Friday, September 16, 2016

The Wait Is (Almost) Over

From the Dartmouth football office:

As of Friday morning Dartmouth is pegged as a 3.5-point favorite over New Hampshire, down from 11.5 at the start of the week. Now the pundits are chiming in.

The Dartmouth has five students making picks and, surprise (not) they all pick Dartmouth. (LINK)

STATS, perhaps as close to the bible of FCS football as there is, disagrees. (LINK) Craig Haley writes:
Of course, these instate rivals missed playing each other last year when Dartmouth went 9-1 and won a share of the Ivy League title. With the Big Green replacing 17 starters, UNH shouldn't have any problem making it 14 straight wins in the series.
 The Roar Lions blog arrives at the same destination in a different manner, predicting the game will be "somewhat close, but UNH will win.,"
Allen Lessels' UNH Insider quotes New Hampshire Coach Sean McDonnell this way in its preview:
"I think it's the best thing for the state of New Hampshire, the best thing for FCS football. We're the only two teams in the state. We're an hour and forty five minutes away from each other. They're the best team in the Ivy League, we're one of the best teams in the CAA. We should be playing each other year in and year out."
More from Insider:
Dartmouth, like UNH, has room on its schedule for three nonconference games a season. The Big Green have posted their nonconference games for each year through the 2020 season on their website and there are no games scheduled against UNH at this time.
WMUR TV in Manchester has 45-second looks at the Granite Bowl from the UNH perspective and from the Dartmouth perspective.

For a little more detailed look at the game, check out the reported pulled together by Burlington, Vt. station WCAX TV. The voice is that of former Dartmouth offensive lineman Mike McCune. Quarterback Jack Heneghan, defensive lineman Brandon Cooper and Coach Buddy Teevens all get a little screen time.  (LINK)
And finally, STATS has a very general overview of the Ivy League. Play opens tonight with Harvard and Rhode Island squaring off. (LINK)

Dartmouth has the dubious distinction tomorrow night of being the last Division I school in the country to start play. It's the third time in five years that the Big Green had to see the entire nation play before finally getting on the field.

The "Last to Start" tidbit is from the Ivy League notes, which have finally been posted HERE. The notes include a "Title History" with the number of championships for each team and their last championship. Dartmouth, of course, managed to maintain its one-championship lead over Harvard and Penn last fall by sharing the title with its two closest challengers for that slice of Ivy League history. From the notes:

Titles – School – Last
18 – Dartmouth – 2015
17 – Harvard – 2015
17 – Penn – 2015
14 – Yale – 2006
10 – Princeton – 2013
4 – Brown  – 2008
3 – Cornell – 1990
1 – Columbia – 1961