No matter when the game is played, when Lafayette and Lehigh get together on the gridiron, it almost always seems to be close and come down to a few plays.
This April, the same weekend as The Masters, Lehigh and Lafayette will be playing the first-ever Rivalry football game in the spring, a most atypical 156th meeting in the most-played college football game that’s simply called “The Rivalry”.
When you look at it in terms of the development of this team – and how this leads into next fall – there’s a lot more positives to draw than a normal fall season when the team is 0-2.
Two Ethan Torres FGs, one 26 yards, and one 24 yards, were enough to put the Bucknell Bison atop the Patriot League South Division, shutting out Lehigh at Murray Goodman Stadium 6-0.
In a way, the opening drive which ended with zero Lehigh points summed up the entire afternoon.
BETHLEHEM, PA – The Holy Cross Crusaders beat the Lehigh Mountain Hawks 20-3 at Murray Goodman Stadium in the first college football game contested by both schools in over 450 days.
It is uncharted waters for both teams, with plenty of questions to answer playing an unprecedented Patriot League spring football season. But many of the principal contributors in that 24-17 game more than a year ago in Bethlehem will be suiting up tomorrow.
For this Lehigh team, who has gone through this unique journey back to playing games that count, it feels like this weekend is almost as much a celebration of what football means to them as much as it is a Patriot League conference game against Holy Cross at Murray Goodman Stadium at noon this Saturday.
It’s been a very, very long wait, but this weekend, finally, we have a weekend of Patriot League football to look forward to.
“I’ve been very impressed with the enthusiasm and attitude across the board,” Lehigh head coach Tom Gilmore told me. “Getting the opportunity to be on the field and to be working towards competitive opportunities has really motivated everyone. It just feels different out there this semester. There’s an excitement in the air whenever we’re on the field.”
The signing day celebrations sometimes came with masks, but that didn’t make them any less important or meaningful to a group of athletes that have had a senior year like no other.
At the campuses at Lehigh and Lafayette, and the communities that surround them, there is a void in the third week in November, that most are trying to fill with virtual Rivalry activities and hope for a spring football season, making it not a cancelling of The Rivalry, but merely a delay to contest the game when it’s safer to have a more normal gameday experience.
On Tuesday, Lehigh University temporarily suspended training and practices for all sports programs after several Lehigh students tested positive for the coronavirus.
As Clark manned the sidelines at Kidd Brewer Stadium Saturday for the first time as the Mountaineers’ head coach, he drew from his football DNA to direct App State to its 35-20 victory over Charlotte in the 2020 season opener for both teams.
For months, fans, players, and Lehigh football head coach Tom Gilmore knew that this game wasn’t going to happen on this day. But Gilmore is trying to make the best of a difficult situation.
I have five burning questions on the issue that might help to give clarity on what a spring season for the Patriot League might look like.
Hope is not a strategy, and the truth is any form of national strategy has failed in an effort to have college football this fall. In a community like the Lehigh Valley, it’s a crushing loss to the coronavirus.
The Patriot League’s dilemmas, whether the rest of FCS admits it or not, is the FCS’ dilemmas. And as we inch closer to an alleged 2020 college football season, the NCAA needs to make some things very clear before a huge mess happens.
The Patriot League Office announced on Monday guidance regarding the 2020 fall competition, a list of principles to “guide the development of a Patriot League 2020 Athletics Plan.”
Lehigh head coach Tom Gilmore will be the first person to tell you that he’d prefer to have a regular spring assessment season for his football team.
It was an historic week that nobody could have foreseen.
I’m proud to unveil this year’s edition of the Patsy Ratings.
As a JMU fan and alum, it was tough to sit inside a cold Toyota Stadium this past Saturday and watch my team lose. What was even tougher was knowing that JMU lost because North Dakota State simply executed better.
When looking at James Madison’s road to Frisco and the FCS National Championship game this weekend, you have to look farther back than just the beginning of this season.
Patriot League Women’s Basketball conference play continues this week with five games on Wednesday, January 8, four on Saturday, Jan. 11 and one on Sunday, January 12. This week features 10 women’s basketball games around the Patriot League with all 10 on the Patriot League Network (PLN).
We are just over a week out from the FCS National Championship game in Frisco, TX. By all accounts, this should be a tightly contested, close matchup featuring the two best teams in the country. Let’s take a position by position look at the number two team in the country, the James Madison Dukes.
Appalachian State vs. UAB (New Orleans Bowl) When: Saturday, December 21st, 9:00 PM EST Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana TV/Streaming: ESPN, WatchESPN (subscription req’d) New Orleans Bowl History (Last 6) Dec. 15th, 2018: Appalachian State 45, Middle Tennessee State 13 Dec. 16th, 2017: Troy 50, North Texas 30 Dec. 17th, 2016: Southern Miss 28, Louisiana-Lafayette […]
Clark’s incredible journey came full-circle on Friday afternoon when he was introduced as the 22nd head football coach at Appalachian State.
The Dukes were not happy with their offensive production. Between penalties, turnovers and missed field goals, Coach Curt Cignetti felt the team left a lot of points on the board. A normally efficient red zone offense struggle to add to the early lead. It didn’t cost them this week, but the coaches know they need to tighten that up the rest of the way.
James Madison used a suffocating defense and just enough offense to defeat Northern Iowa 17-0 in the Quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs.
The Panthers play exceptional defense. They allowed only 220 yards against South Dakota State and 213 against San Diego. They will need a similar performance to stay in the game against James Madison.
The opening fifteen minutes and five seconds of the second round FCS playoff game between Monmouth and Jamses Madison featured six touchdowns, three by the visiting Hawks and three by the hosting Dukes. After that thrilling start, however, James Madison would score 45 unanswered points on the way to a dominating 66-21 victory.
Evans scampered 58 yards with a screen pass from quarterback Zac Thomas on a third-and-15 play less than two minutes into the game and Appalachian was on its way to the decisive 45-38 victory over Louisiana-Lafayette in the second consecutive meeting between the two teams in the conference title clash at Kidd Brewer Stadium.
The Bobcats may have been 30-point underdogs against one of the elite teams in the Group of Five, but TSU trailed just 14-13 midway through the third quarter. At that point, Appalachian finally unleashed tailback Darrynton Evans, who rushed for 154 yards on 21 carries and three second-half touchdowns to finally lift the Mountaineers (10-1 overall, 6-1 in the SBC) to their comfortable 35-13 win.
It is rare that the MVP of the Lehigh/Lafayette game is a kicker, but that’s exactly what happened this afternoon at Murray Goodman Stadium as the Leopards beat their bitter Mountain Hawk rivals for the first time in five years in a 17-16 win.
This season, though, there isn’t the same feeling of continuity that permeated many of these other games. Part of that comes from the fact that, unusually for The Rivalry, both teams are packed with young underclassmen, many of them playing in their first Rivalry ever. Normally, The Rivalry is filled with narratives. This season, it feels like the master narrative is waiting to be written with two teams that, even at this late date, have unknowns.
Going into this game, Lehigh’s defense had a serious challenge on their hands – to stop, or a least slow down, the leading rusher in FCS, Sacred Heart RB Julius Chestnut. For three quarters, they did just that, but in the fourth quarter Chestnut would score a pair of rushing touchdowns to lifted Sacred Heart to a 13-6 victory.
It is hard to believe that 24th-ranked Appalachian State could play so badly early in its Sun Belt Conference football showdown Saturday night at historic Turner Field and still find time to engineer its 56-28 victory over the Panthers.
It’s highly unusual for Lehigh (4-5, 3-2) and Sacred Heart (6-4, 4-2)to be playing a non-conference game this late in the season, but for both teams, important milestones remain.
It was, depending on your perspective, either the roughest Lehigh offensive performance of the season, or the greatest Bucknell defensive performance of the year.
It seems like nothing ever comes easy for Appalachian State when it is playing a Power-5 Conference football team. So why would Saturday night before 80,849 fans be any different for the Mountaineers in its 20-15 nail-biter over South Carolina at Williams-Brice Stadium?
Most games between head coaches in their first years at a school are ones where the opponents need to feel themselves out, thanks to unfamiliarity. That will not be the case this weekend, as Cecchini and Gilmore have more than two decades of awareness of one another and their tendencies. It should have the feel of a brotherly fight.
For the players of both programs, it was more about demonstrating how much they had improved over that battle of 1-6 teams on a wet, rainy, homecoming game a year ago in Worcester. Both teams showed exactly how much more they were than those teams with losing records last year, and in the end, Holy Cross showed that they were one play better than the Mountain Hawks on this afternoon.
BOONE, N.C. — In the wind, the cold and the snow of Kidd Brewer Stadium on Thursday, 20th-ranked Appalachian State seemingly watched the cotton boll of its Cotton Bowl hopes wither and die on the vine as arch-rival Georgia Southern held on for a 24-21 victory before 18,796 brave spectators and the national-television, Halloween-night audience […]
In the final minute, Holy Cross made one more play than Lehigh.
November in the Lehigh Valley is known for potentially frosty temperatures, blazing red and yellow fall colors, and apple picking season.
Don’t expect anything chill at Murray Goodman Stadium this Saturday, where the combined heat of the Holy Cross Crusaders (4-4, 2-0) and Lehigh Mountain Hawks (4-3, 3-0) should be radiating from both teams.
After their 27-24 win over Georgetown – their third conference game won on very memorable final plays – what is the Mountain Hawks’ secret for pulling out these conference wins?
Another week, another nail-biting game with the game in doubt in the closing seconds. Fans of of the Mountain Hawks might have been standing, perhaps cheering, perhaps looking away, unable to watch whether the 27 yard FG goes through the uprights.
Last season, Lehigh football suffered through a bunch of firsts that Mountain Hawk football fans had no desire to experience. One important one came on the campus of Georgetown on October 20th, 2018.
Up until that point, in the modern era, the Lehigh football team had not lost to Georgetown.
Before the biggest game of the year so far for the Lehigh football program, senior WR Dev Bibbens was left off the depth chart for the Fordham game. Two weeks ago, the New Hope, Pennsylvania native was leveled by a vicious hit to the midsection from a Colgate defensive back, and he didn’t return in […]