Colgate FCS Football 2012 Playoff Capsule

Colgate Raiders


With a comeback win at Lehigh, Colgate shocked the FCS world by winning the automatic bid from the Patriot League. Colgate was cruising along in conference play and putting up some huge offense numbers, but few expected the Raiders to win on the road against a team of Lehigh’s caliber. But they did and are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2008. It was less than a decade ago that Coach Dick Biddle led this program to the championship game. That may be asking too much from this group, but win or lose, this is a very fun team to watch.

2012 Record: 8-3, 6-0
Coach: Dick Biddle

Big Wins: 10/20 Georgetown (57-36), 11/10 at Lehigh (35-24)
Bad Losses: 9/1 at Albany (23-40), 9/22 at Stony Brook (31-32)

Sure the Colgate offense has not gone up against the best of the best in the FCS, but they have turned into a great unit led by quarterback Gavin McCarney and running back Jordan McCord. Last year McCarney was mostly a running quarterback, and he still does a lot of running, but the 6-2 junior has also turned into a very efficient and effective passer. On top of his 1,309 rushing yards and 22 rushing touchdowns, McCarney has thrown for 2,253 yards with 15 touchdowns and just six interceptions. That is a lot of touchdowns. McCarney’s ability to throw the ball has really opened up the offense to be one of the most dynamic in the nation. Chris Looney and Daniel Cason are a couple of experienced receivers who can make big plays. Also keep an eye out for tight ends Kevin O’Connell and CJ Stempeck. They both do a great job of leaking out in goal line situations and provide McCarney with big targets in the red zone. McCord has benefitted enormously from McCarney’s ability to throw the ball. The opposition cannot afford to put eight or nine guys in the box like they could last season. That has opened up plenty of space for McCord to rush for 1,627 yards and 22 touchdowns.

The offense may score over 40 points per game, but the defense allows over 30. There are some quality playmakers on defense, most notably senior linebacker Patrick Friel and sophomore cornerback Mike Armiento. The biggest problem the defense is going to have in the playoffs is on the line. The Raiders just do not have the size and strength to compete with quality opposing linemen. Even against Patriot League opposition this is not a team that could consistently get into the backfield. That problem is only going to be magnified against the quality competition the Raiders are going to go up against now. If the defense can hold on occasion and pick up a turnover or two, Colgate can win a playoff game on the legs of McCarney and McCord.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Jordan McCord, RB, 1,627 yards
Passing: Gavin McCarney, QB, 2,253 yards
Receiving: Chris Looney, WR, 723 yards
Tackles: Patrick Friel, LB, 84
Sacks: Vince Myers, DT, 6.0
Interceptions: Mike Armiento, CB, 4

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 290.20 (7th in nation, 1st in conference)
Passing Offense: 209.20 (61, 5)
Total Offense: 499.40 (3, 1)
Scoring Offense: 41.20 (3, 1)
Rushing Defense: 197.70 (98, 6)
Pass Defense: 205.20 (53, 3)
Total Defense: 402.90 (86, 5)
Scoring Defense: 31.00 (88, 6)
Turnover Margin: 0.60 (21, 1)
Sacks: 2.30 (35, 4)
Sacks Allowed: 1.50 (29, 2)

Recent Playoff Appearances:
2008    First Round    Lost to Villanova
2005    First Round    Lost to New Hampshire
2003    First Round    Defeated Massachusetts
2003    Quarterfinals    Defeated Western Illinois
2003    Semifinals    Defeated Florida Atlantic
2003    Championship    Lost to Delaware
1999    First Round    Lost to Illinois State
1998    First Round    Lost to Georgia Southern
1997    First Round    Lost to Villanova
1983    First Round    Lost to Western Carolina
1982    First Round    Defeated Boston University
1982    Quarterfinals    Lost to Delaware

*all team stats through 11/10


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