It hasn't mattered that Fordham has had Joe Moorhead, Andrew Breiner, or Joe Conlin, or whether Lehigh was gunning for a Patriot League title, or not - during that time, Fordham has done only one thing consistently, and that's beat Lehigh.
Granted, during many of those years, Fordham has some all-time teams, with UConn transfer QB Michael Nebrich, current Arizona Cardinal RB Chase Edmonds, and a cast of terrific Patriot League players too numerous to mention. But then again, during Lehigh's last Patriot League title year of 2017, fourth-string RB D'Angelo Palladino ran for almost 300 yards on the Mountain Hawk defense for a 45-35 win, something the Lehigh seniors remember all too painfully well.
In a year of lowlights, last year's 43-14 loss to Fordham for head coach Joe Conlin's first win as Fordham head coach really stood out to me as a particularly bad loss where the Mountain Hawks seemed to completely bottom out. I don't often say games are over at the coin flip, but I knew Lehigh was done the second they came back from midfield.
There were some truly epic losses last season - 66-7 to Princeton stands out, of course - but you could argue that expectations against Princeton, Villanova and even Colgate were very low. The Fordham game, however, was winnable. It was a game between winless teams, and I predicted Lehigh would win. "Lehigh has too much talent not to win this game," I said in a moment of being stupendously wrong.
Of the five losses in the last six games in the series, the first few were a result of a battle between teams with equal talent, but in the last two losses, there was a serious enthusiasm deficit, and it showed. Both Fordham and Lehigh struggled the last two years, but having attended both games, the Rams simply wanted it more.
Read more »