Keys to the game

Hold on to the football: In the two games the team has played this season, Yale has coughed the ball up nine times. An early interception and fumble gave Cornell all the momentum in the Elis’ blowout loss to the Big Red last week. In quarterback Eric Williams’ ’16 defense, he is only two games into his collegiate career and several of the interceptions have not been his fault. One resulted from a busted screen play and several others were the result of tipped passes. The fact remains, however, that the Blue and White cannot expect to win many games if they continue to lead the Ancient Eight in turnovers. Opponents have cashed in on Yale’s mistakes — scoring 35 points on drives beginning with Bulldog turnovers. Not only are turnovers taking away scoring chances for the Elis, they are also putting points on the wrong side of the board. Taking care of the football could prove to make the difference tomorrow.

Hit the ground running: If there is one thing the Elis have shown they can do this year, it is run the football. The offensive line has done a great job of controlling the line of scrimmage, and Yale’s talented backfield has taken advantage — averaging 4.3 yards per carry in the two games this season. Mordecai Cargill ’13 says that he is good to go after leaving last weekend’s contest against Cornell with a shoulder injury, so he will join fellow backs Tyler Varga ’16 and Khalil Keys ’15 in the Yale Bowl tomorrow. Cargill and running backs coach Larry Ciotti call the trio the “three-headed monster,” and they will get an opportunity to wreak havoc on a Colgate defense that has given up 5.4 yards per rush so far this season.

Have faith in Williams: Last week’s game was one that everyone associated with Yale football would love to forget — being beaten by 39 points is nobody’s idea of a fun Saturday afternoon. But one positive aspect that head coach Tony Reno and several of his players pointed to was that the team kept fighting, and Williams was leading that charge. The rookie signal caller shook off two first-half interceptions and kept his composure. He showed poise in leading the Bulldogs down the field even though Yale had trouble finding the end zone. For now Yale will have to live with mistakes, like Williams’ tendency to stare down his receivers, but he has shown flashes of good things to come. Williams has a strong and accurate arm, is a dual-threat with his feet and demonstrates good decision-making when he has the football. If Williams gets the support he needs, he has the ability to lead Yale to victory.

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