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Subject: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
jerrylh
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Date Posted: 11:29:47 12/18/21 Sat

I was looking at 4 FCS All American Rosters, first through third teams. There was a mention of two Ivy linemen, one from Dartmouth and one from Yale. No mention of Tyler, Mackie, Hill, or Perry.

The Ivies fare well in recruiting against the big name FCS teams.

After watching some of the FCS playoffs, it has become apparent to me that their rosters are loaded with transfers from 1A teams. We just can't compete with that.

While the quality of players in the Ivy League has improved dramatically in the past 5-10 years, we have to face facts that it is unlikely that we will be able to compete with teams such as North Dakota State or JMU.

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Replies:
[> Subject: Just because we can't win it doesn't mean we can't compete


Author:
Go Green
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Date Posted: 11:56:27 12/18/21 Sat


I don't recall any Ivy basketball teams making the NCAA championship game anytime recently either.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 12:00:33 12/18/21 Sat

Respectfully disagree. Since Ivy teams unfortunately cannot participate in the FCS playoffs, I like to see how they play against out of conference teams who also play top 20 FCS teams. Look at Holy Cross play a tight playoff game vs Top 20 Villanova and remember that Harvard dominated Holy Cross. So I would say that Harvard could hang with Villanova and likely beat them. Villanova lost to James Madison by one point. Then look back how Dartmouth dominated UNH in an early season victory. A few weeks before UNH lost to James Madison by two points. I would love to see H-D-P play against James Madison. I think they would do a lot better than you may think.

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 12:48:40 12/18/21 Sat

Correction - Villanova beat JMU this year by one point 28-27. And Holy Cross went toe to toe with Villanova in the FCS playoffs losing 21-16 in a very tight game. Remember that Harvard crushed Holy Cross 38-13. Draw your own conclusions whether Harvard could have competed with JMU.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Ghost of 1968
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Date Posted: 15:42:59 12/18/21 Sat

Absolutely silly to use comparative score, A v B, B v C, therefore C v A. Each week coaches prepare differently for the next opponent. Ivy League Football as a whole cannot be compared to the teams making the FCS playoffs, agree with the original post, and definitely not the teams advancing in the playoffs. Perhaps the league's BEST team would have a shot at one of the lower seeds.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 17:04:25 12/18/21 Sat

Have you been drinking again? Ask Holy Cross coach Chesney whether he thinks Ivy teams would compete in the FCS playoffs. His team was absolutely manhandled by Harvard and after the loss Chesney said as much. Holy Cross won their first round FCS playoff game against Sacred Heart, another FCS playoff team that is routinely beaten by Ivy teams. And Villanova was the #5 ranked team in all of FCS. Holy Cross played them even - see comments from Villanova coaches after that game.

Sometimes I wonder if some of the posters watch a lot of FCS games beyond the Ivy League. If you did, you would see that the top teams like H-D-P would be very competitive in the FCS playoffs.

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Ghost of 1968
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Date Posted: 18:07:47 12/18/21 Sat

So you think 3 of 8 would be very competitive in the playoffs?And this is based on comparative scores or one off games, very scientific data. I say 1 of 8. And how badly would the other
5 do? Aren't we talking about the whole league or just the three that have separated themselves from the rest? I don't drink.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 19:49:11 12/18/21 Sat

I actually watch the games. Did you watch Villanova play JMU? Did you watch Holy across play Villanova? Did you watch Harvard play Holy Cross?

I also don’t respect the constant ragging on Columbia and the rest of the Ivy League.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Ghost of 1968
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Date Posted: 20:08:27 12/18/21 Sat

A little sensitive, perhaps? The question was how good is Ivy League Football, right? How many skilled players in the league would make an impact in other Leagues that send teams to the FCS Playoffs? Your comparative scores analysis is garbage.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: We've Got THREE. How Many Do They Have?


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 20:23:48 12/18/21 Sat

Well, if we're going to compare Ivy League teams against other FCS teams which are winning or close to winning their own conference titles, doesn't it make sense to use our top teams in that comparison?

You're basically asserting that our weaker teams would be defeated by their strongest teams. That's not exactly a breaking news story.

It's only reasonable to compare like against like: Dartmouth Princeton and Harvard against their best teams. Besides, how many conferences can claim three 9-1 teams?

Maybe you should start drinking.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: We've Got THREE. How Many Do They Have?


Author:
Ghost of 1968
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Date Posted: 07:19:39 12/19/21 Sun

With most of those 9-1 wins coming against the bottom of Division 1 football. How many Ivy League guys have been drafted in the last 5 years? That’s an indication of football talent measured against others, wouldn’t you agree?

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: We've Got THREE. How Many Do They Have?


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 13:25:09 12/19/21 Sun

Harvard defeated a 9-1 team. Princeton defeated a 9-1 team. Dartmouth defeated two 9-1 teams.

No other conference can claim that.

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Huckleberry
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Date Posted: 02:32:44 12/19/21 Sun

Well it is true that comparing scores against common opponents is a waste of time for the most part, although it can sometimes be a rough indicator.

Columbia blows out Dartmouth. Dartmouth beats Harvard. Yet Harvard annihilated Columbia.

Harvard eviscerates Brown but barely slips past Cornell. Yet brown beat Cornell.

Penn blows out Bucknell, Bucknell beats Cornell. Yet cornell beat Penn.

It goes on and on. For all we know Nova would beat Harvard 42-10. Or maybe it'd be a close game. Impossible to say.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Ghost of 1961
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Date Posted: 10:04:54 12/19/21 Sun

You are correct, using comparative scores is a waste of time.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Calvin
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Date Posted: 12:19:21 12/18/21 Sat

JMU is going FBS next year, and NDSU has long been an FBS team in FCS camouflage. Each of them had only one loss. Few FCS teams can compete with them. I think the best ivy teams each year would be competitive, but we will probably never know.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 12:41:45 12/18/21 Sat

Jerry, you're asking the right question, but I don't think you're looking at the best data to answer it.

All American lists might be subject to bias against schools which are less well known, play in less prominent conferences or happen to be known for academic selectivity, which tends to be negatively correlated with athletic success.

The fact is, the quality of our football has changed dramatically since the explosion of financial aid around the turn of the century. And why wouldn't it? FBS and FCS teams face limits on the number of scholarships they can offer. Because of financial aid, we do not. What was once a disadvantage for us, $, is now an advantage.

Tommy Amaker starts off every recruiting visit with, "How would you like to go to Harvard for free?" Guess what? I could recruit pretty well with that although, unlike TA, I could not bring myself to fly to Minnesota a couple times a month to watch an eighth grader play basketball just so he can see me in the stands. God bless all the grown men who earn their living this way, even if it does pay them very well.

And look at how many players we send to the NFL. It's not a burgeoning pipeline, but it's not a trickle, either.

I think the best way to answer your question is the always challenging task of constructing schedule overlaps, as Two Cents has done above. As he spells out, the data is limited, but we fare well.

There is little doubt in my mind that, over the span of, say, a decade, the Ivies will produce six, seven, eight or so teams which would win at least one game in the FCS playoffs and perhaps go much deeper. In most but not all years, our champion would have been at least a 50-50 proposition to win a game.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Jerrylh
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Date Posted: 12:56:48 12/18/21 Sat

It is one thing to compete lower ranked FCS teams. Ivies were ranked in the top 25. It quite another to play a school like North Dakota State. These schools are not Holy Cross or Villanova. If you get a chance watch these top schools this weekend. BTW, how often do Ivy players get drafted. We can definitely compete with most FCS, but not the ones at the top

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 13:02:46 12/18/21 Sat

Did Villanova compete with JMU? Yes, they beat JMU. Did Holy Cross compete with Villanova? Yes, they lost 21-16 and had the ball on the Villanova 40, with under a minute left. Did Harvard compete with Holy Cross? Yes, they beat them 35-13. Could Harvard compete with JMU? Absolutely yes!

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Northbounder
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Date Posted: 13:44:36 12/18/21 Sat

https://www.myteamisbetterthanyourteam.com/path;winner=Brown;loser=Alabama;sport=CFB;year=2021;method=2

The transitive argument is one of my favorite in sports. I lean more on the "it's meaningless" side. But what a more lively debate scene for it.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Brady
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Date Posted: 16:12:48 12/18/21 Sat

Fair point. But I watched Villanova play JMU live, and Villanova was the better team. I also attended the Villanova - Holy Cross game and that was a battle. Villanova was just a hair better.

I did not see Harvard play Holy Cross, but from all accounts, Harvard was the superior team.

So I understand why people would say the best Ivy teams could compete with James Madison and similar FCS teams.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Diogenes
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Date Posted: 14:20:00 12/18/21 Sat

The question is: compared to what and why?

Ivy Hockey and Ivy Lacrosse are competitive with the best in the country because the Ivy schools want to be competitive with the best in the country.

Ivy Football is not competitive with the best in the country because the Ivy Schools do not want to be competitive with the best in the country.

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Bengal
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Date Posted: 15:51:11 12/18/21 Sat

Actually the number of college hockey programs is far less than college football programs including I believe in FCS. And while the numbers in college have grown, I believe there are significantly fewer college lacrosse programs than football. It isn’t just about IL policies.

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
joiseyfan
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Date Posted: 16:50:26 12/18/21 Sat

Ivy football is not competitive with Alabama and Notre Dame because we play college football and they play pro football.

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
observer
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Date Posted: 20:21:10 12/20/21 Mon

you think those teams are good, what about fencing, squash, sailing, skiing, rugby, water polo and archery!

The true test of whether or not teams are good from a national perspective is whether they can compete against a field of 64 (68) drawn from 200+ competing D1 institutions.

To this end, Columbia Men's Tennis is one of the bigger success stories in the Ivies. 264 D1 schools compete. Columbia routinely advances to the round of 16.

For comparison, the D1 level at the following sports:
Men's Ice Hockey: 59
Men's Lacrosse: 70
Men's Track & Field: 250+
Men's Swimming & Diving: 143
Men's Basketball:350
Baseball: 300
Women's Ice Hockey: 36
Women's Lacrosse: 117
Women's Field Hockey: 79
Women's Tennis: 264
Women's Track & Field: 338
Women's Swimming & Diving: 200
Women's Basketball: 351
Softball: 286

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
An Observer
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Date Posted: 16:17:57 12/18/21 Sat

Wow, some of you guys set some pretty high bars for our football teams. Of course, we are very unlikely to win the FCS championship if we have to go through North Dakota State. So what? Why should that be the standard?

By your logic, nobody should work on Wall Street unless they can get a job at Goldman. Why even go to college unless it's at HYP? That's ridiculous.

Ivy League football is good, quality football which more than meets the eye test for an enjoyable Saturday afternoon sitting in the stands. That's good enough for me.

Furthermore, the trade off between football success and academic selectivity is not linear. If we want to get much better at football, we don't just have to dumb down our teams, we've got to dumb down our teams way, way down. No interest here.

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[> [> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 17:08:02 12/18/21 Sat

Bingo!

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[> [> Subject: "good enough for me"


Author:
ivy guy
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Date Posted: 18:14:11 12/18/21 Sat

I agree with AO. We should not chase the unachievable.
I love Ivy League Football and the improving quality of the teams.
Ivy League football is high quality. Winning a game or two in the FCS playoffs would be a worthy goal.
But the caliber of athletes at the top of BCS (the recurring top 5), and the majority of BCS Power 5 teams exceed what the Ivy League can achieve without compromising academic standards and massive increases in football investment.
That does not mean that the IL teams should not be seeking challenging matchups against teams with high academic requirements,
For example:
Army, Navy, Air Force
Duke
Vanderbilt
Rice

Stanford, Cal, Northwestern, Michigan, UVA are a bridge WAY too far.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: "good enough for me"


Author:
ivy guy (correction)
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Date Posted: 18:16:22 12/18/21 Sat

But the caliber of athletes at the top of the FCS (the recurring top 5) ...

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: "good enough for me"


Author:
Ghost of 1968
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Date Posted: 20:37:03 12/18/21 Sat

Thank you for agreeing with me. Love your Ivy League football but keep it in perspective when it comes to FCS football.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
jerrylh
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Date Posted: 17:37:47 12/18/21 Sat

Lots of good discussion here.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Gp
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Date Posted: 18:59:42 12/18/21 Sat

Ivy champ would consistently win in the first round and on occasion make a run to the final 8 or even the semis. Like all sports, styles make the fight, so matchups would be very important. NDSU and other elite teams are just such different animals that it would be very very hard to ever progress past the round of 4.

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[> [> Subject: Colgate made the finals in 2003


Author:
Go Green
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Date Posted: 07:20:29 12/19/21 Sun


It's beyond doubt that the Ivy can make a run.

I understood the original question to be whether we can actually win it.

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[> [> [> Subject: "Shoot Low Boys, They're Riding Shetland Ponies"


Author:
Diogenes
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Date Posted: 09:21:11 12/19/21 Sun

Lewis Grizzard put it well.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: "Shoot Low Boys, They're Riding Shetland Ponies"


Author:
Calvin
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Date Posted: 10:18:31 12/19/21 Sun

Actually I think this line is from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, later used to good effect by Grizzard in his 1987 book.

https://cantbeatwritersblock.tumblr.com/post/144224554134/shoot-low-sheriff-theyre-riding-shetlands

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: "Shoot Low Boys, They're Riding Shetland Ponies"


Author:
Diogenes (Calvin)
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Date Posted: 10:28:11 12/19/21 Sun

Thank you. I didn't know that.
My other favorite Grizzard: "Elvis is dead and I don't feel so good myself".

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Two Cents
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Date Posted: 11:44:26 12/19/21 Sun

Since Ivy teams are not allowed to participate in the FCS playoffs, how else can you assess how competitive they would be, unless you look at how they have played top 20 ranked FCS programs or FCS playoff teams over the years?

Ivy schools always get hosed in preseason rankings and All America teams, because they do not participate in the playoffs. A kid like Estrada from Dartmouth never sniffed making an All America team. Yet he starts for a top 10 FBS team now - Baylor. Other Ivy transfers started for LSU and Penn State this year.

Division 2 champ Ferris State had 4 players from their 2018 team drafted and now playing in the NFL. Does that make them a better team than Princeton in 2018?

In terms of recruiting rankings, teams like Harvard and Princeton routinely out-recruit JMU and NDSU every year ie bring in a lot more 3 star talent than those teams.

Would the Ivy champion likely contend for FCS playoff championships most years? No. Would they be competitive and make a run every 5 years like Colgate in 2018 when they beat JMU in the playoffs? Yes.

NDSU is on another level from all FCS. They would beat many good FBS teams during their run over the last 10 years.

Would be interesting to hear what coaches from teams like #5 ranked Villanova think about how competitive Ivy teams would be.

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[> Subject: Re: So just how good is Ivy Football really


Author:
Huckleberry
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Date Posted: 19:50:10 12/19/21 Sun

Harvard also seemed like a big boom or bust team this year. The Holy Cross game, along with the Brown and Columbia games, were big "boom" games for Harvard. Just based off those games you would have thought this was a historically good Harvard team. Yet against Cornell and Dartmouth, Harvard was pretty damn mediocre.

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