It's Love's Turn

by David Sherzer | 10/19/01 5:00am

Prepare yourself for an ugly game.

Did you watch Redskins-Cowboys Monday night--perhaps the worst game in Monday Night Football history? That's what I'm talking about.

Columbia is really bad. And now, without Greg Smith '02, it's tough to say how good Dartmouth is. But let's be realistic. They're nowhere near as good as they were last week at this time.

Yes, Smith had a lot of weapons. And all those targets--Matt DeLellis '02, Damien Roomets '02, Casey Cramer '04--were a big part of what made the passing game so good.

But a lot of times, guys like DeLellis were making unbelievable catches because Smith was making unbelievable throws--the perfectly-timed kind that sail just over the shoulder of the receiver and are impossible to intercept.

In losing Smith, the passing game has taken a big hit.

Without a doubt, the rookie Evan Love '05 will require an adjustment period--especially after dislocating a finger in practice this week.

Love comes from Riverdale Country School, which plays in a high school football conference called the Ivy League (couldn't they think of a more original name?). I do not profess to know anything about New York high school sports, but I have heard from several people that the Ivy League is one of the worst football conferences in the nation.

Even if these people were exaggerating, I think we can assume that Ivy high school football in New York isn't exactly like Friday Night Lights in Texas. The linebackers were likely half the size of the guys Love will have barreling toward him in the coming weeks.

Still, none of this is to take anything away from Love. However bad the circumstances, the bottom line is that this 6-4, 205-pound rookie from Bronxville--who was not slated to play this year and probably not next year either if Brian Mann '02 comes back--is now starting the Homecoming game of his freshman year.

He's gotta be pumped, and as all the stats indicate, Columbia is a poor team. I don't care if they read this--they can cut this out and hang it in their locker room for motivation. Nothing will make them good.

So Dartmouth, despite having a horrible game last Saturday that left them feeling cursed, will win this game. If the Big Green shuts down tailback Johnathan Reese, it won't even be close. Say, 28-7 Dartmouth.

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