Bulldogs Home, Ivy Opener Saturday at 12

Bulldogs Home, Ivy Opener Saturday at 12

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Cornell Comes To Bowl For 2009 Opener


NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- The home opener for the Yale football team (1-0, 0-0 Ivy) against Cornell (1-0, 0-0) this Saturday features a pair of teams with opening-day wins looking to kick off the Ancient Eight campaign with a victory. The Yale-Cornell game, part of 2009 Yale Youth Day, can be seen live on Versus and heard on WELI (AM-960, 960weli.com) and WYBC (AM-1340, wybc.com).



Yale leads the series with Cornell 42-27-2 heading into the 72nd meeting. The series began in 1889 with a 60-6 Bulldog win at New Haven. The Blue have won three of the last four but Cornell took the last meeting. Yale is 28-12 against the Red at the Bowl.



Cornell jumped out to a 14-0 halftime lead with a pair of short TD runs and held on for a 17-14 win over Yale before a homecoming day crowd of 13,142 at Schoellkopf Field in the Ivy League opener for both schools. The Elis scored on a 71-yard punt return by Gio Christodoulou (Miami, Fla.) and a seven-yard pass from Ryan Fodor to Jarrett Drake, which cut the deficit to three with 1:16 to play. Cornell recovered the onside kick and ran out the clock.



The Tom Williams era began with a bang in Yale's season-opening 31-10 win over Georgetown in front of a near-capacity crowd at Multi-Sport Field. Williams and the Bulldogs never trailed the Hoyas (0-3), but the game was not put away until a 12-play, fourth-quarter drive capped by junior RB Jordan Farrell's second TD run of the day. The final stats were balanced. The Hoyas had 355 yards of total offense compared to Yale's 303, but the Bulldogs had more first downs (20-17) and picked off two passes.



Senior P/PK Tom Mante (Westford, Mass.) earned Yale's first 2009 award when he became the season's first Ivy League Special Teams Player of the Week. Mante had a great opening day during the Bulldogs' 31-10 win at Georgetown last Saturday. He had a 50-yard FG, a 42.8 average on six punts, tallied seven points and recovered his own on-side kick. His lone FG attempt was the longest made by a Bulldog since Ed Perks connected on a 52-yarder against Cornell in 1990. Mante, an All-Ivy selection at both positions last fall, had punts of 73 and 65 yards last week. The longest was two yards shy of the school record. "Tom [Mante] flipped the field for us and was a big factor in this victory," said Tom Williams, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, after Saturday's game.



Williams wasn't the only talked about debut for the Blue. Sophomore QB Patrick Witt (Wylie, Texas), who transferred from Nebraska, completed 22 of 27 passes for 216 yards, including two TDs. Witt completed 22 of 27 passes for 216 yards and two TDs in his first game as a Bulldog. The "air" game has added meaning for Witt, whose parents are both commercial pilots and captains. His father flies MD88s for Delta while his mother does the same for American.




Senior DB Larry Abare (Acton, Mass.) picked up where he left off in 2008 by making a game-high seven solos and 12 total tackles in the win at Georgetown. His twin brother, Bobby '09, an All-America LB, is now a graduate assistant coach for the LBs at Wagner College.



Senior OLB Travis Henry (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.) didn't get statistical credit, other than a pass breakup, for his best play of the season opener last week. The 6-foot, 200-pound veteran leaped to sack Georgetown QB Isaiah Kempf and arrived as the ball was released. Henry's resounding hit caused the ball to pop up near the line of scrimmage where Yale OLB Tim Handlon (Valparaiso, Ind.) was waiting to grab it.



Senior RB Jordan Farrell (Orland Park, Ill.) made his first career start a big one. The 5-foot-10, 220-pound back, playing in his first game since 2007, had a 5.4 average and TD runs of 19 and three yards.Farrell, who missed 2008 with an injury, earned Walter Camp Yale Player of the Game honors by rushing for 91 yards on 17 carries. He also had one of the biggest hits of the day, as he was carrying the ball late in the first half. Farrell ran up the middle, saw two defenders he was not going to get around, and plowed them over. The two Hoyas got credit for tackles, but they were tackled by Farrell.



Sophomore DB Drew Baldwin (Alexandria, Va.) had Yale's first interception of 2009 and the first of his career at 11:17 of the first quarter. Senior LB Tim Handlon (Valparaiso, Ind.) snared his second career pick late in the second quarter after a near sack by OLB Travis Henry (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.).



Tom Williams was named the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football last January and came to New Haven after spending two seasons as an assistant for the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars. Williams has 11 seasons of college coaching experience. He is the 33rd Yale head football coach but just the third in the last 44 years.



"This was a complete team victory - offense, defense and special teams all performed when they needed to. You saw the difference between a team that was playing its third game and a team that was playing its first game. We have to get the kinks out, but we are on our way. When all components are working the way they worked in the second half I think we're going to be tough to beat."



Williams can be heard Monday nights on WYBC (AM-1340) from 8 to 8:30 on the Yale Sports Monday Show. The Yale segment of the weekly Ivy League media teleconference is 11:53 AM on Tuesdays, while he and some of his players will be at the Yale Bookstore every Tuesday at 2 p.m. for the Dick Galiette Press Conference.



Tom Williams, off to a 1-0 start, begins his Yale career following a full spectrum of success in debut seasons. The best debut campaign for a Yale head coach was the first, Walter Camp (13-0 and National Champs) in 1888. The next 20 coaches enjoyed comparable success in the early years of the sport. However, wins for new coaches in the later part of the 20th century did not come so easily. Two of the five Eli mentors since 1950 had better than .500 marks, Jordan Olivar (7-2 in 1952) and John Pont (6-3 in 1963). Herman Hickman went 4-5 in 1948, Carm Cozza was 3-6 in 1965 and Jack Siedlecki was 1-9 in 1997.



Day Time Venue Event

Mondays 8 pm WYBC Radio Yale Sports Monday at Lansdowne

Tuesdays 11:53 am Ivy Teleconference Media Call-in with questions

Tuesdays 2 pm Yale Bookstore Galiette Press Conference



Two Yale assistant coaches spent time last summer at NFL training camps as intern coaches. Kefense Hynson, who works with Yale's receivers, was with Oakland. Ikaika Malloe, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Defensive Coordinator, worked with Jacksonville... Mike Sanford, the mentor for the Yale TEs and a former Boise State QB, is the son of UNLV football head coach Mike Sanford. The Rebels are 2-1 after beating Hawaii 34-33 last week... Student assistant coach Isaiah DeLeon-Mares, who worked at the Warrick Dunn Foundation, also worked with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last summer.



Last Saturday marked the third straight win over Georgetown on opening day. Yale's all-time September record is 108-32-3, including 117-18-3 on opening day.



Ancient Eight schools went 3-5 last week with wins by Columbia (over Fordham), Cornell (Bucknell) and the Elis.



Ben Ganter completed 17 of 25 passes for 172 yards and two scores as Cornell opened with a 33-9 win over Bucknell at Ithaca last Saturday. The Red, which got a 65-yard TD run by Stephen Liuzza to put the game away in the second quarter, forced three turnovers and never trailed. The Cornell defense was led by LBs Chris Costello (14 tackles), Dempsey Quinn and Aaron Levine (10 tackles each). The Big Red held the Bison to 238 yards of offense.



Yale football is the featured subject of the inaugural Back Page TV Show hosted by ESPN Radio's Jason Page. The show airs this Thursday, Sept. 24, at 7:30 pm on CTSN (Comcast 185 & 187 and Cox 144). Former coaches Carm Cozza and Jack Siedlecki took part in the studio event along with ex-Bulldogs Rich Diana '82, Pat Ruwe '83 and Chandler Henley '07, while current head coach Tom Williams was interviewed for the show.



Yale received four votes for national rankings in the first Sports Network Top 25 poll and was up to seven in week No. 2. The Bulldogs, who had one vote last week and two this week, were last ranked among the top 25 at the end of the 2007 season. Cornell had three votes this week.



RB Robert Carr broke Yale's single-game rushing record with 235 yards at Ithaca in 2002 in a 50-23 victory... TB Ken Hill set the current school record with a 100-yard kickoff return at the Bowl in 1978 during a 42-14 win.



A new tradition for Bulldog players is Yale football history education. During pre-season meetings Coach Williams had former Yale players come to the athletic department to speak about their experiences. Last Friday night at the hotel, former Dallas Cowboys RB and NFL All-Pro Calvin Hill addressed the squad. Hill '69 is currently a consultant for the Cowboys.



For the 10th straight season, the Walter Camp Football Foundation honors Yale's game MVP as the Walter Camp Yale Player of the Game. This award is handed out both at home and on the road. Walter Camp (class of 1880), commonly known as the father of American football, captained two Yale teams and coached five others. He compiled a 67-2-0 record and won three national titles as coach. Senior RB Jordan Farrell (Orland Park, Ill.) earned the first award in 2009 with a 5.4 average per carry and two scores at Georgetown.




After last Saturday's win, Yale has an 84-21-3 record against Patriot League teams. The Elis have played Bucknell (3-1), Colgate (25-10-3), Fordham (4-1), Georgetown (3-0), Holy Cross (27-4), Lafayette (7-0), Lehigh (14-5) and Towson (1-0).



Yale, which had 31 last week, has scored 30 or more points 306 times with a record of 298-7-1 in those games. The seven losses were against Penn in 1972 (30-48), Cornell in 1990 (31-41), Lehigh in 1994 (32-36), Brown in 2001 (34-37), Penn in 2003 (31-34 in overtime), Brown in 2003 (44-55) and Princeton in 2006 (31-34). The tie was in 1931 against Dartmouth (33-33).



Seven former Yale football players are working in the game this fall, either in the college or pro ranks. Mike McCaskey '65, chairman of the Chicago Bears, Buffalo head coach Dick Jauron '73, Bob Wallace '78 (Executive V.P. and General Council, St. Louis Rams) and New England assistant coach Pat Graham '01 are the Bulldogs in the NFL. Bob Shoop '88, defensive coordinator at William & Mary, Merchant Marine Academy offensive coordinator Kyle Metzler '02 and Bobby Abare '09, linebackers coach at Wagner, work at colleges.



Seven current Bulldogs have brothers who play or played Yale football. Current Yale football brother combinations include junior OLB Sean and freshman QB Scott Williams (Portland, Ore.) and junior DB Marcus and senior OLB Jack Wallace (Germantown, Wis.).



Can you picture a 290-pound guy in bib overalls running an auction? If you could, it might be freshman OL Jeff Marrs (Garden Prairie, Ill.), who grew up on a farm of about 2,000 acres near Rockford, Ill. Marrs, his brother and grandfather are all auctioneers. The 6-foot-3, 290-pound former all-state lineman made his collegiate debut last Saturday.



Approximately 90 members of the Yale football team worked their phones on the night of Sept. 9 to call all season ticket clients and thank them for supporting the Bulldogs. The 450 calls took 20 minutes. Jeremy Makins, Yale's Director of Ticket Operations, had asked Tom Williams for 15 or 20 players to make the calls. The Yale head coach told Makins that the players do everything as a team, so every available Eli took part. The players, mostly using their own cell phones, identified themselves completely and talked about the 2009 season. Williams, who was traveling to a Yale Club of Boston event on the 9th, wanted to make the first few calls himself from the road. He was pleasantly surprised to find that one of the season ticket holders he called was headed for the same event. "This was a great way to make season ticket holders feel closer to the team," said Makins.



Paul Rice (Cleveland Heights, Ohio), a senior LB who opened the year with 3-4-7 at Georgetown, is the 132nd Yale football captain. He came to Yale as a talented RB but moved to defense when asked to his freshman year. Rice, who has 122 total career tackles and six interceptions, started at CB the last three years before moving to LB this season. His father, Lou Rice, played defense for Harvard.



Six-foot-2, 235-pound senior WR John Sheffield (Portland, Ore.), who has 14 catches in two career games at Georgetown, and junior WR Peter Balsam (Orland Park, Ill.) each had a game-high six receptions last Saturday. Sheffield had 59 yards on receptions including a 19-yard TD while Balsam, a 6-foot-3, 210-pounder, had 44.



Senior TE A.J. Haase (Bonne Terre, Mo.) scored his first TD and Yale's first of the year on a 28-yard pass over the middle from Patrick Witt in the first quarter... Junior DL Joe Young (Shrewsbury, Mass.) had Yale's only sack of the day against the Hoyas... Junior QB Brook Hart (State College, Pa.) came in the game on the fifth Yale series, but the Bulldogs went three-and-out... Senior OL Ben Meyer (Dallas, Texas) made his varsity debut last week after overcoming a leg injury... Former Hopkins star John Powers (Hamden, Conn.) made a big special teams play with a solo stop on a kick return on the Georgetown 13 yard line... The Bulldogs had the ball 11 minutes more than the Hoyas despite two Yale fumbles and six Georgetown sacks... Yale was 3-for-4 in the red zone last week and stopped the Hoyas on four of five visits... The Blue will have six home games (Georgetown, Albany, Fordham, Penn, Columbia, Princeton) next year with four road (Cornell, Dartmouth, Brown, Harvard) contests.



When freshman RB Mordecai Cargill (Cleveland, Ohio) got his first collegiate carry, a 10-yard run in the first half, he probably didn't know the significance of the moment. Cargill, who wears No. 28 and earned a shot at varsity playing time with a great pre-season camp, didn't know who wore that number until one of his teammates told him. Mike McLeod '09, who owns every Yale rushing record wearing the same number, was two rows from the surface of Multi-Sport Field watching his first game as an alum.



Sophomore LB Austin Pulsipher (Temecula, Calif.) came to Yale three years ago and was part of the 2006 Ivy League co-championship team before heading to greater Taipei, Taiwan for a two-year Mormon mission. He became fluent in Mandarin Chinese, served in many leadership roles and taught a drug rehabilitation program while managing the finances of over 150 missionaries.



Yale is 363-190-26 overall in 579 games played at the Bowl. The Elis are 123-73-4 in Ivy games. Yale has had seven perfect and 11 undefeated seasons in the Bowl since it opened in 1914.



A survey of this fall's Yale squad revealed interesting character traits about its members. Here are the results of the voting on Bulldog players:

Most Humorous: H-B John Sheffield (Portland, Ore.)

Most Intelligent: QB Rich Scudellari (Saratoga, Calif.)

Most Vocal: DB Larry Abare (Acton, Mass.)

Most Likely to be US President: DL Patrick Moran (Alexandria, Va.)

Unusual Hobby: RB Rodney Reynolds (Mt. Vernon, N.Y.), gospel-rap singing

Best Singer: WR Lars Knudsen (Whitefish Bay, Wis.)

Strongest: RB Alex Thomas (Ansonia, Conn.)



Three members of the Yale coaching staff have ties to Hawaii, and Tom Williams has instituted Hawaiin Fridays in the football office. Any staffers caught without a Hawaain style shirt on a Friday on the third floor of Ray Tompkins House is subject to a one dollar fine. Sophomore OL Gabriel Fernandez (Honolulu) is the first Yale football player from Hawaii in 10 years. WR Jimmy Bennett '00 (Honolulu), who played on the 1999 Ivy League championship squad, was the last Eli from the 50th state.



A dog-friendly bar is open in New Haven this fall. Yale coaches and athletes will frequent Lansdowne Bar & Grill (179 Crown Street) Monday nights from 7-9 for WYBC Radio's sports lineup. At 8, Tom Williams, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, makes a weekly appearance on "Yale Sports Monday" with Anthony Brooks'03 MM and Sam Purdy ‘10. Athletes and coaches from all sports, including football, will be interviewed each week on "Yale Sports Monday" from 8-9. From 7-8 Michael Dunn '10 and Sam Levander '10 host "Cover 2 Sports," a comprehensive national sports talk show.



The first of six Yale JV games kicks off this Sunday on Clint Frank Field at 1 pm against Milford Academy. The only road contest is on Oct. 4 at Brown. the only non-Sunday afternoon game is the Friday, Nov. 20, showdown with Harvard.



This Saturday's home opener is also Yale Youth Day. Included in the day's events are youth games at the Bowl before and after the Sept. 26 Yale-Cornell contest. New Haven middle schools Betsy Ross and.Wexler-Grant kick the day off at 9 a.m., while the Shoreline League game pitting North Haven vs. East Haven is set for 4 p.m. Other activities included are Yale student-athletes and coaches conducting morning clinics in various sports and a youth fair.



The 2009 Yale football roster includes 60 high school football captains and 41 captains of other sports. The Elis also list 52 National Honor Society members, six student body presidents, six valedictorians and three salutatorians.



Yale may be the only football team in America to have had a state holiday decreed because of its visit. In 1929 (80 years ago this fall) when Yale visited the University of Georgia to be its dedication opponent for the opening of Sanford Stadium, the governor issued a proclamation making the day a legal holiday in honor of Yale University and of the Yale men who founded the state university in Georgia.



Freshman DB Kurt Stottlemyer (Bothell, Wash.) played for USA Football in the inaugural International Federation of American Football's (IFAF) 2009 Junior World Championship at Fawcett Stadium in Canton, Ohio from June 27 to July 5. The American squad defeated Canada 41-3 to win the championship on July 5. Stottlemyer played FS in a five-defensive back (3-3-5) defense. He had tackles in each game on defense and special teams and made a sack in the semi-final game against Mexico. "It was just a great experience. I got to practice with some of the best players in the nation for a month and I got to meet kids from all over the world. It's a great feeling to be able to play for your country and represent the USA," said the Eli newcomer.



Eight Yale football games will air live on TV this fall, including four of five home games. Yale on YES is back for a second season with three straight Ivy League games (Columbia, Brown, Princeton) on the network of the New York Yankees. The YES Network, available nationally on DirecTV, Verizon's FiOS service and on select cable systems, is the country's No. 1 regional sports network. Two contests (Cornell, Harvard) will be broadcast on Versus, the national cable home of the National Hockey League that is in more than 73 million homes. Other Yale games aired in 2009 include Penn (Comcast), Lafayette (RCN) and Lehigh (Service Electric 2).



The Bulldogs have begun a tradition befitting the school responsible for shaping the game of football. Prior to every home game, Coach Williams will gather the team under the Walter Camp Field Memorial (see photo) to remind the Bulldogs of their proud heritage. Walter Camp '1880, who coached the Blue (67-2) for five seasons and was instrumental in shaping the rules as we know them, is commonly referred to as the father of American football.



Ninety-five-year old Yale Bowl hosted the world's largest (312 x 144 feet) tennis court in August during the Pilot Pen Tennis Tournament as part of a promotion by Sony-Ericcson. WTA star Caroline Wozniacki (Denmark), two-time defending tourney champion, took part in the promo along with Yale coach Tom Williams. Wozniacki, who later spoke to the Bulldogs at a Yale football practice, received a team jersey a few days before making it to the 2009 U.S. Open final.


NEWS/Talk 960 WELI broadcasts all Yale football games on AM (960) and online at weli.com. Yale football coaching legend Carm Cozza, a 2003 College Football Hall of Fame inductee, is in his 12th season as the color commentator for WELI broadcasts. Ron Vaccaro '04 returns for his fourth year as play-by-play announcer. Vaccaro is a two-time Emmy Award winner for his work with NBC Olympics, his primary employer since 2004. His on-air resume also includes the 2008 Beijing Olympics for NBC and the 2009 World Swimming Championships for Universal Sports. Sideline reporter Alex Goldberger '08, engineer Tom Ivanovich and spotter Kevin Guarino add the finishing touches to the broadcasts.



Ken Burkus '75, a three-year starter at offensive guard who played on the 1974 Ivy League championship Bulldog squad after starring at Amity (Woodbridge, Conn.) High School, will be a guest commentator on WELI during the third quarter of the Yale home opener. Burkus, a farmous spinal surgeon in Columbus, Ga., preceded his brother, Greg '83, on the Yale football team.



WYBC (AM 1340) also covers each game. WFAN Radio personality Bob Heussler, WYBC's Director of Football Radio Broadcasts, and Anthony Brooks '03 MM, the station's sports coordinator, lead a talented group of Yale students who can also be heard on wybc.com. Yale football is also included in WYBC's Monday night sports lineup from Lansdowne Bar & Grill (179 Crown Street). At 8 pm, Tom Williams, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, makes a weekly appearance on "Yale Sports Monday."



Another way to listen to Yale games live is by calling TEAMLINE at 800.846.4700 and using Yale's code 5682.



The Dick Galiette/Yale Football Press Conference has moved from the Course at Yale back to campus with the first edition on Sept. 15. The new location is the Yale Bookstore, which will host this event for 10 Tuesdays at 2 p.m. Coach Williams and a selection of players will take part in the press conferences that are streamed live by Sportingnewsct.com. They will take place on the second floor where all the book signings are done. The press conferences are open to the public, but questions for Williams and his players are limited to the working media. The Yale Bookstore is also the sponsor of the Yale Sports Hotline (203.432.YALE), where Yale fans get game-day scores without going to their computers.



Ron Vaccaro '04 hosts a series of video netcast interviews, which will include the Yale football team and other Yale athletics content, on yalebulldogs.com. Vaccaro also has a set of audio netcasts featuring the team for Apple iTunes users at itunes.yale.edu.



Media take note... The Yale Bowl may be in West Haven, but the press box has a taste of New Haven with Yorkside Pizza & Restaurant serving slices and salad on home Saturdays. Rather than interrupting your work with a lunch at halftime, the food is now served on its arrival before kickoff.



The Ivy League will hold a weekly football coaches' teleconference every Tuesday during the 2009 season beginning September 15 and running through November 17. Each teleconference will begin at 11 a.m. ET. Each coach will be available for a seven-minute window to preview his team's upcoming opponent and answer questions from the media. A replay of the teleconferences will be made available on www.IvyLeagueSports.com. To access the call, use the following (877) 548-7906 and Passcode: 9204583.


Ivy Teleconference Schedule

11:04 am Phil Estes, Brown

11:11 am Norries Wilson, Columbia

11:18 am Jim Knowles, Cornell

11:25 am Buddy Teevens, Dartmouth

11:32 am Tim Murphy, Harvard

11:39 am Al Bagnoli, Penn

11:46 am Roger Hughes, Princeton

11:53 am Tom Williams, Yale



A documentary film titled GameDay that will include footage from the 2009 Yale-Harvard game will appear in IMAX 3D theatres around the country later this fall. The film will provide an all access pass to college football focusing on the preparation, traditions, rivalries and pageantry.



This November the Yale/Harvard contest in the Bowl will mark the one hundredth anniversary of the historic National Championship Game of 1909.The 1909 Yale-Harvard game, an 8-0 Bulldogs win, featured two undefeated teams (the next matchup of undefeated squads in The Game was in 1968). Yale won the national championship and preserved its unbeaten, untied and unscored on marks. Three future members of the Football Hall of Fame suited up for the game. For Yale: fullback Ted Coy and end John Reed Kilpatrick and for Harvard: tackle Hamilton Fish. A reunion of family members is planned for this November's game.


Release filed by Steve Conn, Yale Associate AD & Sports Publicity Director