Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Tussle In The Woods

If you've been paying attention you know that Dartmouth and Brown will be closing the season against each other starting in 2018.

With the change in the Ivy League schedule, Columbia and Cornell will be finishing against each other every year in a game now called the Empire State Bowl. Princeton and Penn will be closing the season every year in a game that pits the Ivy League's two fiercest basketball rivals against each other. And of course nothing has changed with Harvard and Yale.

Dartmouth and Brown? To be completely honest, neither has a real rival that feels the same way about them. Sure, Dartmouth considers Harvard a rival but you know who Harvard considers a rival. Ditto for Brown, which is an afterthought of sorts to Harvard and Yale when it comes to a rivalry.

Dartmouth and Brown? They've had a nice rivalry going the past five years with hard-fought games going this way:

2009 - Brown 14, Dartmouth 7 (overtime)
2010 - Brown 35, Dartmouth 28
2011 - Dartmouth 21, Brown 16
2012 - Brown 28, Dartmouth 24
2013 - Dartmouth 24, Brown 20

If Dartmouth-Brown is going to develop into an interesting season-ending rivalry, the game can use a nickname. Lehigh and Lafayette have The Rivalry. Oregon and Oregon State have The Civil War. Stanford and Cal have The Big Game. Harvard and Yale have, well, you know ;-)

Tuss McLaughry
That brings us to Tuss McLaughry. A member of the College Football Hall of Fame, McLaughry was head coach at Brown from 1926 until 1940. He moved on to Dartmouth in 1941 and coached the Big Green until 1954.

In recognition of his service as the longtime secretary-treasurer of the American Football Coaches Association, the AFCA each year presents the Tuss McLaughry Award (LINK), which is "given to a distinguished American (or Americans) for the highest distinction in service to others."

Among the winners since the award was instituted in 1964 have been Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Bob Hope, Lyndon B. Johnson, Dwight D. Eisenhower, The Reverend Billy Graham, Pete Rozelle, Gen. Chuck Yeager, Rudy Giuliani and Tom Osborne. Click HERE for a full list of winners.

Given Tuss McLaughry's history with both Brown and Dartmouth as well as his place in college football, here's a proposed nickname for the Dartmouth-Brown game: The Tussle.

And here's an idea for how to pitch the game when it's in Hanover:

In a story featuring photos of a pair of familiar coaches who lead the nation's only two undefeated FCS teams (Harvard with Tim Murphy, and Coastal Carolina with Joe Moglia), The Sports Network picks Dartmouth over Brown. TSN also picks:
Harvard over Penn
Yale over Princeton
Cornell over Columbia
Here's how this week's Gridiron Power Index ranks the Ivy League teams and Dartmouth's nonconference opponents:

t-13. Harvard
39. Yale
t-43 Dartmouth
77. Princeton
79. Brown
116. Cornell
119. Columbia

5. New Hampshire
72. Holy Cross
t-99. Central Connecticut State 
Brown's game notes have been posted HERE.

Dartmouth quarterback Dalyn Williams is interviewed as Dartmouth's male athlete of the week HERE.