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Yale Kicking Off 2013 at Colgate

Yale Kicking Off 2013 at Colgate

Bulldogs Head To Hamilton For 1 pm Start

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The 141st season of Yale Football begins this Saturday at 1 p.m. with a tough, non-league contest in the Patriot League. The Bulldogs take on Colgate (0-3) in a Homecoming Game at Andy Kerr Stadium that can be seen live on the Patriot League Network and heard on the Yale Football Radio Network (WELI 960 AM in New Haven area).

Yale has a 25-11-3 lead in a series heading into the 40th meeting. They began playing in 1909 and all but two games have been at New Haven. The Raiders and Elis split the two games at Hamilton.

QB Gavin McCarney ran for four touchdowns and threw for two others as Colgate beat Yale 47-24 at Yale Bowl last season. McCarney (17 of 22, no int.) threw for 275 yards and ran for 85 on a day the Raiders rolled up 544 total yards. They also got help from RB Jordan McCord, who had 138 yards and a score. The Bulldogs also had some offensive highlights with RB Tyler Varga leading all players with 275 all-purpose yards. He rushed for 125 and a TD on 21 attempts while catching three passes for another score. WR Cameron Sandquist's 10 catches for 76 yards and a score led the Elis. He was the main target for Yale QB Eric Williams (21 of 40, 3 int.), who ran for 114 yards and threw for 171.
The Bulldogs had a team record 103 offensive plays in a 49-14 win at New Haven in 1968…Bob Milligan '72 caught three TD passes in a 40-21 Blue win in 1971 at the Bowl… Yale established a school-record by forcing nine Colgate fumbles in 1974 at the Bowl, a 30-7 Eli win… Raider back Kenny Gamble had 220 yards on 36 carries in 1986, but the Blue won 28-23 at the Bowl… Yale TE Nate Lawrie had 16 catches and the teams combined for 92 points at Hamilton in 2003 during a 52-40 Colgate win.

Yale beat Georgetown in each of the last six openers. The last loss in a season opener was against San Diego in 2006, one of two straight losses to open the year against USD. The Bulldogs won their first 59 season openers before a scoreless tie with Bates in 1932. The first loss came two years later at the hands of Columbia. The Elis are 119-18-2 overall.

Yale was picked seventh in the 2013 Ivy League pre-season media poll. The Bulldogs finished 2-8 and were eighth in the Ivy last fall despite defeating the 2012 league champions and competing in many close games. Defending champion Penn took the top spot followed by Harvard, Brown and Dartmouth. Princeton and Cornell were fifth and sixth while Columbia was picked No. 8. There were 17 voters, including two media representatives per school and one national member.

Colgate, coming off a road loss at New Hampshire last week despite 144 rushing yards by Demetrius Russell, is looking for its first win. The Raiders opened at Air Force before facing Albany at home in week two.

1    elected team captain (Palin)
4    returning Elis who started a game at QB last fall (Williams, Russell, Furman, Varga)
5    All-Ivy players (Gavin, Oppenheimer, Randall, Smith, Varga)
6-8    height of the tallest player (Iverson)
11    wide receivers listed on roster
20    seniors
96    players on roster
99th    current season of Yale football in the Bowl
290    pounds of the heaviest player (Friedline)
595    regular season games played in the Bowl
Junior All-America candidate Tyler Varga (Kitchener, Ont.) led the nation with 199.4 all-purpose yards per game in 2012 and was the Ivy League leader with 119 rushing yards per game (10th in FCS). He rushed for over 100 yards in five (most in Ivy) of his seven games (9 yards shy vs. Cornell, 4 vs. Penn) and was the only Ivy player to rush for more than 200 in a game. His 220 at Columbia was sixth best for a Bulldog player and got him FCS national RB of the week from College Football Performance Awards. He was the first newcomer to run for triple digits in his Yale debut since Mike McLeod in 2005.  Varga, who played at the University of Western Ontario in 2011, was a star track & field athlete who also competed in swimming, basketball and baseball. Varga was a star regional sprinter and jumper, but injured his leg and was convinced by his coach to help the team by throwing the shot (45', 6.5") and javelin (110').
Injuries ravaged the quarterback position by midseason in 2012, so plenty of guys got experience.  Eric Williams (Portland, Ore.), Logan Scott (Woodland Hills, Calif.) and emergency backups WR Derek Russell (Newton, Mass.), WR Henry Furman (Portland, Ore.) and TB Tyler Varga (Kitchener, Ont.) all had starts behind center. All five with snaps behind center return this fall. Another option arrived over the summer. Sophomore Clemson transfer Morgan Roberts (Charlotte, NC) has had his share of snaps and could earn the top job.

Senior Henry Furman, who was a JV quarterback in 2010 and 2011, made a successful transition to receiver in 2012 and had nine catches, including a TD, as a backup. After three QBs went down in the Penn game, he jumped in and played behind center the last four Saturdays. His first collegiate start at any position came at QB against Princeton when the former Lincoln High (Portland, Ore.) School star completed 18 of 28 passes for 184 yards and a score as Yale's most valuable offensive player. He threw for 5,000 yards and 43 TDs before coming to Yale.

Senior Derek Russell (Newton, Mass.) was the team's top holder for kicks, a backup receiver, a kick coverage guy and an emergency backup QB in 2012. He got plenty of action in all those roles until suffering an injury while leading the Blue to a win over Penn as the emergency QB. When Yale's starting quarterback went down with an injury on the game's third series vs. Penn, Russell took over,

completing 13 of 20 passes, including a score, and running the ball 11 times for 61 yards and a TD. Russell, now a strong safety and holder, passed for 2,100 yards and 21 TDs his senior year at Newton South High and then bounced around different positions at Yale before settling into his first collegiate varsity role in 2012.

Sophomore Eric Williams (Portland, Ore.) started seven games in 2012 and was unable to play in three (Columbia, Princeton, Harvard). Against Colgate, he rushed for 114 yards (threw for 171) to become the first Yale QB to rush for triple digits since Sept. 21, 2002. Williams had 1,056 passing yards and six TDs. He is the brother of Yale football players Scott '13 and Sean Williams '11, and the son of former NFL player, Larry (Browns, Patriots, Saints, Chargers). Eric became Yale's first freshman starter behind center since Mike McClellan '01 (first Eli rookie QB to start a varsity game since World War II) in the 1997 season opener at home against Brown. Williams was the starting QB at Jesuit High School in Portland for two years before his family moved, and he spent his senior campaign at St. Ignatius near Cleveland. One of the assistant coaches on the St. Ignatius team was former Yale captain Rory Hennessey '05.

Morgan Roberts, a sophomore who played at Clemson last fall, was behind center in the first series at Brown during the Sept. 7 scrimmage. He completed 10 of 15 passes over five possessions. As a red-shirt freshman in 2012 at Clemson, Roberts was the No. 3 signal-caller and completed two of his three passes.

Junior WR Grant Wallace was second on the team last fall with 35 grabs for 371 yards and three scores. His top outing came on the biggest stage with 11 catches for 118 yards and a score at Harvard. Wallace, the son of former Bulldog Bob Wallace '78, had three or more receptions in four games.

Senior WR Cameron Sandquist led the team with 54 catches and 589 yards last season, including a career-best 10 catches against Colgate. He entered the season with 21 career grabs and kicked off 2012 with a bang. In the opener at Georgetown, he connected on a school-record, 98-yard pass play in the second quarter. His 187 yards in that game were the most by an Ivy player in 2012. Sandquist, who has six career TD grabs, scored on his first two collegiate receptions as a freshman in 2010 against Columbia. He was also the team's top punt returner; his 37-yarder vs. Princeton was the longest in the league. He is equally famous for his role as shortstop on the 2004 Little League World Series Northwest (Redmond LL) Team.
Sophomore DB Cole Champion (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) earned a starting safety spot early in 2012 and is the leading returning tackler (46-25-71) from last fall. He notched a career-high nine solos (10 overall) against Lafayette and then had 8-3-11 vs. Penn. Champion was an all-state football linebacker and lacrosse midfielder at St. Thomas Aquinas High. He is the school's career tackles leader and helped them earn "national championships" in 2008 (with current teammate LB Dylan Drake '13) and 2010. He has played on stages as big as Cowboys Stadium and against opponent running backs as talented as South Carolina's Marcus Lattimore and Florida State's James Wilder.  Not surprisingly, nine of his former teammates are playing Division I football, five in the FCS and four Ivy Leaguers. His father, Gregg Champion, played football at New Hampshire.

Junior Kyle Cazzetta (Slate Hill, N.Y.) has been named to numerous pre-season all-conference teams after averaging 40 per punt and landing 13 inside the 20 in 2012. Cazzetta has been the starter the last two seasons and could also be placekicking this fall. His career-best outing was at Brown with a 46.1 average on seven kicks and four inside the Brown 20, including a 72-yarder (3 yards shy of school record). He is No. 16 (2nd in region) on Phil Steele's FCS pre-season national list of punters.

Two All-Ivy League seniors, a pair of juniors and a sophomore are the most experienced of the offensive linemen back for 2013.
Seniors: LT 79 Wes Gavin (6-6, 286, San Diego, Calif.), C 60 John Oppenheimer (6-0, 264, Menlo Park, Calif.)
Juniors: RT 70 Ben Carbery (6-5, 287, Oak Park, Ill.), LG 67 William Chism (6-3, 277, Ridgeland, Miss.)
Sophomore: RG 50 Luke Longinotti (6-4, 265, Burlingame, Calif.).

Here are some other notes on Yale offensive linemen.
LT Wes Gavin had numerous scholarship offers but came to New Haven and became Yale's freshman MVP in 2010 before getting All-Ivy honors in 2012… He was named scholar-athlete by the San Diego chapter of the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame while also throwing the shot and discus in high school. Both of Gavin's parents are under 5-foot-8… John Oppenheimer, who moved over from the defense his sophomore year and became an All-Ivy center in 2012, played both sides of the line in high school. An active member of the Mandi Schwartz Marrow Donor Registration Drive at Yale, he made a live-saving marrow donation last spring and went to Washington, D.C. this past summer to speak to members of congress about the need for funding. His father, Peter Oppenheimer, is Apple's senior vice president and Chief Financial Officer… LG William Chism owns a fire wood business back home in Mississippi. His father, Brad Chism, played football at Millsap College and was a Rhodes Scholar. He is President of Zata|3 Consulting, a Washington, D.C.-based direct voter contact firm. The younger Chism had offers from every Ivy school and several other FCS institutions… RG Ben Carbery was a National Merit finalist and the captain of his high school's Scholastic Bowl team, which finished 17th at the 2010 National Academic Quiz Tournament national championship (he was 8th in the individual competition). Carbery, who was Yale's freshman MVP in 2011, is the son of Paul '83 and Sherry '83 Carbery. His aunt, Patti Carbery '86, played basketball and softball at Yale. Luke Longinotti, who played in all 10 games last year as a newcomer, was a three-sport (thrower, basketball) athlete in high school. His father, Ron, swam at Stanford and his mom, Libby, was varsity golfer at Stanford. His sister was a volleyball player at Columbia.

Fordham, coming to the Bowl on Oct. 19, is 3-0 after beating Temple last week, 30-29, at Philadelphia... NFL-style (18-feet, 10 inches) goal posts were installed on Clint Frank Field. The posts at Yale Bowl – and in all of college football – are 23'- 4"… The Bulldogs have two new faces on the coaching staff, one is familiar and the other is not. Paul Rice, the Bulldogs' 2009 captain, volunteered for the Yale program for a couple of seasons before becoming an offensive GA last year at Georgia Tech. He has the Eli outside linebackers this season. Meriden, Conn., native Patrick Hatch moved from Stony Brook to New Haven last summer to coach the Yale tight ends.  

Yale hasn't won a national championship since 1927, but there are three current Bulldogs who earned national titles before coming to New Haven. Senior LB Chris Brady's 2009 Don Bosco Prep (NJ) team finished first in the national prep poll rankings. Senior LB Dylan Drake and sophomore DB Cole Champion were teammates on the 2008 St. Thomas Aquinas (Fla.) team that earned the mythical national championship.

One hundred and nine former Yale students have become college football head coaches, though no Elis currently serve that role. However, the 2013 Vanderbilt University football team includes two coaches who are former Yale receivers. Bob Shoop '88, a 25-year veteran of college coaching, is the defensive coordinator. Chandler Henley '06, the captain of the 2006 Ivy Champions, is in his second year as an offensive graduate assistant coach. In addition, former Yale offensive lineman Kyle Metzler '03 is the offensive tackles/tight ends coach for Dartmouth.
Dartmouth owns the most Ivy League titles since league play officially began in 1956. Yale and Harvard trail Penn by two for second.

No.      Team                               Last Title
17        Dartmouth                       1996
16        Penn                                2012
14        Yale                                 2006
14        Harvard                           2011
 9         Princeton                         2006
 4         Brown                             2008
 3         Cornell                                  1990
 1         Columbia                         1961
Next season marks the 100th anniversary of Yale Bowl, which opened for the playing of the 1914 Harvard game. The cornerstone event of the season-long celebration is the Sept. 27 contest with Army, an old rival that helped fill the famous stadium on numerous occasions. Army and Yale last met in 1996 at West Point, the last game in New Haven was 1988. The Bulldogs have played 595 games and are 372-203-20 in the Bowl.

Yale has gone five straight seasons without a tie after regulation time. The Elis are 4-3 in OT games overall since its first, a 34-31 loss at Penn in 2003.The last OT game was a 26-20, triple-extra-session win at Penn in 2007.
Tony Reno, the Joel E. Smilow '54 Head Coach of Yale Football, and some of his players are at world famous Mory's (306 York Street) every Tuesday (Sept. 17 through Nov. 19) at noon for the Dick Galiette Yale Football Media Luncheon. This event is limited to media only. Please contact Yale Sports Publicity Director Steve Conn ( if you would like to attend.

Legendary coach Carm Cozza and Ron Vaccaro '04 call the action of Yale Football this fall on the flagship station - ESPN Radio (AM 1300) – for the new Yale Football Radio Network. The broadcast can also be heard on Talk of Connecticut radio stations WDRC (AM 1360 Hartford), WWCO (AM 1240 Waterbury), WMMW (AM 1470 Meriden), WSNG (AM 610 Torrington) and WDRC (FM 102.9 HD -3 Hartford). You can also hear the games on iHeart radio and on Some of the broadcasts also air on WELI (AM-960). Cozza, who handles the color commentary, is the career victory leader among Ivy League coaches and a member of the College Football Hall of Fame. This is his 16th season in the booth after a 32-year head coaching tenure during which he led the Bulldogs to 10 Ivy League Championships. The play-by-play is done by Vaccaro (follow @yalevoice on Twitter for Yale football updates), entering his ninth season as the voice of the Bulldogs. He has been covering the team since his freshman year in 2000. Vaccaro has won five Emmy Awards for his work with NBC Sports and Olympics and is the editorial director for NBC Sports and the NBC Sports Network. He has covered a total of five Olympics. His TV on-air work includes the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2009 World Swimming Championships and college hockey.

The Cornell, Fordham and Brown home games and all of the road league games can be seen on the Ivy League Digital Network ( Cozza and Vaccaro call the games from the Bowl, while the home team announcers work Yale's away games. The Columbia (YES) and Harvard (NBCSN) games are exclusive national TV broadcasts.

A recent tradition continues with Yale football radio broadcasts in 2013. Every third quarter, Vaccaro and Cozza are joined by a former Yale player on the Yale Football Radio Network. Ex-Bulldog running back Bill Primps '71 will be on during the season opener. Doug Johnson '74, an ex-Eli guard and center, is in the booth Cornell week.  Former Yale QB Chris Hetherington '96 (11 years in NFL) will be at the Cal-Poly game, while record breaking WR Ralph Plumb '05 is set for Dartmouth.

The WYBC Sports Staff, led by director Evan Frondorf '14, covers all games on and on AM 1340. Their coverage includes a pre-game show 30 minutes prior to kickoff and interviews with Tony Reno and different players each week.
The Bulldogs, off on Mondays, are on the field from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday behind the baseball stadium. Fridays are walk-through days either at Yale Bowl or on the road and times vary. Players and coaches are available for interviews with working media following the practice if there is no student-athlete scheduling conflicts. All schedules are subject to change. Check with Steve Conn at least 24 hours in advance.

There are three 1 p.m. games confirmed for this fall: Oct. 20 vs. Milford Academy, Nov. 10 at Brown and Nov. 22 vs. Harvard.

The Yale Bowl press box has a taste of New Haven with Yorkside Pizza & Restaurant serving slices, pasta and salad to the media on home Saturdays.

Pat Graham '01, a former Yale tight end and defensive lineman, is a defensive assistant coach for the New England Patriots. He is in his fifth season at Foxboro. Graham, a Waterbury, Conn., native, was a member of Yale's 1999 Ivy title team. Michael McDaniel '05 is in his seventh NFL campaign and third with the Washington Redskins. He also coached the Houston Texans and Denver Broncos.

Yale, which last played in the Golden State in 2005 at the University of San Diego, has another trip to California this season. The Bulldogs play Cal Poly Tech (San Luis Obispo), ranked No.12 in the latest FCS polls. The Mustangs are 1-2 after falling at Colorado State last week. The only two games the Blue has played on the West Coast were against USD.

"Inside Ivy League Football" runs all 10 Wednesdays of the season at 7 p.m. on ( ivyleaguefootball). It will be available on-demand via BlogTalkRadio and Fans and alumni can interact with "Inside" via its social media platforms -- Facebook (Inside Ivy League Football) and Twitter (@insideivyfb) -- as well as provide ideas and content for the show's 'Twitter Talk/Facebook Fodder' segment. Selected episodes will feature Ivy football trivia with chances to win Ivy League-branded merchandise or a gift certificate to the League's official online store at The show will be hosted by two veteran Ivy broadcasters, Dan Loney and Brian Seltzer.  

Be the first to know what's going on with the Bulldogs -- Follow @YaleAthletics on Twitter, become a fan of Yale Athletics on Facebook!. For more information on following specific Yale Athletics teams visit us online at

There are three significant changes in the Yale football program this season. One the fans will notice, the other two are less obvious. There are new Nike uniforms. The "Y-Dog" logo has been taken off the shirt and the stripe on the pants is nothing like the double blue stripes that ran the full length in recent years. The other two changes are in facilities. Clint Frank Field has a new FieldTurf surface, and the varsity strength & conditioning room at the Payne Whitney Gym has been completely renovated with an efficient training system and a synthetic turf track running through the middle of the room.

The following players were elected to the team's leadership council: seniors Beau Palin, John Oppenheimer, Cam Sandquist and Hank Furman; juniors Tyler Varga, Will Chism, Grant Wallace and Will Vaughn; sophomores Eric Williams, Cole Champion, Sebastian Little and Austin Reuland.

Senior CB Max Napolitano (West Lake Village, Calif.) interned with the Milwaukee Brewers last summer and competed in one of the famous sausage races. He wore the brat costume and finished second to former Bulldog punter/placekicker Tom Mante '10, sporting the Italian sausage. Mante, a graduate student at Vanderbilt, also interned with Brewers.

Yale's home opener vs. Cornell is Youth Day, Yale Family Weekend and Coach To Cure MD Day… The Fordham game is New Haven Chamber of Commerce and Walter Camp Football Foundation Day at the Bowl… Heroes Day and Yale Employee Day are the co-promotion when Columbia comes to town… The season finale against Harvard marks the "Fill The Bowl" campaign.

Yale captain Tom McCarthy '10, who works for Morgan Stanley and was in two NFL camps, was third at the 2013 RBC Decathlon, the competition for Wall Street's best athlete. Ex-defensive tackle Jake Stoller '12, also an NFL signee, had a strong peformance.

filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director