Tag Archive: Yale-Harvard game

  1. FOOTBALL: Yale set to host The Game in fall 2021

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    If Ivy League athletic competition can occur in fall 2021, the 137th edition of the Yale-Harvard football game is set to occur in New Haven.

    In 2019, the Bulldogs hosted The Game at the Yale Bowl, capturing a dramatic double-overtime victory over the Crimson in front of 44,989 fans. This November, Harvard would have hosted the 2020 installment of the rivalry on Nov. 21 in Boston. But with the COVID-19 pandemic putting a stop to fall-semester competition in the Ancient Eight, both teams and their respective fan bases are set to meet back in New Haven for the second consecutive time in fall 2021.

    “We’re going to be following our 2021 schedule,” Yale football head coach Tony Reno told the News. “I just think from a big picture standpoint, and from the perspective of all eight teams in the conference, if you’re going to change the league scheduling, it would create a lot of inequity in home and away games. So for the athletic directors to just reset it and aim for what the original 2021 fall season would have looked like makes much more sense.”

    Mike Gambardella, Yale’s associate athletic director for strategic communications, also confirmed to the News that the Bulldogs are set to host The Game in fall 2021. Ivy League Executive Director Robin Harris and Harvard’s Associate Director of Athletics Tim Williamson did not respond to the News’ requests for comment.

    The Ivy League Council of Presidents announced the cancellation of fall-semester intercollegiate athletic competition in early July, and the conference has not yet released an update on the status of competition after Jan. 1, 2021. The July decision left open the possibility that “fall sport competition would be feasible in the spring,” promising a decision “at a later date.”

    Marisa Peryer, Staff Photographer

    According to Reno, the football team has mainly focused on preparing for fall 2021 this past semester.

    “We’ve really just pressed the reset button because we would have finished our season next week,” Reno said. “So hopefully, in December, we’ll be back on track to play football in 2021.”

    Last November, the Bulldogs’ dramatic 50–43 win over Harvard capped a 9–1 season and secured the Bulldogs an Ivy League championship. Quarterback Kurt Rawlings ’20 led the Elis with 417 passing yards and 101 yards on the ground in a game that lasted four hours and 36 minutes, delayed by halftime protesters and two overtimes.

    Yale wide receiver Mason Tipton ’24, who hauled in a crucial touchdown for the Bulldogs with 1:10 remaining in the fourth quarter during last year’s edition of The Game, expressed excitement about being able to play in New Haven again next fall.

    “I’m not complaining,” Tipton said. “The atmosphere at the Yale–Harvard game was pretty dope. So I’ll take it, I’ll take that again.”

    Lukas Flippo, Photo Editor

    Although fall-semester play has been canceled, Yale student-athletes enrolled in residence have been able to engage in limited training for most of the fall. Phase I weight training has given enrolled players the opportunity to get into the weight room in order to regain any strength that was lost during quarantine.

    Punter Jack Bosman ’24, who is on a leave of absence, said there are weekly meetings for remote players to receive updates on Yale’s training and the University’s COVID-19 situation. He said the team breaks out into their position groups on Zoom, where unenrolled or off-campus students can discuss footage taken of the players enrolled. Bosman said he thinks a spring 2021 football season is unlikely.

    “I don’t really see us playing in the spring because it would make it really difficult for future seasons,” Bosman said. “Then at some point you’d have to have a back-to-back season, which wouldn’t really make much sense for injuries and postseason surgeries.”

    Bosman believes that starting when the players get back from winter break, the team will begin preparing like they would for a normal fall season. He thinks the coaches will have them in a regimen that is pretty much identical to other years’ postseason plans.

    Although the future of athletic competition remains uncertain, Tipton is certain the group will be ready for next season, regardless of when it begins.

    “I know the team,” Tipton said. “Whether we play in the spring or we play in the fall, everybody on the team will be ready when it comes. The guys have definitely taken advantage of the time we’ve gotten off.”

    After 136 meetings with Harvard, Yale leads the series, 68–60–8.

    Jared Fel contributed reporting.

    Kaitlin Flores | kaitlin.flores@yale.edu

  2. FOOTBALL | Bulldogs fall to Harvard

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    Harvard was a 33-point favorite over the Elis coming into the 129th playing of The Game. In rivalries like these, however, Yale proved that predictions mean nothing.

    Yale (2–8, 1–6 Ivy) stuck with Harvard (8–2, 5–2) for 60 minutes but ultimately fell 34–24. The Cantabs extended their recent string of successes over the Bulldogs, winning for the sixth straight year.

    Yale battled the Crimson to a 3–3 tie at the halftime break. The defense started the day on a high note when linebacker Dylan Drake ’13 sacked Crimson quarterback Colton Chapple on the second play from scrimmage.

    Although Yale was forced to punt on its first ensuing drive, the Eli defensive front was again able to break through Harvard’s protection on the next drive. Linebacker Will McHale ’13 downed Chapple 11 yards behind the line of scrimmage.

    The Crimson managed just two first downs in the opening quarter, but a strong showing by its defense limited the Bulldogs to just three first downs. Quarterback Derek Russell ’13 was under center for the first time since playing against Penn a month ago.

    Yale struck first with 00:21 left in the first quarter. Kicker Philippe Panico ’13 gave Yale a 3–0 lead with a 29-yard field goal.

    Kicker David Mothander responded on Harvard’s next drive, splitting the uprights from 23 yards to knot the game up at three. Neither team was able to score for the rest of the half, thanks in part to penalties on Harvard’s offensive line. Three false starts were called on Harvard in the first two quarters. The Crimson racked up a total of seven penalties for 55 yards before the break.

    The third quarter saw the scoring pick up, starting with 37-yard field goal by Mothander to put Harvard up 6–3 with 8:53 remaining in the third. After the Cantabs forced a Yale punt, Chapple drove Harvard 63 yards on seven plays for the game’s first touchdown. Passing for 28 yards on the drive, Chapple took it himself with an 18-yard scoring run at the 4:51 mark in the third quarter.

    Although Russell completed all seven of his passes in the first half, Yale’s offense was unable to stretch the field. That changed when Reno put Henry Furman ’14 back at quarterback. Furman immediately showed off his arm, finding a diving wide receiver Cam Sandquist ’14 over the middle for 46 yards on his first drive.

    Running back Tyler Varga ’15 then took over as Yale’s signal caller and found the end zone two plays later when he froze Harvard’s defense with a pump fake, then ran in to cut the lead to 13–10.

    A three-and-out by Harvard left Yale with the ball on its own 29-yard line. The Elis then opened up the final quarter of play with a 12-yard touchdown strike from Furman to wide receiver Grant Wallace ’15. Furman was flushed from the pocket, but he threw on the run and Wallace came to meet the ball for the score and a 17–13 Yale lead.

    Harvard took the lead right back in just 1:35 when Chapple finished a 5-play, 64-yard drive with a 32-yard pass to wide receiver Andrew Berg.

    Yale was unable to get a first down and punted, but nose guard Nick Daffin ’13 intercepted Chapple on Harvard’s 33. Yale battled its way down the field to set up third and goal on Harvard’s 2-yard line, then Varga rushed up the gut for a touchdown. Yale took a 24–20 lead with 7:07 to go, but the Cantabs were not done.

    Chapple broke free on a 61-yard dash, but defensive back Collin Bibb ’13 tripped him up at the Yale 9 to prevent a touchdown. Yale appeared to have kept Harvard out of the end zone when linebacker Ryan Falbo ’13 knocked down a pass on fourth and eight, but he was flagged for defensive holding and Harvard was awarded a new first down at Yale’s 4.

    The Elis paid for the penalty two plays later when Chapple hit tight end Cameron Brate in the back of the end zone to put Harvard up 27–24 at the 4:44 mark.

    After Furman’s pass was tipped on second down, Sandquist was dragged down for no gain on third down and the Elis punted on fourth and four from deep within their own territory.

    Harvard’s drive started off with false start to back the Crimson up, but running back Treavor Scales was able to pick up two first downs, the second going for 63 yards and a touchdown. Scales’ run iced the game by putting up 34–24 with just 1:08 left.

    Yale’s attempt at a comeback ended when the ball landed in Crimson defensive back Reynaldo Kirton’s hands for an interception.

    Varga led the Elis with 96 rushing yards and two touchdowns and Furman went 13–20 passing for 158 yards, one touchdown and an interception.

    The Elis lead the overall series 65–56–8.

  3. Forum: Yale-Harvard game shirts

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    This year’s Freshman Class Council Yale-Harvard game shirt will go on sale this week, but not without its share of controversy. Read perspectives in the News’ Forum:

    Kathryn Crandall, Guest Columnist | Freshman in Saybrook
    It’s a well-known fact among all Yale students. It’s printed on T-shirts, sweatshirts and even boxer shorts: “Harvard sucks.”
    Why do they suck? Who cares? That’s not the point. The point is they — the cold, calculating androids of Harvard University — are our rivals, academically and athletically. That in and of itself is reason enough. And so, it is our duty as Yalies to crack jokes, pull pranks and print witty T-shirts at their expense.
    But for the second year in a row, the Freshman Class Council’s original T-shirt design was rejected. The original shirt poked fun at Harvard’s recent, and embarrassing, cheating scandal, altering Harvard’s crest to read “CH-EA-TAS” instead of the traditional “VE-RI-TAS.” This design was rejected by some combination of the Harvard and Yale licensing offices.
    With this rejection, the licensing offices of Yale and Harvard are contaminating the purity of a beautiful rivalry. The point of a rivalry is to keep your rival on his toes with constant banter, relentlessly displaying how you are better than him in every way shape and form. That is the fun and the beauty of it all.
    And without a rival, there are no challenges. If we didn’t have Harvard, whose name would we boo? Whose football fans would we trick? Who would motivate us to put our heads together and create droll and slightly offensive T-shirts every year?
    As much as I hate to admit it, we need Harvard. We need their rivalry to keep us sharp. And Harvard needs us. They need us to print that shirt. They need us to show them that cheaters never win. And they need us to be a constant reminder that they need to do better.
    Besides, it isn’t our fault they give us so much material to work with.
    Nathaniel Zelinsky, Staff Columnist | Senior in Davenport College
    Yale’s licensing office (acting on behalf of its Cambridge counterpart) recently told the Freshman Class Council they can’t sell a Harvard-Yale T-shirt. Why? FCC’s shirt called Harvard “cheaters,” a reference to the scandal that rocked the Crimson campus early this year.
    Is this a suppression of free speech? Is the legitimacy of academia under attack? Is it a slippery slide from a banned T-shirt to McCarthyism?
    As you can probably tell from my tone, I don’t think so. Yale and Harvard licensing are well within their rights to prevent FCC from printing this shirt.
    I am a free speech advocate (or “nut” depending on whom you ask). And I was deeply troubled in 2009, when Dean Mary Miller prevented the then-Freshman Class Council from making a similar The Game T-shirt that called Harvard men “sissies.” Apparently the term is homophobic and violated Yale’s community standards. Many saw Miller’s actions, correctly, as censorship. She abandoned Yale’s stated policy that any speech, no matter how offensive, deserves protection (see the Woodward Report of 1975, Yale’s ur text on free speech).
    So what’s the difference between 2009 and 2012? Why is “sissies” shirt protected but a “cheaters” shirt is not?
    In 2009, Yale College decided it was in the censorship business. A select few in Woodbridge Hall and Sheffield-Sterling-Strathcona imposed arbitrary “norms” — and the logic wasn’t limited to T-shirts. Taken to the extreme, “norms” could extend to every aspect of Yale life. We could be told what guest speakers are within the community’s norms, what plays are okay and what activities go beyond the pale.
    In contrast, in 2012, a corporate licensing office makes a more narrowly tailored claim: This, particular article of clothing cheapens our brand. There is no “norm” based argument that claims to govern all of collegiate life. The potential repercussions are far less worrisome.
    This isn’t an issue of free speech at all — it’s an issue of a corporation controlling its merchandise.

    Want to contribute? Email opinion@yaledailynews.com