Bulldogs Gather to Support Team

Carm Cozza and Tony Reno. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Carm Cozza and Tony Reno. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Scharf Honored With Record Numbers

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Bulldogs came from all over the country to show their love and support of Yale Football on Monday at the Course at Yale. They did that while playing golf and a game called cornhole and re-uniting with old friends and teammates during the team's major fundraising event on a spectacular day on the famous golf course.

A full field of golfers and a large group of others who came for dinner and the cornhole competition were also there to celebrate the long-time support of Don Scharf '55, the day's honoree. Contributions from every team since 1965 (Carm Cozza's first year as head coach) showed how much Scharf has meant to them and to Yale football in his role connecting alumni with student-athletes.

The 1989 Yale football team won an Ivy title with great team work. That leadership, spearheaded by captain Jon Reese '90, continued with the 89ers capturing the "sponsorship competition" long before the shot gun sounded on the golf course Monday morning.

First prize in the golf scramble for low gross went to former Yale player Jack Kelley '81 and his team of David Baker, John Dufor and Jim Petella with a score of 55 on the par-70 course.

Reese was determined to spread his leadership skills to others on the links. So it was no surprise when the top prize for low net (59) was taken by Reese, Pat Ruwe '83, Jack Ford '72, Yale Athletics Director Tom Beckett and Ed Crowley. Ruwe, captain of the 1982 Elis and president of the Yale Football Association, displayed his leadership skills as well, serving as master of ceremonies and the conductor of the live auction.

The competition within the tournament is called the Cozza Cup and it involves groups with only former players. The fourth annual cup was awarded to Class of 2000 teammates Joe Walland, Jake Fuller, Jake Borden and Baily Dent, who posted a 59. That score, for the foursome, was nearly as miraculous as the last-second, Walland-to-Borden, back of the end zone connection to beat Brown in 1998 at Providence.

Tony Reno (photo, with Cozza), the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach, played the treacherous ninth hole with each group and still managed to deliver a motivational and informational state-of-the-team address at the dinner. Many of his players volunteered to help with the activities and added a personal touch to the effort.

The team of Charlie Weatherspoon '78 and John Maturo '76 were the winners at cornhole, which is a competition that focuses on tossing small bean bags from a distance into a hole in a flat, wooden surface. John Smoot '76 officiated the mid-afternoon event that finished shortly after the golfers returned to the tent off the third fairway.

Many of the former Bulldogs participating in the day had been involved in record-breaking plays, games and seasons on the Class of 1954 Field. Their efforts on Monday made for an unprecedented fundraising effort that left a lasting impression.


Filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity