Holy Cross Hits The Road To Face Brown On Saturday
Oct. 1, 2007
Game Day Quick Facts
The Teams: Holy Cross (2-2, 1-0 PL) vs. Brown (1-2, 0-1 Ivy)
Date: October 6, 2007
Time: 12:30 p.m.
Place: Brown Stadium (20,000), Providence, R.I.
Live Video Streaming: www.b2livetv.com
Holy Cross Radio: WTAG 580 AM, Worcester; Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Tom Kelleher, color; www.sportsjuice.com, internet
Brown Radio: WSKO 790 AM, Providence, R.I.; Scott Cordischi, play-by-play; Mike Wall, color
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 29-20-3
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 35, Brown 30; October 7, 2006; Worcester, Mass.
The Series With Brown
This will be the 53rd meeting between the Crusaders and the Bears on the gridiron, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 29-20-3. The Crusaders posted a 35-30 victory at Fitton Field last season, in the first meeting between the schools since the 1995 season. Overall, Holy Cross has won seven of the last nine games in the series. For games played in Providence, the Bears hold a 14-12-1 advantage, but the series is tied 12-12-1 at Brown Stadium. The Crusaders had won five straight games in Providence, prior to a 20-18 Brown victory in the last meeting (in 1994).
Series Quick Facts
Overall: Holy Cross leads, 29-20-3
In Providence: Brown leads, 14-12-1
At Brown Stadium: Tied, 12-12-1
Current Win Streak: Holy Cross, one game
Tom Gilmore vs. Brown: 1-0
Phil Estes vs. Holy Cross: 0-1
In Overtime: n/a
Holy Cross Against The Ivy League
The Crusaders have enjoyed a good deal of success against Ivy League opposition during Tom Gilmore's tenure as head coach. Holy Cross stands 6-4 against Ivy League foes under Gilmore's direction, and had won three straight prior to last week's loss to Yale. That mark includes a 3-0 record against Dartmouth, a 1-0 mark against Brown, a 1-1 records against Yale and a 1-3 mark against Harvard. The Crusaders' all-time record against the Ivy League stands at 99-133-9 (29-20-3 against Brown, 6-2 vs. Columbia, 0-5 against Cornell, 32-34-4 vs. Dartmouth, 22-37-2 against Harvard, 3-2 vs. Pennsylvania, 3-7 against Princeton and 4-26 vs. Yale).
Gough Steps Up In The Secondary
Senior cornerback Casey Gough (Hinsdale, Ill.) is once again among the top defensive backs and kickoff returners in the Patriot League this season. Through four games played so far this season, he has posted 14 total tackles with three tackle for loss, an interception and a pass breakup, while returning five kickoffs for 115 yards. In 11 games during the 2006 season, Gough totaled 54 tackles, eight tackles for loss, three interceptions, seven pass breakups and two forced fumbles. He was also the Crusaders' top kickoff returner, averaging 21.1 yards on 30 returns. Following the conclusion of the 2006 campaign, Gough was named first team All-Patriot League, while earning second team All-Northeast Region honors. He was previously named second team All-Patriot League in 2005, after posting a team-best three interceptions, 45 tackles, three tackles for loss and six pass breakups. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Gough has now totaled 161 tackles, eight interceptions and 22 pass breakups. He has also totaled 1,485 yards and a touchdown on 59 career kickoff returns, to rank second all-time at Holy Cross in career kickoff return yards and career kickoff return average (25.2 yards per return).
Randolph Leads Crusader Offense
Junior quarterback Dominic Randolph (Amelia, Ohio) continues to be an excellent leader for the Holy Cross offense this season. In four games played this year, Randolph has competed 105 of 193 attempts for 1,167 yards and nine touchdowns with five interceptions. In the victory over Georgetown, he completed 22 of 33 attempts for 302 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing five times for 22 yards and another score. Previously against Harvard, Randolph hit on 29 of 55 passes for 339 yards and four touchdowns, including a game-winning 40-yard scoring pass to senior wide receiver Thomas Harrison (Wilmington, N.C.) with 19 seconds left in the fourth quarter. In the season opener at Massachusetts, he completed 32 of a school-record 62 attempts for 296 yards and two scores without an interception, in addition to rushing for a touchdown. Last season, Randolph earned third team All-Northeast Region honors after completing 184 of 299 attempts for 2,237 yards and 19 touchdowns with only six interceptions, despite missing two games due to injury. Over the course of his collegiate career, he has now hit on 289 of 492 passes for 3,404 yards and 28 scores. Despite playing in just 13 career games, Randolph already ranks sixth all-time at Holy Cross in career touchdown passes, eighth in career completions and eighth in career passing yards, with his career completion percentage (.587) is the third best in school history.
Maher Makes Big Catches
Senior wide receiver Ryan Maher (Boca Raton, Fla.) continues to show why he is one of the top wide outs in the nation. Through four games played this year, Maher has totaled a team-best 28 receptions for 269 yards and two touchdowns. During the victory over Georgetown, he posted five receptions for 83 yards and a touchdown. Maher previously had nine catches for 75 yards and a score against Harvard, while making 11 receptions for 85 yards at Massachusetts. Last year, he led the team and Patriot League in receiving with 69 catches for 797 yards and six touchdowns. Maher also concluded the 2006 campaign ranked ninth in the country in receptions and 32nd in receiving yards. At the end of the 2006 season, he was named to the All-Patriot League first team and the New England Football Writers All-Star team, in addition to being a second team All-Northeast Region selection. Maher has currently caught a pass in 15 consecutive games, while posting three of more receptions in 12 straight contests. Over the course of his collegiate career, he has now totaled 101 catches for 1,204 yards and eight touchdowns.
Crusaders Dominate Turnover Battle
In four games played so far this season, Holy Cross forced its opponents to commit 10 turnovers, while giving the ball away seven times. The Crusaders have recovered eight fumbles on the year, in addition to posting two interceptions. Senior wide receiver Ryan Maher leads the team with a pair of fumble recoveries, both of which came while playing on the punt coverage team. Six other players have one fumble recovery each, while senior cornerback Casey Gough and junior strong safety Daryl Brown (Stone Mountain, Ga.) both have an interception. On the offensive side of the ball, the Crusaders have thrown five interceptions and lost just two fumbles.
The Last Meeting With The Bears - Holy Cross 35,
Dominic Randolph completed 30 of 39 passes for 329 yards and four touchdowns, to lead Holy Cross to a 35-30 victory over Brown at Fitton Field on October 7, 2006. Randolph set career highs for passing yards, completions and touchdown passes, with the most passing yards by a Crusader since 2002. The Crusaders opened the scoring in the first quarter when Randolph hit Thomas Harrison with a nine-yard touchdown pass. Brown came right back to tie the score at 7-7, as Joseph DiGiacomo threw a 28-yard scoring pass to Lonnie Hill. Holy Cross took the lead for good early in the second quarter, as Randolph and Harrison hooked up again, for a 29-yard score. The Bears were able to cut the lead to 14-10 on a 28-yard field goal by Steve Morgan, before Randolph found Frank Herlihy for a one-yard touchdown pass, giving the Crusaders a 21-10 lead at the break. Early in the third quarter, Kent Flanders intercepted a pass, and on the next play Randolph tossed a 22-yard touchdown pass to Brett McDermott, making the score 28-10. Holy Cross appeared to have the game in hand, before a lucky bounce off a deflected pass landed in the hands of Brown's Hill, resulting in a 61-yard touchdown pass. The Bears then added a 22-yard scoring pass from DiGiacomo to Paul Raymond to cut the lead to 28-23 with 8:38 left. On the ensuing drive, the Crusaders marched 80 yards on eight plays, with Terrance Gass scoring on a one-yard run. Brown was able to add another touchdown in the closing minutes to conclude the scoring. Ryan Maher led all Holy Cross receivers with 10 catches for 118 yards, setting a career high for receptions. For Brown, DiGiacomo completed 28 of 51 passes for 401 yards, but was also intercepted twice and sacked three times. Defensively, Dan Adams led the Crusaders with 11 total tackles, while Chris Nielsen posted three sacks.
Crusaders Show Outstanding Depth At Wide
In addition to senior Ryan Maher, Holy Cross has shown that it has a number of other weapons in the passing game, as seven different wide receivers already have receptions this season. Senior wide receiver Thomas Harrison currently ranks second on the team in receiving with 26 catches for a team-best 341 yards and two touchdowns. Junior wide out Brett McDermott (Mansfield, Mass.) has added 20 receptions for 239 yards and two scores, while junior wide receiver Jon Brock (Acworth, Ga.) has brought in 13 receptions for 173 yards and a touchdown. In addition, freshman wide out Josh Jenkins (Maywood, Ill.) has caught two passes for 17 yards, sophomore wide receiver Mike Frawley (Glen Mills, Pa.) had two catches for eight yards, and senior wide out Justin Maher (Milford, Conn.) has one reception for a 23-yard touchdown. Last season, eight different Holy Cross wide receivers caught at least one pass.
Defending The Home Turf
Holy Cross has enjoyed great success at Fitton Field over the years. The Crusaders, who played their first game at Fitton Field in 1903, have posted an all-time home mark of 347-164-27 (.670). Fitton Field is the second-oldest stadium still used for Division I college football, behind only Franklin Field at the University of Pennsylvania (opened in 1895). Holy Cross' best decade at home occurred from 1980-1989, when the Crusaders recorded a 41-12-1 mark. In the current decade, the Crusaders have posted a record of 19-22 at home, with a 2-1 mark so far in 2007. Last year Holy Cross went 3-2 at Fitton Field, to post its first winning record at home since the 2001 team went 3-2.
Defense Shuts Out Georgetown
The Holy Cross defense turned in one of its top performances in recent history in the 55-0 shutout victory over Georgetown on Sept. 22. The shutout was the third by the Crusaders during Tom Gilmore's tenure as head coach, to go along with a 24-0 win at Dartmouth on Oct. 16, 2004, and the 27-0 victory at Marist on Sept. 23, 2006. In addition, Holy Cross held Georgetown to just 65 yards of total offense and only two first downs. The 65 total yards are the fewest by a Crusader opponent since Columbia had only 65 yards on Nov. 1, 1980, while the two first downs are the lowest-ever known total by an opponent. Since the beginning of the 2004 season, the Crusaders have now held their opposition to under 300 yards of total offense nine times. With the victory over Georgetown, Holy Cross became the first Patriot League team to record a shutout this season. Through the first four contests of the 2007 campaign, the Crusaders are holding their opponents to 26.5 points, 15.8 first downs and 360.5 yards per game.
Offensive Line Continues Strong
The Holy Cross offensive line has been a key reason why the Crusaders rank among the top teams in the nation in both total offense and scoring. The line has paved the way for Holy Cross to run for 138.2 yards per game, while also providing pass protection which has allowed the Crusaders to throw for 305.5 yards per contest. In addition, Holy Cross has allowed just eight sacks in four games this year, while attempting 201 passes. Junior Chris Smith (Buffalo, N.Y.) is the starting center for Holy Cross, flanked by junior Chris Poole (Scituate, Mass.) and sophomore Aaron Jones (Springfield, Ohio) at the guard spots, and senior Dan Nolan (Pittsfield, Mass.) and junior Mason Olson (Stockton, Calif.) at the tackle positions.
Tradition Of Excellence
The 2007 campaign marks the 112th season of Holy Cross football. The Crusaders enter this week's game with an overall record of 571-460-54, good for a .551 winning percentage. Prior to the start of the 2007 season, Holy Cross' 569 all-time victories ranked as the 15th most among all Division I-AA schools. Holy Cross has had 31 first team All-America selections, sent 69 players on to professional football, won five Lambert Cups, claimed five Patriot League championships, and was named the Division I-AA Team of the Year in 1987. The Crusaders also played in the 1946 Orange Bowl, losing to host Miami on the game's final play.
Holy Cross In The NCAA Statistics
Four Crusaders are currently ranked among the NCAA Division I-AA leaders in various statistical categories, through games of Sept. 29. As a team, Holy Cross stands 11th in total offense and sixth in passing yards. The rankings:
Category Rank Player/Team Avg. Completions 3 Dominic Randolph 26.3 Passing Yards 6 Holy Cross 305.5 6 Dominic Randolph 291.8 Total Offense 7 Dominic Randolph 306.3 11 Holy Cross 443.8 Receptions 7 Ryan Maher 7.0 20 Thomas Harrison 6.5 Points Responsible For 11 Dominic Randolph 16.5 Third Down Defense 11 Holy Cross 27.8 Pass Defense 14 Holy Cross 156.5 Fewest Penalty Yards 15 Holy Cross 40.3 Scoring 23 Holy Cross 33.3 Receiving Yards 25 Thomas Harrison 85.3 Fewest Penalties 25 Holy Cross 5.5 Turnover Margin 26 Holy Cross +0.8 Third Down Conversions 27 Holy Cross 42.9 Field Goals 37 Matt Partain 1.0
Crusaders Among League Leaders
Several Holy Cross players are currently ranked at or near the top of the Patriot League standings in a number of statistical categories, through games of Sept. 29. Junior quarterback Dominic Randolph currently leads the league in passing yards (291.8 yards/game) and total offense (306.3 yards/game), while standing fourth in pass efficiency (115.4 rating). Senior wide receiver Thomas Harrison leads the conference in receiving yards (85.2 yards/game), while ranking second in receptions (6.5 catches/game) and fifth in all-purpose yards (85.2 yards/game). Senior wide out Ryan Maher leads in the league in receptions (7.0 catches/game) and stands third in receiving yards (67.2 yards/game), while junior wide receiver Brett McDermott is fifth in the conference in both receptions (5.0 catches/game) and receiving yards (59.8 yards/game). In addition, junior placekicker Matt Partain (Libertyville, Ill.) ranks first in extra points (100.0 percent), third in scoring (7.0 points/game) and third in field goals (1.0 made/game), while freshman wide out Josh Jenkins (Maywood, Ill.) is fourth in punt returns (6.8 yards/return). As a team, Holy Cross leads the league in total offense (443.8 yards/game), scoring offense (33.3 points/game) and passing offense (305.5 yards/game); while standing second in turnover margin (+0.8 turnovers/game), pass defense (156.5 yards/game) and punt returns (8.5 yards/return); and ranking third in total defense (360.5 yards/game).
Head Coach Tom Gilmore
Tom Gilmore is in his fourth season as head coach at the College of the Holy Cross. Gilmore enters this week's game with an overall record of 18-19, as the Crusaders have won 18 of his last 32 games. Last year he led Holy Cross to an overall record of 7-4, including a five-game winning streak (the longest by the Crusaders since the 1991 season). In 2005, Gilmore guided Holy Cross to an overall record of 6-5, with tailback Steve Silva earning first team All-America honors. On Oct. 8, 2005, Gilmore led the Crusaders to their first victory over a ranked team since 2000, with a 13-10 win at No. 10 Lehigh. Prior to his time at Holy Cross, Gilmore served as an assistant coach at Lehigh (2000-2003), Dartmouth (1992-1999), Pennsylvania (1986, 1990-1991) and Columbia (1987-1989). An Academic All-American at Pennsylvania, Gilmore graduated in 1986 with a bachelor's degree in computer mathematics. He was the Ivy League Player of the Year as a senior and helped lead the Quakers to four consecutive Ivy League titles.
Crusaders Have Three Captains
The Holy Cross football team has three captains for the 2007 season. Senior cornerback Casey Gough, senior free safety Obi Green (The Colony, Texas) and junior quarterback Dominic Randolph were named the team's captains by head coach Tom Gilmore following the conclusion of spring practice. Gough, who was also one of four captains during the 2006 campaign, becomes only the 10th player in school history to serve as a team captain for more than one season. Previous two-year captains were George Connor (1905-1906), Raymond Lynch (1916-1917), Thomas Lamb (1969-1970), Craig Cerratani (1977-1978), Ed Kutschke (1985-1986), John Aloisi (1998-1999), David Puloka (1999-2000), Brian Hall (2001-2002) and Steve Silva (2004-2005).
Crusaders Bring In Preseason
Several Holy Cross players earned preseason accolades heading into the 2007 campaign. Senior Casey Gough was named the No. 3 cornerback in the nation by The Sports Network, and also earned preseason All-America honors from both The Sports Network (second team) and College Sporting News (third team). Junior Dominic Randolph was listed as the No. 13 quarterback in the country by The Sports Network, and also received preseason Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year honors from Street & Smith's 2007 College Football Yearbook. In addition, several players were selected preseason All-Patriot League by Phil Steele's 2007 College Football Preview. Gough was joined on the first team by senior wide receiver Ryan Maher, while Randolph was chosen to the second team along with senior wide receiver Thomas Harrison, junior running back Mike Kielt (Southbury, Conn.), senior offensive lineman Dan Nolan, senior defensive lineman Adam Sadowski (Tucson, Ariz.) and junior offensive lineman Chris Smith.
Holy Cross In The Patriot League
Holy Cross began its 22nd season of play in the Patriot League when it defeated Georgetown 55-0 on Sept. 22. The Crusaders now own an all-time mark of 14-8 in their opening Patriot League contest of the season, with victories in each of the last three years. Holy Cross also stands 8-2 in conference openers over the last nine seasons, with the only losses during that span coming against Lehigh (38-20 in 2003) and Fordham (42-35 in 2004). From 1998 through 2002, the Crusaders won five straight conference openers. Holy Cross owns an all-time record of 61-55 (.526) in Patriot League action, winning five titles (1986, 1987, 1989, 1990 and 1991).
Holy Cross Picked Fourth In Patriot League Preseason
The 2007 Crusaders were picked to finish in fourth place in a preseason poll of the Patriot League's head coaches and sports information directors. In addition, quarterback Sedale Threatt of Lehigh was named the preseason Offensive Player of the Year, and linebacker Mike Gallihugh of Colgate was chosen as the preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
Rank School (1st place votes) 2006 Record Points 1. Lafayette (6) 6-6 / 5-1 PL 63 2. Lehigh (5) 6-5 / 5-1 PL 62 3. Colgate (1) 4-7 / 3-3 PL 52 4. Holy Cross (2) 7-4 / 4-2 PL 50 5. Bucknell 6-5 / 3-3 PL 31 6. Fordham 3-8 / 1-5 PL 21 7. Georgetown 2-9 / 0-6 PL 15
Crusaders On The Radio
All of Holy Cross' games in 2007 will air on WTAG 580 AM, the true sports leader for the city of Worcester. Holy Cross Hall of Famer Bob Fouracre is in his 38th season calling the play-by-play for Holy Cross football, and his 22nd year covering the Crusaders on the radio. Former Holy Cross standout Tom Kelleher, who earned first team All-New England honors while leading the undefeated 1987 team in rushing, is in his eighth year as the color commentator. All of the Crusaders' games will also be available free of charge over the internet at `www.sportsjuice.com'. In addition, WCHC 88.1 FM, the Holy Cross student station, will carry a number of games this year.
Holy Cross On Television
The Crusaders are scheduled to have five games shown on live television during the 2007 season. Here is a look at Holy Cross' television schedule for the 2007 campaign:
Date Opponent Television Outlet Sept. 15 Harvard WCTR-TV3 Sept. 29 Yale CN8 Oct. 13 Dartmouth WCTR-TV3 Oct. 20 Lehigh Service Electric Nov. 10 Lafayette CSTV / Lafayette Sports Network
The Holy Cross Football Show
Every Tuesday during the season, head coach Tom Gilmore will be joined by Bob Fouracre for the Holy Cross Football Show. The show airs live from 1:00-1:30 p.m. exclusively on the internet, with archives of all the shows available to those who can not listen in live. The show is carried free of charge at `www.sportsjuice.com'.
Live video streaming of all 2007 Holy Cross home football games will be available over the internet through Crusader All-Access.The package, done in association with College Sports Television Online, is available for a $9.95 monthly subscription. For details on how to sign up for Crusader All-Access, click here.
Scouting The Bears
Brown enters this week's game with an overall record of 1-2 on the season, and an 0-1 mark in the Ivy League. The Bears have been defeated by Harvard (24-17) and Rhode Island (49-42 in double overtime), while posting a victory over Duquesne (28-17). Junior quarterback Michael Dougherty has led the Brown offense by completing 62 of 122 passes for 904 yards this season, with seven touchdowns and four interceptions. Sophomore wide out Buddy Farnham has a team-best 20 receptions for 193 yards and three scores, while senior tailback Dereck Knight has rushed for 219 yards and a touchdown on 36 carries. Defensively, the Bears are led by junior linebacker Frank Nuzzo, who has totaled 27 tackles, one sack and two pass breakups so far this season. Head coach Phil Estes is in his 10th season at the helm of the Brown program, and owns a career record of 55-37. Estes has led the Bears to a pair of Ivy League titles, during the 1999 and 2005 seasons, and was named the 2005 New England Coach of the Year.
Senior tight end Ryan McGuire (Woburn, Mass.) made the first two catches of his collegiate career in the victory over Georgetown, including a 12-yard touchdown reception ... Sophomore tailback Nick Cole (Tucson, Ariz.) led the team in rushing against Georgetown with 89 yards on 15 carries ... Holy Cross was picked as the No. 25 team in the nation by Street & Smith's 2007 College Football Yearbook, in addition to being selected as the preseason favorite in the Patriot League. The Crusaders were also ranked 25th in the country by Phil Steele's 2007 College Football Preview, which named Holy Cross and Lehigh co-favorites in the conference. Holy Cross was the only Patriot League team ranked in the Top 25 by either publication ... For the first time since joining the Patriot League in 1986, Holy Cross is scheduled to play all of its non-conference games against opponents from New England (Brown, Dartmouth, Harvard, Massachusetts and Yale) ... Holy Cross' victory over Harvard was its first since 2000, and its first over the Crimson at Fitton Field since 1992 ... The Crusaders won their home opener for the second time in the last three years with the victory over the Crimson, improving their all-time mark in home openers to 76-28-7. In season openers, the Crusaders are 66-37-9 all-time, following the loss at Massachusetts.