The Leopards Roar

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DREAM COME TRUE TELETHON RAISES OVER $100,000 – THANK YOU!

It’s not very often that I have a week with no broadcasts.  But, with the early exits of our high school football teams, that is exactly what happened last week.  So faced with either going cold turkey or finding a game or two to attend, I decided on Tuesday to accompany the Lafayette Men’s Basketball team to St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia.

Coach Fran O’Hanlon was kind enough to allow me to ride the bus with the team.  Fran is well-known in the Philadelphia area, having grown up there, playing high school and college basketball (Villanova) there, and coaching there.  And friends like 76’ers coach, Brett Brown, and former Temple coach, Fran Dunphy, amongst many others, were there to welcome the coach and retell many stories.

Lafayette was going for their third straight win, but their first over the Hawks in 44 years.  They last beat St. Joe’s on December 3, 1975.  The Leopards were on fire from the very beginning and led by 23 at one point in the first half.  Then they went into a scoring drought and did not score the last 5½ minutes of the first half and the lead was reduced to seven.  They had no lulls in the second half and went on to win 94-71.

This past Saturday the same Leopards traveled to Ithaca, NY and, despite not playing very well, they beat their third Ivy League opponent with a last-second three to win by three over Cornell 62-59.  They had previously beaten Penn and Princeton.  Their record improved to 6-2 as the players head into final exams.

This got me thinking that Lafayette athletics are on a bit of a roll.  The football team beat Lehigh on November 23 and stopped a four-game losing streak to the Mountain Hawks.  It took a last-minute field goal to win the game 17-16, but it was a sweet victory in game # 155 of college football’s most played rivalry.  With the win, the Leopards finished second in the Patriot League.

The Women’s basketball team is off to a good start with a 4-4 record, having won three straight before losing this past weekend to Monmouth.

In fact, the entire Lafayette Fall athletic program jumped six places in the President’s Cup Fall Standings.  Their field hockey, men’s soccer, and football teams all finished in second place.  The men’s teams finished second overall and the women finished sixth.

The President’s Cup is awarded to the Patriot League program that earns the most points overall for the year.  There is no question the Leopards are “roarin’” right now and the athletic program is moving in the right direction.

Much like going to St. Joe’s this past Tuesday, I am glad that I am along for the ride, too.

ABOVE THE EARS (SOME MUSINGS) 

  1. I know you know that New England lost at home this weekend to the Chiefs. But did you know that they had won 21 straight games (including playoffs) at home?  The loss, for the moment, took away their home field advantage for the playoffs.  The Pats are 10-3 while the Ravens are now 11-2 in the AFC.
  1. Despite all the replays and looks from every angle, it appears that there is still about five plays each game that have no clear-cut decisive outcome. If you watch game after game, I defy anyone to tell me what pass interference is.  Even when it goes to replay, the decision very often makes no sense.
  1. So which team is the best in the NFL right now? Is it Baltimore or is it the 49ers?  Is it still New England or maybe the Chiefs?  Do you like the Packers or the Saints?  I am not sure there has been a better example of “on any given Sunday” than this year.  With all the upsets, it appears anything can and will happen in the playoffs.
  1. You know by now, I have been a proponent of having an eight-team playoff for the college football championship. Ironically, it probably does not seem necessary this year.  LSU, Ohio State, and Clemson are certainly the best.  If there is any argument at all, it is whether Oklahoma should be #4 over Georgia or Oregon.  It hurts me to say this, but I think they got it right this year.
  1. High School basketball and wrestling begin this week and it appears, much like football, it is going to be a very entertaining year. Both the Steel and Skyline divisions look very competitive and the Colonial League is shaping up as interesting as ever.  Wrestling is always dramatic.  Get out to a gym, cheer your team on, or follow the action on RCN-TV.

GARY’S GUESSES (LAST WEEK – 11-5)  (YEAR-TO-DATE) – 132-74-1  (64%)

BALTIMORE

PHILADELPHIA

MIAMI

TAMPA BAY

GREEN BAY

NEW ENGLAND

HOUSTON

SEATTLE

KANSAS CITY

BUFFALO

OAKLAND

CLEVELAND

NEW ORLEANS

RAMS

MINNESOTA

NEW ORLEANS

 

 

Gary Laubach About Gary Laubach

Gary began his broadcasting career with Twin County in 1972. Twin County eventually became C-TEC and then RCN. Gary holds the dual role of Director of Media Services and Sports Director/Broadcaster. He currently broadcasts about 140 sports and entertainment broadcasts a year, and oversees the scheduling of all sporting events for RCN.

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