Yale may be in the midst of fall break this weekend, but the Yale football team is marching on, continuing its quest for an Ivy League championship this weekend with a home contest against conference foe Penn.
The Elis (4–1, 1–1 Ivy) enter as the likely favorites over the Quakers (1–4, 1–1 Ivy), who were winless until their victory last week over a deteriorating Columbia program that has not won a game since 2012. But reasons remain for the Bulldogs to be wary of the 2012 Ivy League champions.Now entering perhaps the most important five-game stretch of its season, Penn has likely set a target on Yale as a chance to turn its season around in head coach Al Bagnoli’s final year. And the Quakers have momentum coming into the game, as the 31–7 victory last week was the first time that Penn tied together strong performances on both sides of the ball.A similar Penn squad defeated Yale 28–17 last year at Franklin Field, when both quarterback Hank Furman ’14 and running back Tyler Varga ’15 were out due to injury.

The Quakers now face a completely different team. Varga is back and looking as strong as ever, and quarterback Morgan Roberts ’16 — who made his first career start in that loss — has since emerged as this year’s top passer in the Ivy League. Roberts is also the third ranked quarterback in the nation.

The contest is shaping up to be an offensive battle, as every game at the Yale Bowl has been in 2014. The Eli and Quaker defenses are sixth and seventh in the Ancient Eight with 33.6 and 34.6 points allowed per game, respectively, and will likely continue that trend against strong offenses on both sides.

Yale comes in averaging 46.0 points on the offensive side — the most of all 124 Football Championship Subdivision teams. The Quakers, meanwhile, matched their best offensive performance of the season last week, and they will come into the Yale Bowl even stronger with the return of running back Kyle Wilcox from injury.

Assuming the Elis can keep up their offensive attack, the key to victory will be limiting the damage of Penn’s offense, which has seen strong performances at various points this season.

Penn’s rushing attack proved deadly last week against Columbia with 276 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. Wilcox’s presence will only add to that threat.

Quarterback Alex Torgersen, meanwhile, ranks third in the Ivy League with 252 passing yards per game as the youngest starting quarterback in the conference. The sophomore continues to improve week to week, having thrown for 350 and 316 yards against Dartmouth and Fordham, respectively, and having played a full game with no interceptions for the first time last week.

Kickoff is slated for 1:30 p.m at the Yale Bowl. The game will be broadcast on national television via NBC Sports Network.