My rants and insight into Colgate athletics and Patriot League sports

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Everyone, Welcome Homer

Now that the sane and rational part of my brain has ruled the roost for the summer, my old friend Homer dropped by this morning. It is not to be unexpected as the 2005 Colgate season opens this very Saturday, and Homer is known to get most excited at the beginning of a season when all teams are undefeated and conference championships seem perfectly obtainable.

So I welcomed Homer in for the day to come up with my first annual "13 Reasons Why Colgate Will Win the Patriot League". It's tough really, leaving the list to just 13 reasons. Many a good reason will get cut. Perhaps the dear readers will leave a few more in the comments. Anyhow, here it is:

13 Reasons Why Colgate Will Win the Patriot League

1. Ray LaMonica. This fifth year tailback has been quietly overlooked by many a Patriot Leaguer. They have to think back all the way to 2002 to remember that as a sophomore, this young man rushed for 877 yards in only six starts. He is quick and a totally different back than Jamaal Branch. Don't be surprised to see great things from #22.
2. Joe Pinion and J.J. Bennett. Who and who you might say? It is a long season and back up tailbacks are a good thing to have. God forbid something were to happen to Ray, we should all not forget that Joe is back after missing last year and he was the starter in 2003 before Mr. Branch took over. He hasn't played in a while, but he's got experience and had enough talent to be named the starter. That counts for something. J.J. is a newcomer who is not so 'new' to college football. He's technically a transfer from Kentucky by way of a community college. I'm suspicious that there's some talent there than could surface sooner rather than later.
3. Dick Biddle. Coach Biddle has hardly been asleep at the wheel folks. The man is a legend in the making (if he already hasn't attained that status). He will get the most out of the players he has, and the talent he's brought in over the past four years is very good; good enough to win the Patriot League and more.
4. Home Field Advantage. This cannot be understated. We have the benefit of Lehigh, Fordham and Bucknell at Andy Kerr. We are tough to beat at Andy Kerr. The last team to do it was Villanova in 2002.
5. DeWayne Long. Admit it Raider fans: you were wondering how we were going to be at wide receiver this year. Then DeWayne got his sixth year. You jumped for joy. You high fived your co-workers. You shed a tear...
6. No Bullseye. Sure, teams will still get up for a Colgate game like they have in the past, but the weight that was on the shoulders of this team has been lifted. They are not the top dog trying to stay on top. It is much easier getting there than staying there.
7. Coordinators. Colgate has enjoyed long tenures from Mike Foley and Ed Pinkham. They don't get the spotlight Coach Biddle gets, but they are definitely worthy of praise in their own right. Year in, year out, these two have some of the best offenses and defenses around. Their stability means that these new guys taking over have been in the same system from the start. The same system that has won a few championships.
8. Jared Nepa. Jared is an under appreciated linebacker who takes a back seat to others around the league when people start talking. Sorry, that's no good. Jared is one of the top players in the league and will manhandle people this year.
9. Geoff Bean. The superstar in the making, Geoff's coming out party as a sophomore is only the tip of the iceberg. He's the real deal.
10. Improved atmosphere and support. There is a buzz this year (at least in my ears there is). I'm sensing an increase in fan support for this program and just general excitement to get at it this year. Good vibes mean good things will happen.
11. Streaks. Yes, this is a brand new year, but I like having a few of them on my side. Biddle's winning seasons, home games in a row, wins over Lafayette. They are like a nice warm blanket to begin a season with.
12. Tight End. This option was sorely missing last year. Word is there was some healthy competition in camp. I think we'll see a lot more action from this position.
13. A Fresh Start. This is counterintuitive, but it actually makes a lot of sense. As good as Colgate was last year, we were at times predictable and, unfortunately I think, complacent at times. How do you top 2003's run? The same juice just wasn't there. Fresh faces looking to prove themselves and a clean slate free of other peoples expectations is just what the Raiders need.

4 Comments:

  • Thanks for the info , perspective and humor (which is
    always a plus to be appreciated).

    Being no more than a casual but
    very interested spectator , several items were intiguing .

    The reference to the play at tight end is significant .Prod-
    uctivity there can't be measmured
    in mere yards . TE yardage translates into first downs and
    possession . It also can mean
    open spaces in the field for speed
    players .

    Great to see reference to a couple frosh on the two deep .Would
    not be surprised to see frosh
    impact at the so called " skill " positions as well . Have not heard
    much there but sense that there is
    real talent to be heard from .

    Also good to see reference to the intangibles , team attitude and growing fan support . Not some-
    thing one can quantify in end of game stats , but likely more decisive over the course of the season than even the performance of a top player .

    Would be interested in any more news re pre -season and the other
    frosh .

    Keep up the good work .

    By Anonymous get 'em 'gate, at 8:55 PM  

  • One Reason Colgate WON'T win the PL: Bucknell

    HomerZ

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:51 AM  

  • Thanks Ken.. er, I mean, "HomerZ"! But Colgate's defense is going to shred your new QB to pieces. They will have plenty to prove after last year's embarrassment. It will be a long trip back to Lewisburg!

    By Blogger colgate13, at 8:20 AM  

  • ben evans may be a secret weapon...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:43 PM  

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