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Archive For The “Billy Boyko” Category

Lehigh’s Summer of Pro

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Lehigh’s Summer of Pro

During the football season, I’ve gotten in the writing habit of picking a “Sunday Word”, and using it to describe what happened the previous week.

I’ve been slack in getting this going this preseason, but the only possible word that can perfectly summarize this Lehigh football offseason is “pro“.

The NCAA’s big ad campaign for years now has been that “most athletes go ‘pro’ in something other than sports”.  And for the great majority of Lehigh athletes, year-in and year-out, this is still true.

But this offseason we’ve seen an unprecedented number of Lehigh athletes trying their hand at ‘pro’ ball – and Lehigh fans everywhere couldn’t be more thrilled or excited.  There are a lot of “pro” adventures to follow for Lehigh fans right now, and it’s damned exciting stuff.
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Lehigh In the NFL Preseason: Your Weekend Guide

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Lehigh In the NFL Preseason: Your Weekend Guide

It may be 21 days until the start of Lehigh’s football season, but there’s plenty of football on TV for Lehigh fans to get excited about tonight.

For all the information you need on catching LB Billy Boyko, OG Will Rackley and WR Ryan Spadola this weekend, just check below the flip.

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Boykopalooza

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Boykopalooza

Future NFL players spend their drafts differently. 

Some spend it in celebration with friends in the city, or surrounded by family at home.  Some of the big names have the cameras embedded with the players, awaiting with baited breath their reactions, or their expressions of relief.

But LB Billy Boyko didn’t do much different than he does many weekends.

“Boyko, the all-league linebacker from Northampton, spent Saturday working on cars at Maple Grove Raceway,” the Morning Call reported, “where his family is immersed in the drag racing scene.”

Working on his father’s dragster during “the season opener of the Sunoco Race Fuels Money Trail,” a release from the Maple Grove Raceway said, he “kept two cell phones in his pockets at all times,” awaiting the call from his agent about a possible late round draft pick or a late free agency pickup.

Saturday night, the phone rang with a call from the Raiders.
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A Most Exciting NFL Draft Weekend for Lehigh Football Fans

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A Most Exciting NFL Draft Weekend for Lehigh Football Fans

There have been many football offseasons when I’ve covered the possibility of one, or perhaps two, Patriot League players getting signed as free agents playing at the next level.

This offseason, we might see something unprecedented.

Four Lehigh football players – QB Mike Colvin, TE Jamel Haggins, LB Billy Boyko, and, of course, WR Ryan Spadola – all have an excellent chance at finding themselves in NFL training camps in the next couple of months.

One – Spadola – is a strong candidate for being drafted this Saturday.
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2012 Mountain Hawks of the Year

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2012 Mountain Hawks of the Year

Out of 128 seasons of Lehigh football, only ten teams have enjoyed ten victories or more, and the 2012 chapter of Lehigh football was one of those ten rare teams.

Most of the ten victories did not come easy, which, combined with the perception of a weak schedule, had to be the reason why Lehigh was the first 10 Division I-win school since the expansion of the playoffs to 20 teams to be denied a playoff bid.

That shouldn’t take away from the great accomplishment of this 2012 Mountain Hawk team, however.

There is plenty to celebrate from 2012, and plenty of good things to write about. 

The cardiac 28-26 victory at sold-out Liberty, in front of nearly 20,000 intense fans, before the Flames would end up being Big South co-champions. 

The heart-stopping wins against Fordham, Holy Cross and Georgetown, which all came down to the last play. 

And, of course, falling behind 21-10 early to Lafayette in the 148th version of “The Rivalry”, before roaring to a 38-21 victory and shotting out the Leopards for three consecutive quarters.

For this last post of 2012, we celebrate the wins one more time, and unveil the Hawks of the 2012 season.
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Lehigh Puts Eleven On All-Patriot League Teams, Two on All-Academic Teams

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Lehigh Puts Eleven On All-Patriot League Teams, Two on All-Academic Teams

(Photo Credit: Express-Times)

For their end-of-the-season awards, the Patriot League released their postseason all-Patriot League teams for both academics and athletics, and unsurprisingly, Lehigh athletes put plenty of athletes on both lists.

Seven Lehigh athletes made the first team offense and defense: senior WR Ryan Spadola, senior OL Mike Vuono made it on offense, and senior DT Sajjad Chagani, senior DE Tom Bianchi, senior LB Billy Boyko, senior CB Gabe Johnson and senior FS Billy O’Brien cracked the first team.

Senior QB Mike Colvin, senior LB Sam Loughery, junior LB Nigel Muhammad and sophomore OL Ned Daryoush all made the Patriot League second team, while Spadola and senior RB Zach Barket made the more important list: the Patriot League All-Academic team.

More academic awards and athletic awards await, but congratulations on these awesome Lehigh athletes for what they’ve accomplished.
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Game Preview: The 148th: Lehigh at Lafayette, 11/17/2012

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Game Preview: The 148th: Lehigh at Lafayette, 11/17/2012

(Photo Credit: Ed Koskey, Jr./Special to the Morning Call)

When you study “The Rivalry” as long as I have, the overall trends of Lehigh students, Lafayette students, the football players, and the citizens of Bethlehem and Easton break apart, and the individual stories from each specific instance come to the fore. 

Specific “game to end all games”, detailed game riots,  freezing games, or unusually hot games get broken out, sometimes breaking from the normal expectations of The Rivalry in general.  The Rivalry endures, and there are similar stories of seasons being made, or broken, or riots, or order, but occasionally games do have variation.  Not every Rivalry game is the same..

The story of the 148th meeting of the most-played rivalry in all of college football is probably more different than anyone might have ever imagined before the season.

For Lafayette, the story is one of unmet expectations, unbelievable tragedy, and, ultimately, they hope, redemption.  For Lehigh, the story is one of nerves, loss of destiny, and, ultimately, they hope, redemption.
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Housekeeping before the 148th Meeting

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Housekeeping before the 148th Meeting

I have some things to do before the 148th this weekend in Easton – namely, two weeks of players of the week (since I forgot for Holy Cross in my zeal to cover the Colgate game) and some links wrapping up last week’s game.

Something that has muted the party  this week has been the heartbreaking story of Lafayette QB Zach Zweizig, whose father, 56, tragically died from complications of a stroke earlier this week.

My thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.  I love “The Rivalry”, I really do.  But some things transcend it.
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Lehigh 36, Holy Cross 35, Final

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Lehigh 36, Holy Cross 35, Final

(Photo Credit: Jerome Gordon/Facebook)The term "Any Given Sunday" comes from the film by Oliver Stone of the same name, but it really comes from Steve Sabol and NFL Films, and the music and sentiment those films provided.  "On any given…

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Players of the Week and Press Roundup, Lehigh at Liberty

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Players of the Week and Press Roundup, Lehigh at Liberty

While it was a bit disappointing to hear from the Lynchburg News-Advance's Chris Lang that their paper didn't bring a photographer to the Liberty game that evening – the more to take of the eminiently less exciting Bowling Green/Virginia Tech b…

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