Some thoughts following Colgate's 19-0 win over
1. Great Is The Enemy Of Good: There are many reasons to be disappointed about Saturday's outcome, and I suspect there are more of these ahead of the Hoyas this season. But let's put this team into some perspective: it is thin in depth, it is running a new offense, replacing many of its skill positions, and has an undeserved reputation as a place where kids that couldn't get a scholarship ended up at.
Playing 60 minutes of football, the kind of well prepared, well coached, and well executed effort that led the Hoyas over Brown, can and will pay dividends down the road, even if the road takes a few unforeseen turns.
"We had 12 possessions in the game. In 11 of these drives we had an unforced error.," wrote coach Sgarlata in his weekly e-mail to the Gridiron Club. Did those 11 unforced errors cost the Hoyas the game? In its entirety, probably not, but if 11 unforced errors can become eight, six or four, suddenly this is a more competitive team in the Colgate game, in the Lehigh game, in the Fordham, game, and in the recruiting game.
2. TV Coverage: When word that something called the American Sports Network was going to broadcast select games this season, I was a little skeptical, along the lines of that ill-fated FiOS contract that is still the stuff of derision in
circles. (A long
story for another time.) Lafayette
Skepticism no more--the effort in Saturday's game was first rate, and the opportunity to watch it on TV and not a PC was a decided step up for fans nationwide who don't have the luxury of getting up a couple hours early and driving to
Credit to the production team and to the assistance at Colgate to give Patriot
league football some national attention.
3. A Word From Our Sponsor: The successful broadcast of the game on ASN does not excuse, however, the line crossed by analyst Ross Tucker.
Tucker, a former
lineman who played parts of seven pro seasons across five different teams, is
listed on his web site as a "Princeton All-American, NFL offensive lineman,
media personality, motivational speaker,
and entrepreneur." (All-American really means academic All-American, but I
Amidst his various gigs for ASN, NBC Sports Network , YES, the Sporting News, and Sirius XM, Tucker owns a high school recruiting service called Go Big Recruiting.
"Hundreds of college coaching staffs specifically mention Go Big Recruiting as a preferred method of receiving profiles and videos," reads its web site. "Go Big was founded by a former All-Ivy player at Princeton University and 7-year NFL veteran [Ross Tucker], and a serial entrepreneur with online video expertise."
That's fine, I'd guess, though if Brent Musburger was running his own recruiting service while announcing football games, someone might be asking some questions.
The problem is not that Tucker has this job, but during Saturday's game he mentioned his work with Go Big not once, not twice, but three times in the broadcast. That's not an aside, that's unpaid advertising.
Tucker specifically mentioned Georgetown recruits as having used his service, and a web site called Recruiting 101 goes so far as to claim that "Syracuse, Princeton, Baylor and Georgetown are just some of the universities that have exclusively mentioned Go Big Recruiting.com in their mailings to recruits as the online way to submit game film to their university."
Lots of television analysts have off-season jobs. When he's not trying on headgear for College Gameday, ESPN's Lee Corso was a sales rep for a pencil manufacturer. Aside from a pencil in his hand during the broadcasts, nothing is said about it. Jay Bilas is an attorney when basketball doesn't get in the way, but he's not offering a 1-800 number during time outs. The always entertaining Bill Raftery owns something called "W.J. Raftery Associates", an event marketing firm. He doesn't talk up a side business during a broadcast.
And neither should Ross Tucker.
4. Goin' South: We'll discuss this on HoyaSaxa.com later this week, but Harvard's trip to
is a bit of a rarity in the long tradition of Crimson football.
Harvard has played a total of 1,274 intercollegiate games across its august history, and just 12 of them...twelve...were played outside of the Ivy league footprint, roughly from Pennsylvania North to
New Hampshire. Of these,
just four were played south of the Mason-Dixon line
November 11, 1947 at
November 7, 1981: at William & Mary
October 4, 1986: at William & Mary
September 25, 1993: at William & Mary
Other true road games for the Cantabs included the 1920 Rose Bowl versus Oregon, a pair of games with Michigan prior to 1942, an ancient series with Navy, and a 2013 trip to San Diego, but that's it.
So, in addition to being the last team left in the
Georgetown fight song yet
to play the Hoyas, Harvard is making
some history in sending the Crimson southbound this weekend.
5. Still Counting: Tuesday marked day 3,300 of the "temporary" suspension of construction at unnamed Multi-Sport Field.
No rant today, just a quote: "Some have forgotten, others will remind them."