April 24, 2015 |
VILLANOVA'S football team lost three times last season, by a total of five points. Quarterback John Robertson won the Walter Payton Award as the Outstanding Offensive Player in FCS. Linebacker Don Cherry finished second in the voting for the Buck Buchanan Award, which goes to the top defensive guy. Both are now seniors. If Robertson hadn't suffered a concussion in their first playoff game and missed the quarterfinals, which the Wildcats lost by three to Sam Houston State at home, they might have made a serious run at their second national title in 6 years.
February 26, 2015 |
NEW YORK - Before walking into the news conference Tuesday to announce that he would be Columbia's new football coach, Al Bagnoli spotted a Philadelphia reporter and asked, "What are you doing here?" The response to the former Penn football coach: "What are you doing here?" This was not a scene that anybody could have predicted, as Bagnoli acknowledges. Yet his return to coaching after 23 seasons as Penn's head coach is a story with Philadelphia roots. The road to Columbia began on the Main Line.
February 6, 2015 |
Andy Talley has been the head football coach at Villanova since 1985, so when he says what he said Wednesday about the 2015 recruiting class, it's worth noting. "I think this is as talented a group as we've recruited since I've been here," Talley said. Sixteen players signed national letters of intent to attend Villanova on Wednesday. For the first time that Talley can remember, he has landed three players - 5-foot-9, 170-pound running back/receiver Jarrett McClenton (Archbishop Wood)
February 5, 2015 |
When soft-spoken Jarrett McClenton arrived at Archbishop Wood High School as a freshman, he "just wanted to play and make a contribution" to the football team. He wound up doing much more. Headed to Villanova in the fall, McClenton capped his career with the Vikings last fall by rushing for a school-record 2,188 yards and 37 touchdowns while helping Wood to its third PIAA Class AAA state title in the last four seasons. In his last three seasons, the 5-foot-9 and 170 pounder ran for 4,536 yards and 73 touchdowns.
February 5, 2015 |
IN RECRUITING, it often comes down to fit. The way Villanova runs an offense, there can never be enough playmakers. Especially when you have the Walter Payton Award winner returning for his senior season in John Robertson, a quarterback who gets it done with his arm and legs. Still, every additional weapon you can put around him only makes him that much more valuable. The Wildcats think they're bringing in one such piece in Jarrett McClenton, a 5-9, 170-pound running back from Archbishop Wood who rushed for 1,700 yards and 28 touchdowns for the team that repeated as PIAA state Class AAA champions.
December 16, 2014 |
WE'LL NEVER know what might have happened, had Villanova's John Robertson been able to play in Saturday's FCS quarterfinal against visiting Sam Houston State. The redshirt junior quarterback - who already is the program's all-time leader in total offense and tonight has a very good chance of winning the Walter Payton Award as the top player at the FCS level - was a late scratch due to a concussion suffered late in last week's second-round home win over Liberty. Senior Chris Polony - who actually beat out Robertson for the job in both 2011 and '12 - got his first start in 2 years and played about as well as he could.
December 10, 2014 |
After Widener University was hammered 45-7 by Linfield College of Oregon in a NCAA Division III national quarterfinal game Saturday afternoon in nearby Chester, Pride coach Mike Kelly took a shot at the head coach of the Eagles, who had allowed Linfield to prepare at the NFL team's practice facility. "Make sure you put in the paper that we thank Chip Kelly and I hope the Seahawks do well tomorrow," Mike Kelly said. "He was helping them out. Maybe somebody in Philadelphia ought to buy him a map so he knows where he lives now. But, go Seahawks.
December 8, 2014 |
Villanova became grounded when it counted. During a turnover-filled performance, the Wildcats avoided miscues and marched 84 yards on 18 plays late in the game, all on the ground. Quarterback John Robertson's 1-yard touchdown run with 1 minute, 12 seconds left capped the drive, giving the Wildcats a 29-22 win over visiting Liberty in a second-round Football Championship Subdivision playoff game. Villanova (11-2) will host Sam Houston State, guided by former Rowan and Delaware coach K.C. Keeler, in a quarterfinal at 1 p.m. Saturday. "This is a team that has carried us through the rough spots, especially when you come up against a team like Liberty who are as good a team as we played this year," Villanova coach Andy Talley said.
December 5, 2014 |
IN 2009 and '10, Villanova went 6-1 in the FCS playoffs, beating three No. 1 teams, two of them on the road and another at a neutral site in the 2009 national-title game. The Wildcats have played once in the postseason since then, losing at Stony Brook in an NCAA opener 2 years ago. Only two redshirt seniors, center Ross Hall and running back Austin Medley, were on the 2010 team. Tomorrow afternoon, the Wildcats (10-2), who had an opening bye, host Liberty (9-4) in the second round.
November 16, 2014 |
Two carries by a walk-on running back in the final minute of Villanova's convincing, 48-31 Colonial Athletic Association win over visiting Albany set off verbal volleys between Albany coach Greg Gattuso and his counterpart, Villanova's Andy Talley. After Albany's Brian Parker scored on a 25-yard pass from quarterback Will Fiacchi for the final touchdown of the game with 49 seconds remaining, Villanova had one last possession after downing the ensuing kickoff on its own 25-yard line.