Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Ithaca College Football

While this blog has never had its own niche, there have certainly been plenty of extremely niche blog posts. This is one of them. On Saturday, the 9-0 Ithaca College Bombers football team faced off against the 9-0 Cortland State Dragons at Yankee Stadium. You read that correctly. Yankee Stadium in New York City. Yes, it's a baseball stadium, but they also host the annual college football bowl game, the Pinstripe Bowl. 

Cortaca 2019 was held at MetLife Stadium, home of the New York Giants and New York Jets. I was part of the crowd of over 45,000, the largest ever for a Division 3 football game. It was a unique experience for the game to be played in an NFL stadium right outside New York City, and I figured that this would be a once in a lifetime chance to see Cortaca played somewhere other than Cortland or Ithaca. It was awesome! Because that game was only 3 years ago, I didn't feel the need to travel back to New York City to see Cortaca again, particularly since I was going to be out of town the weekend before (to not see bats in Austin, Texas). Even though I didn't attend in person, David Boreanaz did because you have never seen the two of us together at the same time. Coincidence or maybe this blog should really be called David's Ramblings? 

The Bombers won the Cortaca game 34-17 to cap an incredible undefeated season. Woo Hoo! They also earned a spot in the Division III football playoffs and will face The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth on Saturday, November 19th in Ithaca. While I contacted the UMass Dartmouth football team and athletic department to help provide a preview of the game, I did not receive a response. Therefore, I'm doing this all on my own, meaning that most of the information is accurate, but I make no guarantees.

- Ithaca finished 10th in the final regular season D3football.com rankings. Despite finishing 9-1, UMass Dartmouth didn't even fall into the "others receiving votes" category of the rankings. EIther there is no respect for the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference or all the voters think the entire league are Massholes!

- UMass Dartmouth is not Dartmouth College, which is an Ivy League school in New Hampshire. I wonder if UMass Dartmouth hopes that people confuse the two.

- UMass Dartmouth is located in southern Massachusetts not far from Martha's Vineyard and about a 45-minute drive from Newport, Rhode Island. It's about an hour from Cape Cod and slightly longer to Boston. Looks like a beautiful part of the world though I recommend visiting in the summer and early fall and probably not in January or February!

- The school's athletics teams are the Corsairs. I didn't know about this name until about 15 years ago when a friend made a blog called Corsairs Affairs which included some posts about the Pittsburgh Pirates. Corsair is another name for a pirate. So while Wednesday, November 16th is Talk Like a Pittsburgh Pirate Day, there is no Talk Like a UMass Dartmouth Corsair Day.

- The Corsairs can score, putting up 42.1 points per game. QB Dante Aviles-Santos leads the offense with 294 passing yards per game, and the Bombers better cover WR Angel Sanchez who leads the country with 138 receiving yards per game. I don't know if leading the country is for D3 colleges or all college football.

- In looking at famous UMass Dartmouth graduates, I don't recognize any names but a lot of people probably know Carmella from WWE. Oh, Jim Perdue of chicken fame might have received a Masters from here. Actually, I take what I wrote back. I recognize one name and I'm sure the school doesn't want anyone to associate his time in Dartmouth with the institution. One of the Boston Marathon bombers was a student. Let's change the subject.

My guess is that Ithaca will be favored to win based on the rankings and the fact that the game is in New York. Actually, this doesn't seem like a fun commute for the Corsairs. It's about a 6-hour drive without stops from Dartmouth to Ithaca or you'd have to fly from Boston or Providence though the only flights into Ithaca are from Newark or Detroit. Is the team driving to Boston, flying to Newark, and then flying to Ithaca? Or are they flying into Syracuse through one of the three New York City area airports and taking a bus from there? Whatever they do, a football team traveling from Dartmouth to Ithaca doesn't sound like fun. Advantage Ithaca!

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