dale played for the first time in two weeks. He left the game with 8:26 left, but it was more a pain resistance issue with his past injury.

-- Edward Decker had four interceptions against Dartmouth in 1927 to set the Yale single-game record.

-- Yale punter Tom Mante had six punts, his busiest day this season. He had just 24 all year. Mante averaged 35 yards and put four inside the 20, including one he shanked that rolled an additional 20-plus yards.

Providence story

Providence Journal story.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Mike McLeod feature

Here's the link

Friday, November 03, 2006

A Celebration of Yale Football: Past, Present, Future

This was on Yale's web site ...

Live from Mory'sTues., Nov. 7, 7:00 p.m. (Princeton Week)

Tues., Nov. 14, 7:00 p.m. (Harvard Week)

Mory's hosts an Internet-streamed broadcast anchored by the play-by-play voice of Yale Football, Ron Vaccaro '04. The program will feature interviews with current and former players and coaches and a preview of the game later that week. What better way to start gearing up for game week? If you are a Mory's member, call for reservations at 562-3157 right away!
To listen to the broadcast, visit:

Select the Football heading and then just click on the continue link to hear the audio.

Some scenarios

-- If Yale loses at Brown, it still can win the outright title with wins against Princeton and Harvard.

-- If Penn beats Princeton and Columbia pulls the upset of all upsets and beats Harvard, Yale would clinch a tie of the Ivy League title with a win at Brown Saturday.

-- Here's a crazy scenario, but possible. Yale beats Brown, then beats Princeton in a 12:30 game Nov. 11. Penn beats Harvard in 1 p.m. game the same day. Yale loses at Harvard the 18th, still wins the outright title, but never gets to celebrate on the field.

-- Technically five teams still have a chance to win league: Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Penn and Brown.

Not satisfied

Word came into the pressroom quickly Saturday that the Princeton football team had lost to Cornell 14-7.

Princeton had lost for the first time this season, and Yale was alone in first place in the Ivy League for the first time since 1989.

Not even the hint of a smile from the players in the interview room. There’s still a lot to be accomplished.

"The way I look at it, it doesn’t mean anything until the end of the season," said sophomore linebacker Bobby Abare, who returned an interception 52 yards for a touchdown late in the third quarter to lead the Bulldogs to a 21-3 win over Columbia. "You can be in first place all season all you want, but then to not be there at the end, it doesn’t mean anything."

Yale is 4-0 in the league. Harvard and Princeton are 3-1. Yale still has to play both, but it first travels to Brown, a team that has won seven of its last nine meetings with the Bulldogs.

"It doesn’t mean a helluva lot until the end of the season," Yale coach Jack Siedlecki said. "Princeton just got beat by an 0-3 team (in league). That’s the reality of the Ivy League. We’ve got to get ready to go and play a great football game at Brown next week."

The Bulldogs are 6-1 and have won six straight, all games that were in some question in the fourth quarter. During the streak, Yale has won two games in overtime, defeating Lehigh and Penn in back-to-back weeks.

Saturday’s 18-point win over Columbia was the Bulldogs’ largest margin of victory, but Yale did not dominate, by any means.

"We need a great week of practice this week. We need to get a lot better, because I don’t think we’ve reached our potential yet as an offense," offensive tackle Ed McCarthy said. "I think we can be a very high-powered offense once we really clean things up, so I am really excited about that.
"I think teams will be looking to knock us off, like we did to Princeton last year," McCarthy said.

"We’ve got a huge bull’s eye now. It will be a big challenge for us"
Siedlecki has been impressed with the leadership of his seniors in these situations.

"I think the biggest difference in him is that he’s become a vocal leader," Siedlecki said about McCarthy. "He was a quiet guy the first three years. He’s one of the guys I think has surprised some kids on the team with how vocal he is. I think just showing how important it is to him. That’s important. These younger guys see how much it means to him."

Yale Brown notes


The Yale football team has become pretty comfortable taking long Saturday afternoon drives. Scoring drives, mind you.
The Bulldogs have scoring drives of 80 or more yards in four of their last five games, with a 79-yard scoring drive against Dartmouth. Yale has seven drives of 75 or more yards in the past six games, all wins for the Ivy League-leading Bulldogs (6-1, 4-0).
Yale put together two impressive drives in a 21-3 win over Columbia, marching 97 yards on 11 plays for its first score, then taking 10 minutes, 30 seconds on its final scoring drive, a 17-play, 84-yard drive.
"I think a lot of it has to do with our ability to run the football," Yale coach Jack Siedlecki said. "We’ve had some really good tailbacks here, but we’ve never had a tailback who we’ve given the ball to this many times."
Yale sophomore running back Mike McLeod is fourth in I-AA, averaging 141.71 yards per game. He has 992 yards on 207 carries. Per game, the Bulldogs are averaging 42 carries and 201.7 yards — which is 4.7 yards per carry.
"We’ve gotten into a situation where it could be third-and-5 and we’ll run it as well as pass, when in the past we would not have run it. As we wear on you … it says something about you physically. It might not be that way in the beginning, but when you’ve run 60 or 65 offensive plays, and had those guys leaning on you all that time, that gets tough, and allows those drives to be so long at the end of the game.
"It just makes such a difference being able to drive the football on the ground," Siedlecki said. "It also allows you to open up the short passing game, and that enables you to keep drives going."
Yale will need to keep drives going Saturday when it travels to face Brown. The Bears lead the Ivy League in passing yards (256.9 yards per game) and is second in total offense (359.7 yards).


A closer look at some long scoring drives for the Yale football team this year:

Columbia 11 plays 97 yards
17 plays 84 yards

Penn 10 plays 80 yards

Lehigh 9 plays 80 yards

Dartmouth 14 plays 79 yards

Lafayette 4 plays 76 yards
8 plays 81 yards

Note: Yale has an additional nine scoring drives of 60-or-more yards this season.


Freshman punter Tom Mante has come on strong of late after a slow start.
Mante averaged 40.5 yards per kick Saturday on four punts against Columbia, a vast improvement from the opener against San Diego, where Mante averaged just 28.6 yards on five punts.
"Tom Mante is a good punter," Siedlecki said. "He’s got a powerful leg. He’s a good placekicker too, but we didn’t want to put that pressure on him as well. We told him when we were recruiting him that we expected him to come in and be the punter. He came here ready to go. But he’s a freshman and he had nerves and a few issues."
Mante had four punts of fewer than 30 yards earlier this season: 29, 22, 17 and 14. Four of his past six punts have been 40 or more yards, including a 58-yarder against Penn.
"But these last few games he’s become the punter we expected," Siedlecki said. "He’s more mature and doing a great job. He can do all the little things. We’ve never really had a punter that can do the sky kick and put it down inside the 5 yard line. He has that ability and you’ll see that more."
Eight of Mante’s 24 punts have landed inside the 20 and six have been fair caught.
"I think it became clear at the first day of practice how valuable he was going to be to our team," Kimball said. "Anyone who has spent time around our practice and team knows he has an incredibly strong leg. He’s a freshman and he had some early-season struggles, but in recent games he’s done a lot of things to really help us win."
"He doesn’t qualify for the national statistics because he doesn’t punt enough. We’d like to keep it that way. That means we’re playing pretty well on offense. You need to average 3½ punts a game. He’s not there yet."