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2018 Lehigh Football Spring Preview: The Offense

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2018 Lehigh Football Spring Preview: The Defense

According to the FCS record books for 2017, there are 123 Division I schools listed in the team statistical Rankings. 

Out of 123 teams, Lehigh was ranked 119th in total team defense, allowing 477.7 yards per game.

And the defensive numbers don't get much better the more you look.

Rushing defense, 117th.  Passing yards allowed, 89th.  Team sacks, 118th.  Red zone defense, 103rd. 

Total sacks in 12 games: 10, or 0.8 per game.  Total interceptions in 12 games: 4, or 0.25 per game.  Total takeaways: 13, or a little over 1 per game.

Though the final defensive numbers from 2017 are unable to be sugar-coated, nobody involved with Lehigh's defense is running away from the facts this spring.  In fact, they feel they are better than this.

"When you hear so much about your defense not being good," defensive coordinator Craig Sutyak said this week, "you start to believe it, and I think our kids started to believe it too the last couple of years.  But we're not going t…

Paterno Apologists Try To Attack Fictional Portrayal In Movie With Fiction Of Their Own

This weekend, HBO premiered the movie Paterno, a fictional representation of the two weeks covering the span of time between Joe Paterno’s 409th career game and his lung cancer diagnosis.

I watched the movie, curious to see how Barry Levinson would portray the events, and how Al Pacino and a litany of really great actors would put the whole thing together.

The movie had a Shakespearean quality to it, trying to make an interesting case study of Joe Paterno and an examination of two fateful weeks.  Like many movies, it took actual events, and the writers formed a narrative around it - much like Shakespeare's Julius Caesar wasn't based on the actual conversations between Marcus Brutus and Cassius.

Predictably, in their response to the movie, the Paterno family chose to attack the movie’s credibility.

"The HBO movie regarding Joe Paterno is a fictionalized portrayal of the tragic events surrounding Jerry Sandusky's crimes. Numerous scenes, events and dialogue bear no res…

Spotlight: Brad Mayes Using Spring Ball To Build For Chance To Threepeat

Lehigh's spring session is in full swing, and there's no question who the opening-day starter will be at quarterback, barring injury - that would be rising senior QB Brad Mayes.

Mayes had a great season last year, helping the Mountain Hawk offense to tremendous production again, picking up exactly where Montreal Alouette QB Nick Shafnisky left off after the 2016 season.

That doesn't mean Mayes is sitting back sipping an iced tea while his teammates are busting their humps this spring, however.  He's been busy.

"This off season was a lot of fun for me,"  he told me. "I got to take on more of a leadership role which allowed me to make great strides in the weight room. We had an outstanding leadership council as well make some great strides in equipment and gear, nutrition, and alumni partnership. Although those may seem like little things when it comes to the game of football, stuff like looking like a team and matching on Saturdays really go a long way.&…

Five Questions for Lehigh Entering Spring Football Practice

Lehigh's spring football practice segment officially starts tomorrow, ending an agonizingly long period of football inactivity from the end of the 2017 football season.

Tomorrow, the beginnings of the 2018 football team will take shape - a team that waves goodbye to WR Troy Pelletier and WR Gatlin Casey, but welcomes back rising senior QB Brad Mayes and some changes on the defensive side of the ball.

What sort of questions will be answered by by the end of this spring segment?  Here are five of my questions.

Agony and One Regret After Watching My Team Lose a Huge Game

I grew up in a family where the men didn't easily show their emotions, a character trait that extended itself to sports.

It certainly didn't help that one grandfather, a proud military man that stormed the beach in Normandy, had seen and experienced things that were a whole lot bigger than sports, though he enjoyed watching Major League Baseball's "Game of the Week" as well as college football.  It also didn't help that another grandfather, though a loyal corporate employee and Boston Red Sox fan, lived through a period of such baseball and pro football angst that there was little to truly celebrate except the Sox's latest collapse or broken dreams.  (And the Pats were the definition of mediocre.)
My father, too, has always been a sports fan but also didn't do things like swear under his breath at the TV, stand up watching the game because "sitting down ruins the luck", or speak in tongues because his favorite team snatched defeat from the …

LFN's Top Blog Reads of 2017

We're approaching the end of 2017, and it's been an interesting year where Lehigh football fans have experienced a multitude of emotions: anger; sadness; redemption, and, finally, joy.

As you all know, the Mountain Hawks came back from the precipice of a disastrous season to come back and win back-to-back Patriot League championships and back-to-back FCS Playoff appearances.

In that vein, I thought I'd share the best and most-read LFN pieces from last season, from No. 10 to No. 1.

Going through all my stuff from the past year, these were the pieces that really stood out to me.