Thursday, October 31, 2013

Flashback: Villanova drops #9 James Madison

Last year. More to come on this tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What Villanova football has been missing

This season, the Villanova football team has been extremely streaky. The most recent streak has been perpetuated by the loss of its second best offensive player, wide receiver/running back/Swiss army knife Jamal Abdur-Rahman, who will be getting knee surgery this week. Without his dynamic presence in the slot and the backfield, the Villanova offense has basically been left to John Robertson's wares. While this has been good for Robertson's record-setting statistical line, it has not been good for the rest of the team, as the offense has become too reliant on Robertson. Also missing is wide receiver Joe Price, who was Robertson's favorite target last year, who has clearly been burdened by a back injury this season, and missed the Maine game as a result.

Injuries, a reality, and a bitch.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

John Robertson in historical perspective part four

Villanova players with at least 30 career touchdowns:

Brian Westbrook- 89
Brian Finneran- 34
Mike Siani- 34
Anthony Cowsette- 31
Matt Szczur- 30
Terry Butler-30

John Robertson- 29 entering Saturday

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Flashback: Hoops Mania 2006

Doing a G-Unit chant led by 50 Cent and Tony Yayo is of the single most awesome moments of my life as a Villanova basketball fan.

I'm sorry, but they could have Kanye (they won't, he's in Vegas) tomorrow, and it wouldn't come anywhere close to this, because so few people in that building had any idea what was going down.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Penn State and Miami have NOTHING in common

There has been a smattering of extremely butthurt Penn State fans on twitter who have been lamenting the fate of their program at the hands of the NCAA in comparison to what they perceive as a slap on the wrist that was received earlier today by the University of Miami for various NCAA violations stemming from convicted Ponzi schemer Nevin Shapiro's relationship with the Hurricanes program for about a decade. Now, I retweeted some of these people earlier today, and I still feel dirty about searching for those tweets.

The fact is that the situations at Penn State and Miami had nothing in common other than a now convicted felon. The harm caused by the administration of Miami ignoring Nevin Shapiro giving players money is not even in the same hemisphere as the atrocious acts committed by Jerry Sandusky, and the subsequent criminal conspiracy to cover up his behavior that went all the way to the top of the Penn State administration, which is why Graham Spanier, Tim Curley, and Gary Schultz are all about to go on trial for said coverup.

Also, Penn State signed a consent decree that admitted to the charges. They have no leg to stand on in this case, and their fans need to shut the fuck up and stop with the victim complex.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

John Robertson in historical perspective part three

NCAA division one quarterbacks who have both run and passed for over 1,000 yards in two different seasons:

Beau Morgan- Air Force
Josh Cribbs- Kent State
Vince Young- Texas
Pat White- West Virginia
Armanti Edwards- Appalachian State
Denard Robinson- Michigan

John Robertson in 2013:

1186 passing yards, 849 rushing yards

Saturday, October 19, 2013

UNH 29-Villanova 28: John Robertson and not much else

Today, Villanova saw a transcendent performance from sophomore quarterback John Robertson go to waste, where he led the team to two late fourth quarter touchdowns, the second one coming with only 69 seconds left in the game to put his team up by seven. On its ensuing drive, UNH marched it down the field and scored a touchdown with only 14 seconds left, only to follow it up with a ballsy two point conversion call. And thus, Villanova still has not beaten UNH in Durham since 2003.

For the game, Robertson had 255 rushing yards on 26 carries with three touchdowns, easily the best rushing performance by a Villanova player since the days of Brian Westbrook, as it was the second greatest single game rushing yards output by a Villanova player in program history. Unfortunately for Villanova, the inability of the defense to stop UNH at crucial times was also reminiscent of the Westbrook years.

Not much else was that good, as Robertson had over 300 yards of total offense over the next highest contributor. 

Friday, October 18, 2013

45 years ago in Villanova history: The Mighty Burner takes silver in Mexico City

Nobody would run faster than gold medalist Lee Evans or Villanova's very own Larry James until Butch Reynolds did so in 1988.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Jay Wright's most candid interview ever

On FOX Sports One with Regis Philbin. This is one of the best interviews with Jay I've ever seen.

Here's more of it.

In other news, Villanova was picked to finish fourth in the inaugural preseason coaches poll.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Has Hoops Mania become overrated?

I was a freshman at Villanova in 2006, when 50 Cent  famously and completely unexpectedly started the trend of major rap artists performing at Hoops Mania. This season marks my 20th of following Villanova basketball religiously, and despite the hundreds of games I've been to, that night in October, 2006 is easily in my top ten in person Villanova basketball moments.

The subsequent years have not been too kind to the event, from the 2007 debacle where hundreds of students were locked out in the rain, to the 2008 edition, which saw T-Pain put on an underwhelming set that you could barely understand. There have been highlights, like Rick Ross last year and Drake two years ago, but the event has lost its luster, because 95% of the excitement surrounding the event involves who is going to be performing that night, and none of it involves seeing the team.

In 2006, there was no anticipation about a performer, because we didn't know that there would be a performer. That is no longer the case, and Hoops Mania is a less compelling event now because of that. My suggestion to Villanova would be to have no performer this year, and make it strictly a basketball event, and make it so that performers are not a given from year to year.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

John Robertson's five touchdowns lead Villanova past unbeaten Towson 45-35

17-18, 182 passing yards, 32 carries, 150 rushing yards. Five total touchdowns. John "Pinball" Robertson is not human.

More to this tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Villanova-Towson primer

In 2012, the only conference team that truly battered Villanova was  Towson, who came to the Main Line and imposed their will, winning the game 49-35, their point total being the highest opponent point total against the 'Cats in the entire season. The loss was Villanova's second in a row to the tigers, who they had beaten four times in a row dating back to the 2007 season.On Saturday, Villanova will try to prevent that streak from becoming three, as they travel to Maryland to take on an undefeated, third ranked Towson team.

Unfortunately for Villanova, there is two things working against them. The first is that they are the road team, and games away from Villanova Stadium have been problematic for the good guys this season, as they have lost both of them. Also, there may be some lingering resentment among Towson players for being left out of the playoffs in lieu of Villanova last season, even though their misfortune was the result of an established tiebreaker procedure.

Villanova cannot make mistakes in this game. Turnovers, penalties, drops, mental errors and the like will not bode well for them, so hope they come prepared.

The game will be on NBC Sports Network this Saturday at 7 PM.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Villanova-Towson to be on national TV

This Saturday, Villanova travels to Maryland for their most difficult conference test of the young season, playing against a Towson team that they lost pretty handily to last year. The best thing about the game is that even Villanova fans on the West Coast will be able to watch it, because it will be on NBC Sports Network, Villanova's first nationally televised conference game since 2009.

The game is at 7 PM.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Villanova-William & Mary Highlights

The biggest Villanova regular season win in a while.

Meet Patrick Tiernan: Villanova Cross Country's newest Australian ace

It is only Patrick Tiernan's second semester on campus and his first season of competition for the Villanova Track or Cross Country teams, but the freshman from Toowoomba, Queensland has already established himself (emphatically so) as the top harrier on the Villanova cross country team, finishing as the number one runner in two of the team's first three races, and the third runner in the only other race. In short, the 19-year-old Aussie is establishing himself as Villanova's best distance hope since the graduation of NCAA 5000m champion Bobby Curtis in 2008. This weekend he finished fourth in a major invitational meet, besting several members of national championship contenders and race hosts Arkansas.

Keep an eye out for Patrick Tiernan.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Last minute drive leads Villanova past W&M, 20-16

John "Pinball" Robertson didn't have his best game on this hot Saturday afternoon. His first half was sub-par by his lofty standards, but he saved it for when it mattered most, leading Villanova on a game winning drive that took up more than five minutes of the game clock and gave the Bill and Mary Tribe the ball with only 28 seconds to go.

Once again, Kevin Monangai had a big game, leading Villanova in rushing, and really brought the team back into the game with his 54 yard rush in the fourth quarter, a career long to set up a touchdown by Austin Medley.

On defense, Joey Harmon had a big game with 12 tackles, Cameron McCurry had an interception, and Reggie Paris had a huge game ending sack that prevented a possible Hail Mary attempt.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Jay Wright on his expectations for Villanova's freshman class

I think Josh Hart can be a really versatile guy that can fill a lot of roles. I think Kris Jenkins is a really intelligent who has already improved his conditioning so that he can play at this level. He has a high basketball IQ. And Darryl Reynolds could help us in an area that concerns me the most -- rebounding. He's got good size, good hands, and he's a natural rebounder. He pursues the basketball.
More here.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Villanova-William & Mary Primer

Villanova has had pretty good luck against William & Mary in recent years, but that doesn't make the games between them easy to sit through. In the 2009 playoffs, Villanova's toughest challenge in the entire playoffs came at the hands of a William & Mary team that had one of the greatest defenses I have ever seen at this level of football. Villanova has won five of their last six games in the series at Villanova Stadium.

So what does Villanova need to do to win this game? They need to hold onto the ball, and take advantage of the homefield advantage. As Bill Parcells once said, "You are what your record says you are," and by that measure, William & Mary, at 3-1 is better than Villanova. A loss at this juncture of the season would be devastating, and running the table in CAA is basically the only route Villanova has to do anything significant in the playoffs.

Injury news: Peter Sotiriou will be starting over Ross Hall, who was injured in last week's game. Nice to see that the team will keep a redshirt on Kyle Wallace despite the injury to Hall.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

85 years ago in Villanova history

Leo Goodreau, the 19-year-old starting quarterback for the Villanova football team under legendary head coach Harry Stuhldreher succumbed to a broken neck sustained in practice 85 years ago today. Villanova would later name its field after Goodreau, and the field at Villanova Stadium remains Goodreau Field to this very day.

Video: Radnor Board of Commissioners meeting

More after the jump

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

John Robertson avoiding the sophomore slump

Through four games in 2013, Villanova starting quarterback John "Pinball" Robertson has been playing some of the best football of his career, outpacing his 2012 averages in both passing and rushing per game, while also being a more efficient passer, completing passes at a 65.1% clip, five percent better than his respectable 60.1% rate from last, and gaining a full yard greater per carry than he was last year, while also gaining more total passing and rushing yards on a per game basis by substantial numbers. His nine total touchdowns through four games means that Robertson has had a hand in 75% of the team's total touchdowns, an impressive total for a team that is averaging almost four touchdowns per game.

Obviously, his performance thus far in the season is not a perfect predictor of what will happen later on, but it's worth noting, because Robertson only got better as the season rolled on last year. One thing that needs to happen is that Robertson needs to take fewer hard hits while running the ball, perhaps that can be achieved by throwing the ball more often, or occasionally taking the ball and running out of bounds to avoid getting hit. A less negative consequence of Robertson running the ball with such authority thus far this season is that Kevin Monangai, Austin Medley, Gary Underwood, Jamal Abdur-Rahman, and Villanova's receivers will get more of an opportunity to contribute on offense, when teams start to key in on Robertson, given his ability to run the ball.

John Robertson is young, fast, throws a good ball, and is well on his way to being one of the most prolific offensive weapons in Villanova football history.