The 2012 Raiders Will Keep On Running
This is the fourth of seven articles that preview the 2012 Patriot League teams. They are in the inverse order of the preseason poll voting by Patriot League football head coaches and sports information directors, who did not include their own school in the selections.
Fordham was not included in the poll because it will not be able to compete for the Patriot League championship and NCAA automatic bid in 2012, and its games against League members will not count towards the final standings for either team.
The Colgate Raiders finished the 2011 season with a respectable record of 5-6, but they were just 1-4 in Patriot League play. Their only Conference win came in their season finally, a 21-6 win over Bucknell.
Offense was not an issue for the Raiders last season, as the team averaged over 24 points per game. The Raiders also featured potent rushing attack, averaging 217 yards per game on the ground. That rushing attack should take a hit this year however, as 2011 leading rusher, Preseason Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year and Walter Payton Award Fianalist, Nate Eachus, has graduated. Out of the backfield, Senior Jordan McCord should receive most of the carries, and opposing defenses can’t forget about Junior QB Gavin McCarney, as running the football is a huge part of his game. McCarney led all Patriot League quarterbacks in rushing in 2011 with 75 yards per game on the ground.
Defense was the issue for the Raiders last year, as they gave up an average of over 30 points per game. The Raiders allowed just over 374 total yards per game last season The Raiders lose a pair of linebackers in Chris DiMassa and Adam Lock, who combined 154 tackles last season. Senior Jordan McCord, who figures to be the teams leader out of the offensive backfield, will continue to play both sides of the ball and will have to be a team leader on defense.
Click the Plug-ins below to hear from Colgate Head Coach Dick Biddle and Quarterback Gavin McCarney