Archive For The “Ray Priore” Category

Penn At Lehigh Game Breakdown and Fearless Prediction: How Much Do We Really Know About The Quakers?

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Penn At Lehigh Game Breakdown and Fearless Prediction: How Much Do We Really Know About The Quakers?

(Photo Credit: The Daily Pennsylvanian)

We break down the Penn game – and we give our fearless prediction, below the flip.

Last week, head coach Andy Coen made a big deal about the many changes Yale made to their approach on both offense and defense.  Penn will not have the same element of surprise this week – to some degree.

Certainly Penn head coach Ray Priore, who has his main staff intact from last year with offensive coordinator John Reagan and defensive coordinator Bob Benson, will likely have a similar approach to what they want to do on both sides of the ball from last season – after all, they were Ivy League co-champions.

But last week wasn’t a normal type of opener for the Quakers.

Playing a Division II school for the first time in program history, Division II Ohio Dominican allowed Penn to play a sort-of experimental setup.  Though Penn got a win that counts in the standings just like any other win, 42-24, using it as a hard and fast rule on how they will come out against Lehigh might be a big mistake.

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Penn At Lehigh Game Preview: A Potential Big-Time Receiving Show Might Feature Watson vs. Pelletier

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Penn At Lehigh Game Preview: A Potential Big-Time Receiving Show Might Feature Watson vs. Pelletier

(Photo Credit: Alex Fisher/The Daily Pennsylvanian)

Both Penn head coach Ray Priore and Lehigh head coach Andy Coen aren’t necessarily focused on the numbers and the exploits of individual members of their offense.

Priore, focused on finally beating Lehigh for the first time in his head coaching tenure, and Coen, trying to right the ship after a very shaky 0-3 start, have different things to worry about.

But this weekend’s affair at Murray Goodman, if the past is any guide, could have the potential of a highlight reel of tremendous catches by some receivers that are getting looks by NFL teams.

Twice before Penn WR Justin Watson and Lehigh WR Troy Pelletier have played against each other, and both times Watson and Pelletier have lit up the opposing secondaries for some tremendous catches and some amazing numbers.

For Penn, it’s allegedly about building off the win over Division II Ohio Dominican last week.  For Lehigh, it’s supposed to be about getting their first win, and getting some positive momentum back in their season.  But for fans, there’s definitely the potential of an offensive circus this weekend that could be immensely entertaining.


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Know Your 2017 Opponents: Penn

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Know Your 2017 Opponents: Penn

Last season, there were two iconic games that set the tone for the Lehigh football season – one a tough loss, the other a tough victory.

The first iconic moment was simply called “the Monmouth game” – the season-opening game where the Mountain Hawks started out slow, allowed the other Hawks to build up a double-digit lead, and after a furious comeback, Lehigh came up just short.  Lehigh had multiple opportunities to seize control – but didn’t.

It threatened to become the narrative that defined the season – that is, until the second iconic game, which was simply called “the Penn game”, and also broke down to a specific moment – the end of the first half.
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Lehigh At Penn Narrative Street: The Franklin Field Hex

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Lehigh At Penn Narrative Street: The Franklin Field Hex

Saturday’s game is a personal landmark for head coach Andy Coen: it marks the first time he’s coached a Lehigh team at Penn since he was hired there from Al Bagnoli‘s staff back in December of 2005.

He’ll be facing off against another former Bagnoli assistant coach, Ray Priore, who was a defensive coordinator at Penn when Andy was an offensive coordinator there.

Franklin Field, then, becomes one of the big #NarrativeStreet storylines going into Saturday, and for Lehigh, not a good reason.

Since 1895, when the enormous field was built in downtown Philadelphia, Lehigh has won exactly four times at the iconic venue, and the overall Brown and White record there is 4-28.  Along the way, among the many losses by Lehigh there, came one recent one in particular that snapped a long Lehigh regular-season winning streak.
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Lehigh At Penn Game Preview: "Our Kids Remember", Priore Says, That They "Tattooed Us Real Good"

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Lehigh At Penn Game Preview: "Our Kids Remember", Priore Says, That They "Tattooed Us Real Good"

(Photo Credit: Pat Goodridge/Daily Pennsylvanian)

“[We’re] trying not to over-plan for Lehigh,” Penn head coach Ray Priore said in his first Penn coaches’ teleconference of the year.  “And the kids are very focused.  We got off to last years’ start 1-3, our first loss was to Lehigh, and they tattooed us pretty good up there, so our kids remember that…

If there was any doubt that the Penn players had somehow forgotten the way they kicked off the Ray Priore era – that they had forgotten that humbling beginning to their Ivy League championship season from last year – any doubt of that was easily erased by the easy way that “so our kids remember that” uttered from Priore’s lips at the press conference.

College football head coaches generally don’t like their opponents lying in wait for them for months upon months upon months.  They prefer to sneak into town competing as lightly-regarded underdogs, preferably playing a “scrappy, fundamental game” (whatever that means), and escaping town with a character-building win and then heading home on the bus.

Head coach Andy Coen and the rest of the Mountain Hawks will definitely not have that luxury heading down to Franklin field this weekend.  They’re going to have a riled-up, laying-in-wait Quaker team that are favored to repeat as Ivy League champions.

“Our kids remember that.”


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Know Your 2016 Opponents: Penn

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Know Your 2016 Opponents: Penn

We continue the series “Know Your 2016 Opponents” a mere 9 (!) days away from the opening of the 2016 football season.

This might be a good time, for your reading pleasure, to remind you that these are modified with some more awesome Lehigh information from the originals over at The College Sports Journal.

It’s also a good time to remind you that I already have written a bunch of these:

Bucknell
Georgetown
Fordham
Holy Cross
Lafayette
Princeton
Yale

To come: Colgate, Villanova, and, of course Monmouth, the season opener on September 3rd.  And also, this preview of Penn.  Below the flip.
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Game Breakdown, Penn at Lehigh, 9/19/2015

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Game Breakdown, Penn at Lehigh, 9/19/2015

We break down the Penn game – and we give our fearless prediction, below the flip.

A lot has been made this week of Lehigh facing off against an Ivy team playing in their first game.  It’s a fairly unique feature of FCS and the Patriot League, where Ivy League schools are frequently a part of the out-of-conference menu and the Ivy League teams, who choose to start their football season in mid-September, need some out-of-conference teams to begin the season.

It does certainly pose a challenge in certain respects.  A team playing in their first game is freshest, less injured, and can surprise a team like it can in no other way the rest of the season – there is no game film really to study.  On the other hand, teams playing in their first game are generally also sloppy, and need time to adapt to the speed of football.  It is a double-edged sword.

In his Lehigh head coaching career, Andy Coen has been 5-4 in such games.  Generally, oddly enough, they tend to be a good barometer for the rest of their seasons.

In seven of the nine games, and every game since 2008, a win in this game has equaled a winning season for Lehigh.  A loss has equaled a losing season.

Last season, Lehigh lost a frustrating, heartbreaking game to Yale, 54-43, and finished 3-8 on the year.

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Game Preview: Penn at Lehigh, 9/19/2015

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Game Preview: Penn at Lehigh, 9/19/2015

Some college football opponents, no matter how many games between actual meetings, feel like backyard brawls.

Such is the case with the Penn game this weekend.

On paper, it’s been twelve years since Lehigh has faced off against Penn.  The head coach in that game in 2003, Al Bagnoli, retired just last season, only to “unretire” at Columbia in an effort to turn around the moribund Lion program desperate to distance themselves from the Pete Mangurian error era.

On the surface, it would seem like much has changed – that little would remain from the remnants of that 2003 game in terms of links between the two schools.

But you’d be wrong.

When you look at this upcoming Lehigh and Penn game, you’ll see a lot of faces – old and new – that show that this rivalry – with a little r – is rekindling itself at exactly the right time.
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Know Your 2015 Opponents: Penn

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Know Your 2015 Opponents: Penn

Lehigh’s relationship with the schools of the Ivy League go all the way back to the 1880s.

Yes, really.

In 1885, Lehigh’s fledgling football team opened the season with the University of Pennsylvania, who throttled the Brown and White 54-0.

1887 was the year that Princeton first squared off against Lehigh, throttling them 80-0

And it would be 1890 when Yale first hosted Lehigh, 26-0 winners.

These three traditional Ivy League football opponents appear on Lehigh’s football schedule for 2015 and will be a critical litmus test for this your Mountain Hawk football team.

But one opponent stands out more because of the fact that Lehigh hasn’t played them in more than a decade.

We’re going to be talking today about Penn, a rival (with a little r) that hasn’t faced off against Lehigh in over a decade.

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