December 14, 2017

The Game: Harvard-Yale for the 128th Time

I will be at the Yale Bowl this Saturday along with a few of my Leatherheads of the Gridiron friends, Joe Williams and Pete Sonski, for the 128th Edition of “The Game”.

“The Game” is special to me as I went to my first Harvard-Yale matchup on November 25, 1967 when Yale beat Harvard 24-20.  My father and I were rope guards for the game and to a nine-year-old it was an incredible game and the most people I had ever seen in one place in my life.  We all know what happen the next year in 1968 when Harvard scored 16 points in the final 42 seconds as I could not believe my AM radio that Harvard came back and tied Yale 29-29.  I have been to many Harvard-Yale games over the years including the 100th meeting in 1983 as I sat in the next to last top row in the Bowl to watch Harvard spoil the anniversary for Yale, outscoring the Bulldogs 16-7.  Revenge was sweet in 1985 at another packed Bowl with Yale beating the Crimson 17-6.  At that game I was forced to sit on Harvard’s side with a group of screaming Harvard fanatics–such are the seats for “The Game”.  I take them where I can find them.

This year Yale has a chance to blemish Harvard’s perfect Ivy League record by beating them at home.  Harvard is 8-1 overall and 6-0 in the Ivy while Yale has been a disappointing 5-4 overall and 4-2 in the Ivy.  Harvard has a strong defense this season and on offense they are led by running backs Zach Boden and Treavor Scales with quarterback Collier Winters behind the center calling the plays.  Boden is explosive in my opinion while Scales can score.  Yale is led by workhorse running back Alex Thomas, a fan favorite from Ansonia , CT.  Quarterback Patrick Witt has a favorite target in wide receiver Jackson Liguori.  On paper it is a classic matchup with the edge to Harvard, but anything can happen this Saturday.

Harvard has won the last nine out of ten matches and Yale leads overall 65-54-8 going into the game.  I still have a special place in my heart for Ivy League football.  And this game will be no different as I can still remember that special November afternoon with my father back in 1967.  “THE GAME” is football at its best.