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Date Posted: 09/ 2/15 5:31:04pm Wed
Author: Raider Archivist
Subject: Cr, so how about the book ( or electronic media? ) codifying this great tradition ?
In reply to: cr 's message, "Re: This oral tradition should have a permanent future" on 09/ 2/15 4:26:52pm Wed

I truly believe Gate is entering a sweetspot in its storied history. It's a new era, not dependent on over glorifying the "Glory Days" wishing them on an evolving Div. I scene. Given the emergence of National Liberal Arts Colleges as a separate class of institution ( thanks in part to the NESCAC, Davidson, the P.L. ), Gate has a national niche that brings it out of the shadow of the Ivies. We ae in a sweetspot, trust me!

>>My interest in gate/East Coast football began for me
>>in the early 60's as high schoo fb playerl in the
>>Chicago suburbs contemplating where I might be a
>>student-athlete in college. I've had an interest in
>>gate fb and general history and have tried to fill in
>>pieces of the story as the years have gone by.
>>gate80's contribution to fulfilling this interest has
>>been wonderful as have Gate 63's memorabilia. Despite
>>the Ivy Envy that has afflicted the great unwashed not
>>anointed into the Ancient 8, gate has evolved into a
>>significant niche within in Div I sports among elite
>>national liberal arts institutions.
>>I am optimistic that this tradition will continue to
>>give Colgate its unique cachet, of which I'd love to
>>share. With gate80's and Gate63's help, why don't we
>>investigate having research commissioned for a book on
>>Gate Athletic History. It would be great for sharing
>>with prospective student-athletes, among other uss.
>>Who else is interested in this long term project ?
>>>The backlash against the 0-11 season, when Colgate
>>>vied with Prairie View A&M as the worst team in I-AA,
>>>resulted in the firing of Sweeney, the hiring of
>>>Biddle (and Dunlap as QB coach), and measures
>>>to help the fb program recover. In 1996, led by
>>>freshman QB Ryan Vena, we were a 2-pt conversion away
>>>from winning the PL championship for the first time.
>>>At the time of the 1997 Navy game we were undefeated
>>>in the PL (including our first win over HC since the
>>>ABC-televised win in 1982), and had lost a tight game
>>>to Army by a TD in large part due to a questionable
>>>roughing the kicker call. Navy in 1997 was coming off
>>>a 9-win season including a bowl win over Cal, and was
>>>hoping to return to a bowl game. They were led by
>>>Chris McCoy, considered the best Navy QB since Roger
>>>Staubach. (BTW, current Navy QB Keenan Reynolds is
>>>considered even better than McCoy.) I was as excited
>>>travelling to Annapolis for the 1997 game as any game
>>>in over a decade.
>>>The Raiders seemed overwhelmed at first, and Navy
>>>pulled ahead 31-0 in the 2nd. McCoy was unstoppable,
>>>and passed and ran for over 300 yards. In my memory
>>>our first first down didn't come until we were behind
>>>31-0. But then something strange happened. Ryan Vena
>>>came alive and could not be stopped. We had a long
>>>drive for a TD just before the end of the half, and
>>>Colgate continued early in the second half to score
>>>another 18 points. When we scored early in the 4th to
>>>make it 38-24, it wasn't outrageous to think we were
>>>still in the game as the Raiders had scored 24 of the
>>>last 31 points. Corey Hill had a great game with over
>>>100 yards in receptions, and Ed Weiss made several
>>>runs. Vena was terrific despite always being under
>>>heavy pressure, and threw for about 200 yards. Navy
>>>did not put the game away until a kick or punt return
>>>for a TD in the 4th.
>>>The most noteworthy thing I remember about that game
>>>was the lack of Colgate fan support for what I
>>>considered the biggest Colgate game in a decade
>>>against perhaps the strongest team we played during
>>>that time. The 7 losing seasons in 8 years, the
>>>16-game losing streak, and the purposeful neglect of
>>>the program for years had taken its toll. Maybe the
>>>oldtimers had seen enough during the prior decade and
>>>were too old to get excited again. I'm sure the 11
>>>consecutive Colgate graduating classes when the fb
>>>program had an overall losing record resulted in
>>>alums not getting as interested in following the team
>>>as generations before them had. While there were some
>>>exceptions where there were glimpses of past Colgate
>>>spirit - the playoff run in 2003, games against Air
>>>Force and Syracuse - I never again saw the enthusiasm
>>>for Colgate football among students and alums that
>>>routine prior to the gutting. In this sense I don't
>>>think Biddle and his players ever received the
>>>they deserved, and would have certainly received in
>>>earlier times. Later posters on this forum would
>>>ESPN and video games, but to someone like me (who has
>>>attended well over 100 Raider fb games), the dividing
>>>line was clearly 1995, after which much of the
>>>interest in the fb program from the majority of alums
>>>died. In that respect the efforts of Tony, Neil, and
>>>the rest were ultimately successful, despite the
>>>resurrection of the fb program under Biddle.
>>>brand and ccharacter had changed.
>>>The team gained confidence I think scoring 24 points
>>>in less than 18 minutes against a strong Navy team to
>>>get back in the game. This helped them a couple of
>>>weeks later when they played #1 ranked, undefeated
>>>Villanova in the playoffs. This was the first time
>>>PL champ was allowed to go to the playoffs. It was
>>>ironic that Colgate was the first PL team to
>>>participate, as Neil Grabois was bitterly opposed to
>>>playoff participation. After all, the Ivy league
>>>didn't go, so Colgate had to demonstrate its Ivy
>>>inferiority complex and mindlessly mimic what they
>>>did. Fortunately the presidents and faculties at the
>>>Pennsylvania PL schools were not so academically
>>>insecure and outvoted us on this issue, so the team
>>>was able to play. Colgate came from behind against
>>>#1 seeded Wildcats who included future NFLers Brian
>>>Westbrook and Brian Finneran, and were leading the
>>>game in the 4th before Villanova pulled away. The
>>>Navy game also certainly helped the team prepare for
>>>the 1998 rematch in Annapolis, where they started the
>>>game not intimidated but on fire.
>To Raider Archivist,
>I am from a Chicago suburb and my interest in Colgate
>was stimulated just as Yours was. In my sr year in
>high school Colgate played Illinois with Bobby
>Mitchell at rb. That really caught my eye and before
>I knew it I was off to Hamilton. Our incoming
>president appears to be a backer of strong athletics
>so I am very hopeful for the future.

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