Lehigh FCS Football 2012 Playoff Capsule

Lehigh Mountain Hawks


Lehigh did not win the Patriot League due to a home loss to Colgate, but their 10-1 record was still enough to get into the playoffs. The Mountain Hawks have not been tested much this season. Last year they at least played New Hampshire early in the campaign. This year the non-conference schedule was pretty light and the best teams the Mountain Hawks face will be in the playoffs.

2012 Record: 10-1, 5-1
Coach: Andy Coen

Big Wins: 9/22 at Liberty (28-26), 10/13 at Georgetown (17-14)
Bad Losses: 11/10 Colgate (24-35)

To pull off an upset or two, Lehigh is going to have to play great defense. So far that has been the case. The Mountain Hawks are very good at getting to the quarterback and that has been extremely helpful to the entire defense. Tom Bianchi and Sajjad Chagani are the most effective pass rushers in the front line in Coach Andy Coen’s 3-4 defense. Outside linebacker Nigel Muhammad also has a lot of pass rushing responsibilities. Billy Boyko and Sam Loughery are two tough and versatile inside linebackers. The secondary is quite experienced. They may not make a ton of big plays, but they do not give up many big plays either.

With all of the pressure on the opposing quarterback, it would be nice if Lehigh could force a few more turnovers. The defense tends to avoid risky plays, but they may not have that luxury once the going gets tough in the playoffs. Against most opponents Lehigh’s defense should keep the team in the game. But the offense must be more consistent. The bad turnover margin is mostly due to senior quarterback Mike Colvin. It is completely unfair to compare Colvin to Chris Lum, a two year starter under center, but the offense is far less potent than it was a year ago. Colvin has a nice arm and can make some great throws, but the interceptions are a problem. Lehigh cannot afford turnovers. With wide receivers Ryan Spadola and Lee Kurfis, the passing game can be extremely effective when Colvin has time to operate and is making good decisions. Colvin is a very mobile quarterback who has rushed for 11 touchdowns on the year. That adds another dynamic to the Mountain Hawks offense and helps create space for running back Zach Barket. If Lehigh loses the turnover battle they will be in trouble, but when the offense is clicking, this is a tough team to beat.

Statistical Leaders:
Rushing: Zach Barket, RB, 525 yards
Passing: Mike Colvin, QB, 3,108 yards
Receiving: Ryan Spadola, WR, 851 yards
Tackles: Billy Boyko, LB, 104
Sacks: Tom Bianchi, DT, 7; Sajjad Chagani, DT, 5.5
Interceptions: Rickie Hill, S, 2; John Mahoney, LB, 2

2012 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 122.50 (97th in nation, 6th in conference)
Passing Offense: 275.20 (19, 1)
Total Offense: 397.70 (43, 3)
Scoring Offense: 29.50 (38, 3)
Rushing Defense: 151.50 (55, 3)
Pass Defense: 203.60 (48, 2)
Total Defense: 355.10 (42, 1)
Scoring Defense: 21.90 (36, 1)
Turnover Margin: -0.80 (105, 7)
Sacks: 3.00 (11, 1)
Sacks Allowed: 0.60 (4, 1)

Recent Playoff Appearances:
2011    Second Round    Defeated Towson
2011    Quarterfinals        Lost to North Dakota State
2010    First Round         Defeated Northern Iowa
2010    Second Round    Lost to Delaware
2004    First Round        Lost to James Madison
2001    First Round        Defeated Hofstra
2001    Quarterfinals        Lost to Furman
2000    First Round        Defeated Western Illinois
2000    Quarterfinals        Lost to Delaware
1999    First Round        Lost to Hofstra
1998    First Round        Defeated Richmond
1998    Quarterfinals        Lost to Massachusetts
1980    First Round        Lost to Eastern Kentucky
1979    First Round        Defeated Murray State
1979    Championship        Lost to Eastern Kentucky

*all team stats through 11/10


Playoff Central