Rams Lose 35-20 at Penn
The injury report has become the most vital publication surrounding the Fordham football team midway through the 2011 season. The injuries have come in bunches and, now, so have the losses. Behind a 15 point defeat at the hands of the Penn Quakers on Saturday evening, the Rams have lost three consecutive games since besting Columbia in the Liberty Cup Game on September 17.
In our fourth edition of Monday Night Quarterback, I spoke with coach Masella about the direction of the Fordham Football team and what challenges have arisen through five games. Coach Masella spoke about the juggling act that comes with an injury-decimated defense, “Right now it’s so many guys out that you’re kind of putting your finger in the holes in the damn and just trying to keep afloat. Unfortunately we have some guys who are not ready to play out there and it’s not their fault.” Justin Yancy (out for the season), Matthew Sconiers, Khary Powell, and Kevin Carter were all slated to start on defense this season but all four have missed significant time due to injury. Coach Masella referred to Yancy and Sconiers as the team’s two best defensive players.
However, news did stretch beyond the injury front on Saturday evening and it was evident before the first play from scrimmage. While freshman quarterback Peter Maetzold had started Fordham’s first four games this season, it was Ryan Higgins who earned the start on Saturday. Higgins posted a 3-1 record last season as the team’s starting quarterback after replacing injured Blake Wayne under center midway through the 2010 season. On Saturday night, Higgins was 21-38, totaled 249 yards through the air, and threw for two touchdowns. Higgins joined us on Monday’s show and I asked him about how he approached each week of practice when he was the backup quarterback through the first four games: “Throughout the week in practice you have to be ready because you’re always one snap away,” said Higgins. He also spoke about the adjustments he made during Saturday’s game and then touched on the relationship he has developed with Peter Maetzold.
Finally, I got the opportunity to sit down with running backs coach Custavious Patterson who is in his sixth season as a member of the Fordham coaching staff. Coach Patterson was the Wide Receivers coach one year ago but has since shifted to the backfield. I asked Coach Patterson which group he preferrs to work with: “I just love working with young people and I just love coaching. It doesn’t matter what position it is,” said Coach Patterson. During the show, he broke down the general assignments for each member of the backfield and we got an overview of each of Fordham’s three most prevalent ball carriers this season.
Fordham will host their second home game of the season when the Rams play the Lehigh Mountain Hawks on Saturday afternoon at 1:00 PM. You can hear the game live on both 90.7 FM and wfuv.org beginning with the One on One Pregame Show at 12:50. Lehigh boasts a high octane offense led by senior quarterback Chris Lum who has thrown for at least 300 yards in each of his last seven games. Lehigh’s only loss thus far in 2011 came at the hands of the University of New Hampshire in a 48-41 overtime loss on September 10.