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

An Observer
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Date Posted: 12:41:45 12/18/21 Sat
In reply to: jerrylh 's message, "So just how good is Ivy Football really" on 11:29:47 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

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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

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

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


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

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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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