Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Class of 2019 Leads in Athletic Versatility


In the University’s most selective admission process to date – 6.99%, or 1,908 admitted of the 27,290 who applied – Princeton Football welcomes 31 young recruits from the Class of 2019.

The Northeast provided the greatest amount of talent this year with 11 players, primarily from New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. States in the Midwest like Illinois, Ohio, Minnesota, and Wisconsin contributed heavily to the talent pool. Big Southern and Western states like Texas, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia and California followed close behind.

But wherever the new Tigers hailed from, it was their athletic ability that set this recruiting class apart from the others. 24 of the 31 players competed and/or lettered in another sport besides football. Six of those players participated in two other sports, in addition to their commitments to their team. The group shows experience in track and field, wrestling, basketball, soccer, lacrosse and baseball.

“I love multisport players,” Head Coach Bob Surace said. “They know how to compete and have upside. Whether it's current two-sport track stars like John Hill and Dre’ Nelson, All-State wrestlers like Mike Zeuli and Evan Kappatos, All-State baseball players like Matt Arends, basketball stars like Anthony Gaffney, offensive linemen that played lacrosse like Spencer Huston and Max Coale, I have no doubt this has helped our program.”

The Class of 2019 also shows amazing flexibility. Roughly 90 percent of the incoming group has experience playing in multiple positions. Most have played at least two positions, while some have seen as many as six.

“Versatility is so valuable to our success – I’m sure that's a similar reason that NFL players have that quality,” Surace said. “Sometimes it's someone like Mike Zeuli that can play multiple positions, sometimes it's position switches like Seth DeValve from high school quarterback to wide receiver, sometimes it's a position group like running back that become special teams leaders (Will Powers, Dre’ Nelson, Joey Rhattigan and AJ Glass) and even players that do multiple things (run, catch, block, throw) like quarterback Quinn Epperly.”

With a senior class heavy with nose tackles, defensive backs and offensive linemen, the Tigers looked to grab players who could fill these key defensive positions. Quarterback remained a priority, and in the recent year, wide receiver positions have had a high importance for the Princeton team.

Yet, the coaching staff’s main priority in recruiting was not focused primarily on filling positions based on graduation losses, but on four critical components they expect to see in each recruit.

“They must be smart, tough, disciplined, and team-oriented,” Surace said. “We also want them to play fast, explosive, and show finish. Our recruiting scout shows camp to be the most relevant connection. Most importantly, we will recruit someone that lacks height, size or speed if they have a rare quality to overcome it - unique foot quickness like Dre’ Nelson or exceptional toughness/effort like Mike Zeuli.”

The Class of 2019 brings talent to every position, stacking up as seen below:


Graham Adomitis
Position to Fill: TE
Hometown: Ross Township, PA
High School: Pittsburgh Central Catholic
Highlights: Graham was named Big 33 All-State Tight End in 2015 and the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League (WPIAL) All-Conference Tight End in 2014 and 2013. He helped his team win the state and league title at the WPIAL AAAA Championship in 2013. His senior year, Graham also led the team as captain, lettered in basketball and was a member in NHS (National Honor Society). At Princeton, he plans to major in Economics or Politics.

Jordan Argue
Position to Fill: WR
Hometown: Hartland, WI
High School: Arrowhead
Highlights: His senior year, Jordan was the Conference leading receiver with 33 receptions, 686 yards, and 9 receiving touchdowns. He helped Arrowhead to their Division 1 State Championships in 2012 and 2013. A member of the team Leadership Council his junior and senior years, he also earned All-State honors in track and field and received Academic Honor Roll all four years. At Princeton, he plans to major in Financial Engineering or Economics.

George Attea
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: East Amherst, NY
High School: Williamsville North
Highlights: His junior year, George helped his team to Sectional Champions and New York State Class A Runner-ups. In 2014 and 2015, he earned the titles of 1st team All-League, 1st team All-Western New York, and 2nd team All-New York State. George was a football captain for two years. George, as captain, also helped his basketball team to the Erie County Interscholastic Conference Co-Champions and was the 1st team All-Western New York Football Scholar athlete. George is currently undecided as a major, but has interests in History and Biology.

Bradley Bourque
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Neptune Beach, FL
High School: Duncan U. Fletcher
Highlights: Bradley was a 4-year Varsity Starter and a 3-year two-way starter. He earned 3 All-District titles, 2 All-Gateway Conferences and was named 1st team All-Area, 2nd team All-Region, and 2nd team All-State. Bradley was captain his senior year. He was also a track and field letter winner. He earned four Academic All-District titles, Gateway Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year, and 1st team Academic All-State. At Princeton, he hopes to major in Operations Research and Financial Engineering.

Stephen Carlson
Position to Fill: WR
Hometown: Jamestown, NY
High School: Jamestown
Highlights: Stephen was a 2-time winner of All-State 1st team and of All-League 1st team and winner of the Connolly Cup for Most Outstanding Player in West New York. With 2,400 career receiving yards and 136 tackles in his senior year, Stephen helped his team to Class AA State Champions in 2014 and Section 6 Champs in 2013. Stephen was also a State Finalist 2013-2014 basketball, won the New York State Senate Youth Leadership Award, and earned the title of All-WNY Scholar Athlete Football Team in 2014. At Princeton, he hopes to major in Bioengineering.

Jack Corso
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Leesburg, VA
High School: Tuscarora
Highlights: Jack earned the titles of 1st team All-Conference, All-Region, and All-State 5A VA. As a three-year captain, he helped his team become Conference Champions, Regional Champions, and State Runners-Up. He also won a letter in track and field, placing 7th in Regionals. Jack was a member of NHS and Science National Honor Society. At Princeton, he plans on majoring in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.

Keaton Dunsford
Position to Fill: QB
Hometown: Calistoga, CA
High School: Cardinal Newman
Highlights: As senior year captain, Keaton was awarded 1st team – All Redwood Empire, and the Cardinal Newman High School Athletic Award for outstanding achievement. He also set the season passing record for his high school at 3,013 yards. He was an Elite 11 participant and semi-finalist, considered by Elite 11 coaches as one of the top 25 quarterbacks in the country from the Class of 2014. He was also the recipient of the Phillips Scholar Athlete Award at Phillips Exeter Academy. At Princeton, he plans to design his own major.

Jesper Horsted
Position to Fill: WR
Hometown: Shoreview, MI
High School: Roseville Area
Highlights: Jesper set the Minnesota record for receptions in one game with 19 catches for 293 yards in the 2013 state playoffs. He also ranked 6th nationally in receiving stats for Class of 2015 in 2013-14 with 82 catches for 1,484 yards and 19 touchdowns. Jesper earned the title of 1st team All-State, All-Metro, and All-Conference 2013 KARE All-Metro. Jesper was a letter winner in both basketball and baseball and an NHS member. At Princeton, Jesper is interested in pursuing the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Stefan Ivanisevic
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Hinsdale, IL
High School: Hinsdale Central
Highlights: Stefan earned the titles of All-Conference and All-Area on the offensive line. He also helped to lead his team postseason. Stefan was a letter winner in both track and field and wrestling. He was an IHSA Scholar athlete. At Princeton, he plans to major in Economics.

Maxwell McPherson
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Las Vegas, NV
High School: Faith Lutheran
Highlights: In 2014, Maxwell was 1st team All-League for Division 1A Sunset League and 2nd team All-State in Nevada. In 2013, Maxwell was 1st team All-Region for both offensive tackle and defensive end. He also helped his team to win the Division 1A State Championship. Stefan was a letter winner for track and field, graduated valedictorian, and in 2012-2014 was awarded Academic All-State for varsity football. At Princeton, Maxwell is interested in pursuing Computer Science or Biology.

Alex Parkinson
Position to Fill: WR
Hometown: Mamaroneck, NY
High School: Mamaroneck
Highlights: In Alex’s career, he had 21 catches for 327 yards and 5 touchdowns. While playing as a safety, he had 87 tackles, 2 interception, 2 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, and 7 passes defensed. Alex earned the title of NYSSWA All-State 3rd team, Journal News 1st team All-County, All-Section and, All-League. Alex was a letter winner in basketball and track and field. He also earned the title All-League for track as a high jumper. At Princeton, Alex is interested in studying History.

Dan Petticord
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Lakewood, OH
High School: St. Edward
Highlights: Dan was named to the Top 100 players in Northeastern Ohio as one of only nine offensive linemen who made the list. He was a 2-year Varsity Letterman and helped lead his team to the State Championship. He was a NHS member and a National Merit Finalist. At Princeton, he intends on majoring in Molecular Biology.

Christopher Ryan
Position to Fill: OL
Hometown: Lombard, IL
High School: Glenbard East
Highlights: Christopher earned 2013 Honorable Mention All-Conference, 2014 All-Conference, and 2014 Honorable Mention All-State. Christopher has a 94% block completion. He was a letter winner in basketball and received Academic All-Conference. Christopher was also a NHS member and earned the titles of Academic All-Conference in both 2013 and 2014, as well as 2014 Academic All-State. At Princeton, he intends on majoring in Civil Engineering.

Anthony Siragusa
Position to Fill: WR
Hometown: Chagrin Falls, OH
High School: Walsh Jesuit
Highlights: Anthony won the title of 1st team All-District and 2nd team All-State for Ohio. He helped his team to the North Coast League Champions in 2012 and 2013. In Anthony’s junior and senior year, he had 28 catches for 411 yards and 2 touchdowns. Anthony was a NHS member and had First Honors all four years at Walsh Jesuit. He was named Most Valuable Defensive Back in 2014 and Most Valuable Receiver in 2013. At Princeton, he plans to major in Economics.

Cody Smith
Position to Fill: RB
Hometown: Lincoln University, PA
High School: Bishop Shanahan
Highlights: In 2014, Cody won All-Chesmont League 1st team Defensive Linebacker, All-Area 2nd team Linebacker, and All-State Honorable Mention for Linebacker. He was ranked 57 by the Philadelphia Inquirer in their top 100 PA Offensive High School Class of 2015 football players. Cody received the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame, Inc. He was a winner of the Philadelphia Area Chapter Football Scholar-Athlete Award. At Princeton, he is interested in pursuing Engineering.

Charles Volker
Position to Fill: RB
Hometown: Fair Haven, NJ
High School: Rumson-Fair Haven
Highlights: Charlie was 1st team All-Division and All-Shore in 2014 and 2015. He was also 2nd team All-State NJ in 2014 and 2015 with 2,108 yards on 278 carries. In his career, he had 3,508 yards with 42 touchdowns and 7.58 yards per carry for both seasons. He helped his team to two CJ Group II States Titles. Cody was a letter winner in track and field. He was also a President’s Gold and Silver award recipient in 2015 and won the Sportsmanship award candidate in 2015. At Princeton, his major is currently undecided.


Joey DeMarco
Position to Fill: DL
Hometown: Del Mar, CA
High School: Torrey Pines
Highlights: Joey was a 2-year starter on both the defensive and offensive line. He won 1st Team All-League and TPHS Defensive Player of the Year. In his senior year, Joey led his team in quarterback sacks and helped them to Open Division San Diego CIF Football Championship. Joey was also a letter winner in track and field, winning third at the San Diego CIF Championship his junior year. He was an AP Scholar and won TPHS Scholar Athlete three times. At Princeton, he wants to study Economics.

Benjamin Ellis
Position to Fill: DB
Hometown: Memphis, TN
High School: Briarcrest Christian School
Highlights: In 2014, Benjamin won both 1st team All-Region and Memphis Metro Best of Preps. He also went 2nd team All-Region in 2013. Benjamin played in the Liberty Bowl All-Star game and was captain of his football team both junior and senior seasons. Benjamin was also a letterwinner in baseball, winning All-Region in 2012 and 2013 and All-State in 2013. He was a member of NHS and Student Body President. At Princeton, he intends to study Economics.

John Gearon III
Position to Fill: DL
Hometown: Atlanta, GA
High School: The Lovett School
Highlights: John won All-Area and Defensive Most Improved while at The Lovett School. He was a football captain and helped his team win State Champions in 2012. John was also a letter winner and captain of the basketball team. At Princeton, he is interested in studying Economics, History, or Politics.

Thomas Johnson
Position to Fill: LB
Hometown: Moorestown, NJ
High School: St. Joseph’s Prep
Highlights: Thomas won 1st Team PCL All Catholic and helped his team to become the 2013 and 2014 PIAA State Champions. Thomas was also a letter winner and 2-year captain of the wrestling team, earning PCL All Catholic twice. He was a member of NHS and a National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame, Philadelphia Area Chapter Scholar Athlete. At Princeton, he is undecided on his major.

Simeon Lane
Position to Fill: DL
Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
High School: St. Xavier
Highlights: Simeon won Ohio D1 All-State, All-Region, and All-Conference, helping his team to become GCL South Conference Champs. He was selected for the North South All-Star game and was varsity football captain. Simeon was also a letter winner in wrestling. He was a NHS member and winner of National Football Foundation “That’s My Boy” award. At Princeton, Simeon is interested in pursuing Economics.

Jake McFadden
Position to Fill: LB
Hometown: London, KY
High School: North Laurel
Highlights: Jake was 3-time All-District, 2-time All-Region, 3-time Tri-County 1st team, and All-State Honorable Mention. He was captain his junior and senior years, leading the state in tackles his sophomore, junior, and senior year with 120+ each year. Jake was also a letterwinner in track and field, earning the Season MVP. He was a member of NHS and Penn Station Athlete of the Year. At Princeton, he is interested in pursuing Computer Science.

Ben Novello
Position to Fill: DB
Hometown: Tampa, FL
High School: Berkeley Prep
Highlights: Captain his senior year, Ben won All-County Honorable Mention and was the leading tackler his sophomore and senior years. Ben was also a letterwinner in both soccer and track and field. Ben was a NHS member and made the headmaster’s list all four years. At Princeton, he is interested in majoring in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

Edward Rudinski
Position to Fill: LB
Hometown: Santa Monica, CA
High School: Oaks Christian
Highlights: Eddie won 1st team All-Marmonte League in 2013 and 2014 and made the LA Times Top 10 Linebacker. He helped lead his team in postseason play and was invited to the Adidas West Coast Bowl. He led his team as captain his senior year. Eddie was also a letterwinner in basketball and track and field and received Honors Roll all four year. At Princeton, he is interested in pursuing Economics.

Trent Cameron Schneider
Position to Fill: DB
Hometown: The Woodlands, TX
High School: The Woodlands
Highlights: TC won 1st team All-District and 1st team All-County in 2013 and 2014. In his career, he had 8 interceptions, 171 tackles, and 28 pass defenses. TC was 2014 football captain and helped his team to be undefeated District Champions in 2013 and 2014, 2013 Bi-District Champions, and 2013 Area Champions. He was a letter winner in baseball and competed in track and field. He was a member of NHS, 1st team Academic All-District and 2nd team Academic All-State. At Princeton, he is interested in studying Philosophy, Psychology, or Economics.

Jackson Simcox
Position to Fill: LB
Hometown: Westfield, NJ
High School: Westfield
Highlights: Jackson won 1st team All-Area and All-League and was named to the NJFCA Super 100 All-State team. As captain his senior year, he helped his team to state semifinals. He ended his career with 328 total tackles and was the 1st player in Westfield history to start as a freshman. Jackson also lettered in lacrosse and won 3rd team All-State. At Princeton, he is undecided on his major.

Eli Stern
Position to Fill: DB
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
High School: Brentwood School
Highlights: Eli won 1st team All-League in 2013 and 2014, and 1st team All-CIF Utility Player in 2014. He led the state in interceptions among freshmen in 2011 and was a league leader in both passing and rushing yards. Eli was football captain his senior year and also a letter winner in both baseball and lacrosse. He was a National Merit Scholar and made the Dean’s List and Honor Roll all four years. At Princeton, he is interested in pursuing Economics, Philosophy, Creative Writing, and Film.

Brett Stewart
Position to Fill: DB
Hometown: Garden City, NY
High School: Garden City
Highlights: Brett was named All-Nassau County and All-Long Island in 2012 and 2013. He broke the single season school record for completions (131), passing yards (1,676), passing touchdowns (23), and all-purpose yards (2,595). He was captain for three years and helped his team to the Long Island Championship in 2012. He was named Academic All-Conference in 2012. At Princeton, Brett is hoping to study Economics.

Jake Strain
Position to Fill: DL
Hometown: Springfield, PA
High School: St. Joseph’s Prep
Highlights: Jake was a two-time winner of 1st team All-Catholic League and All-City and won 1st Team All-State. He was captain in 2014 and helped his team to the Pennsylvania State Championship twice and NHS member. At Princeton, he intends on majoring in Bioengineering.

Mike Wagner
Position to Fill: LB
Hometown: Victor, NY
High School: Victor
Highlights: Mike was named 2nd team All-State, Class AA Section V Finals MVP, and All-League Player of the Year. He had over 2,500 career passing yards and 3,000 career rushing yards, with 58 total touchdowns. Mike was captain of his team junior and senior years and helped them to win the League and Section title as a senior . Mike is also a letter winner in baseball, a member of NHS, and a Scholar-Athlete Award winner. At Princeton, he intends to major in in Operations Research and Financial Engineering.

Special Teams

Steven Mejia
Position to Fill: PK/P
Hometown: Doral, FL
High School: Ronald Reagan Doral
Highlights: Steven was selected as All-District kicker and was a state finalist in Wendy’s High School Heisman Competition. He had 71% touchbacks on kickoffs, 7/8 on field goals with a long of 44 yards, and a 41-yard punt average. Steven was a NHS member and graduated top 3% in his class. At Princeton, he hopes to major in Economics.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Alumni Arrive for Football's Career Night: Tips and Tricks for Interviewing


Last Thursday night, Princeton football hosted its Fourth Annual Career Night. The team’s rising juniors and seniors arrived dressed in suits, resumes in hand, prepared to interview with one of 24 football alumni. From recent 2014 graduates to members of the Class of 1980, the alumni and career services hosted the night to prepare the players for professional job and internship interviews.

The event was divided into three parts, with the players rotating through each twenty minute stage.

Executive Director of Career Services Pulin Sanghvi and Senior Associate Director for Career Counseling and Programming Kathleen Mannheimer from Career Services oversaw the Interview Workshop.

Pulin and Mannheimer hit on popular questions employers often ask, such as ‘what is a weakness of yours?’ or ‘describe a time you used an analytic skill?’ The two offered guidance with problems that arise when thinking about questions like these. For example, just how much is too revealing when offering a weakness? (Answer: Make it something that can be trainable, like being more efficient with responding to emails). Or what does the interviewer get out of asking about your past experiences? (Answer: Past behavior predicts future behavior. His intention is to learn a little bit of your story).

With these tips in mind, players were lined up with alumni for their one-on-one mock interviews.

The line-up of alumni interviewers included:

Brian Anderson ’09
Devon Barrett ’14
Peter Baston ’80
Dave Bocian ’92
Nick Brophy ’94                  
Marty Cheatham ’01
Anthony Cicia ’92
Jordan Culbreath ’11
Alan DeRose ’83
Jaiye Falusi ’12
Rob Holuba ’06
Joe Kovba ’07
Joe Macaione ’91
Jake Marshall ’07
Mike Meehan ’07
Brian Mills ’14
Mark Paski ’10
Steve Reynolds ’80
Carl Teter ’95
Steve Simcox ’83                                              

Invited to join the team and experience the program, I was lined up with Alan DeRose. We started with the casual, “tell me about yourself.” From there, it developed into a conversation about my current academic interests and career path, starting with my coursework and ending with where I see myself in twenty years. We set a timer for twenty minutes at the beginning of our interview, but continued talking even after it went off. The twenty minutes felt like two. My beginning nervousness had evaporated by the end, and not only was the practice invaluable, but it was also fun.

Senior defensive back Khamal Brown interviewed with Marty Cheatham. Cheatham, with a degree in politics, currently works as a trader at Hoplite Capital Management. Brown, who is also majoring in politics, found the experience rewarding because Cheatham provided advice about his own Princeton experience and career path.

“Practice makes perfect,” Brown said. “You can never do this enough times, and you’re in a setting with someone who has your best interests in mind.”

Players listen and take notes from Career Services and
alumni speakers from the night.
Senior tight end Dylan White interviewed with Brian Mills, who graduated with a degree in psychology and currently works as an internal wholesaler for Lincoln Financial Distributors.

“Any experience is a good experience,” White said. “This makes the next interview easier, especially in this setting. I’ve learned a lot – everything down to your body language contributes to the reflection of yourself.”

After the interviews, Anthony DiTomasso and Joseph Harvey, both class of 1986, held a debriefing with more tips to impress in an interview and job searching advice. Their debriefing encouraged using time at Princeton to find a passion to pursue.

“In an interview, you explore technical skills and experience, but the difference maker is passion,” Harvey said. “One of my son’s friends came to see me because he wanted to be a financial adviser. I got him into training. There were about 10 people in class, and he was always the last one sitting there. He had passion. He got his shot.”

They suggested interview tips, such as leading the interview by offering to walk them through your resume before an interviewer can ask their first question. Other advice included doing research on the company and person you are interviewing with, coming in with questions and sending a handwritten letter as a thank you.

“Who are you?” DiTomasso said. “If you don’t like chatting up people and talking, then don’t be a salesmen. This is self-examination period. Find out who you are and what you want to do.”

The team gathered to conclude the night with a few final alumni speeches, discussing both positive and negative behavior they saw in their interviews. DeRose suggested sharing a passion to spark an idea the interviewer never thought about before. Nick Brophy suggested not worrying about looking for ‘the’ job right out of college, just ‘a’ job.

“A lot of the players were poised and confident,” Dave Bocian said. “It was obvious they’re hard workers, and that’s a great thing that as an employer you want to see.”

Alumni wrap up the night after giving their final
after-interview advice to players.
The night was an important to the alumni as it was to the players. More than interview preparation, the night allowed the team and their predecessors an opportunity to connect.

“It’s really rewarding because it never feels like you’ve been gone as long as you have been,” Joe Macaione said. “What you say is still relevant and helpful. We didn’t have this when I played, and I wish we did. These players led with the strength of the kind of people they are and communicated that really well.”

Thursday, April 2, 2015

2015 PFA Events Calendar

2015 PFA Calendar: 
The Princeton Football Association, along with Coach Surace & Staff, has  assembled an action packed schedule as highlighted below.

·                     February 19th - Armstrong Dinner, Princeton Club of NY 6:00
·                     February 24th - Princeton Club of Philadelphia luncheon

·                     March 21st - Spring Game, Princeton vs. Kwansei Gakuin, Osaka, Japan
·                     April 25th – Spring Football Team Pro Day Olympics

·                     April/May – (Various dates and locations TBD) – Head Coach Regional Receptions
·                     May 29th - Alumni Football Game 1:00 PM - Princeton Stadium (participants should arrive  by noon)

·                     May 29th - Reunions Reception 3:00-6:00 PM - Princeton Stadium
·                     July 13th - Annual PFA Golf Classic 10:00 AM honoring Mike Hirou ’91

·                     Football CampsJune 19, 22, 26 & 29 / July 10 & 11 / Kicking Camp – June 25th
·                     September 19th – Season Opener - Princeton @ Lafayette

·                     September 26th – Home Opener - Lehigh vs. Princeton
·                     October 3th Columbia vs. Princeton  PFA tailgate honoring the 20th Anniversary of the 1995 Ivy Championship Team

·                     October 10th – Colgate vs. Princeton
·                     October 17thPrinceton @ Brown

·                     October 24th - Princeton @ Harvard
·                     October 31st – Cornell vs. Princeton PFA Tailgate Honoring all living Poe-           Kazmaier Award Winners

·                     November 7th - Princeton @ Penn
·                     November 14th – Yale vs. Princeton

·                     November 21ndPrinceton @ Dartmouth
·                    November 22rd – Lourie Football Banquet

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Princeton University dominates Kwansei Gakuin University in Japan


Princeton University capped their spring practice season with a 36-7 victory over the Kwansei Gakuin University Fighters, the national college champion of Japan, in their “Legacy Bowl” match-up Saturday, March 21. The last time they faced the Fighters was in 2001, where they only pulled out a victory after a late field goal that ended the game at 27-25. The Tigers ability to pursue the ball and maintain good balance on defense made for an impressive Princeton performance.

Tigers ready on the field to face the Fighters
The Tigers put up its first six points six minutes into the first quarter. A long pass by junior quarterback Chad Kanoff put them on the goal line, and a handoff to junior running back A.J. Glass resulted in a touchdown. Princeton, looking to experiment after its spring practices, attempted a 2-point conversion. The ball was fumbled on the one yard line, and the Tigers were forced to hand over the ball to the Fighters.

It didn’t take long for a turn-over, and five minutes later, Princeton set itself up with on the 10-yard line after a 25-yard rush by senior running back DrĂ© Nelson. Two plays later, a touchdown pass from Kanoff to senior wide receiver Isaiah Barnes and a successful field goal kick by placekicker Nolan Bieck put the Tigers at 13-0.

Princeton scored twice more before halftime.

Early in the second quarter at third-and-goal Glass dove for another touchdown. The Tigers failed to earn the extra point after another attempted 2-point conversion pass was batted down by the Fighter defense.

The second score came when senior quarterback Kedric Bostic tossed it to junior running back Joe Rhattigan. The Tigers ticked on the extra point with a kick and ended the half at 26-0.

When Princeton returned to the field for the third quarter, they didn’t let up.

Their streak continue with a 30-yard punt return by sophomore linebacker Mark Fossati that set up the Tigers for a field goal on the 15-yard line.

Midway into the third quarter, Kanoff passed to junior wide receiver James Frusciante for a touchdown. Another extra point put the score at 36-0.

Kwansei Gakuin was able to gain its only seven points on the Tigers with four minutes left in the game, when they rushed from the 10-yard line for a touchdown to cap the game at 36-7.

The spring victory sent the Tigers home satisfied and optimistic heading into the fall. The “Legacy Bowl” showed a strong run for both offensive and defensive players. Every player experienced time on the field, allowing Princeton to experiment with their play before the Sept. 19 against Lafayette College.

“We did some things we don’t usually do in the regular season, trying to get some practice,” Head Coach Bob Surace said. “We really involved a lot of people and were successful in various positions. We moved the ball well throughout the first quarter almost all the way through the third quarter.”

Kanoff’s 15 passes for 207 yards earned him the 2015 Legacy Bowl MVP title. Freshman quarterback John Lovett also took to the field, catching five passes for 65 yards and rushing for 40 yards.

Quarterback Chad Kanoff is named 2015 Legacy Bowl MVP.

Princeton also displayed a strong rushing game. Glass rushed for 12 times for 57 yards and two touchdowns. Nelson rushed 11 times for 77 yards. Rhattigan rushed 11 times for 40 yards and a touchdown.

In the passing game, the Tigers also impressed. Barnes had three catches for 44 yards and a touchdown, and Frusciante had six catches for 66 yards. Junior tight end Scott Carpenter had three catches for 53 yards.

“We did a good job of keeping things simple, and coaches did a good job adapting,” Surace said. “We ran 90 plays, and in 82 or 83 of them, we made good decisions. Young guys who might be quote-un-quote inexperienced really stepped up, and that’s something to build on.”

Defensively, Princeton also stood out.

Junior defensive backs Sam Huffman and Markus Phox had interceptions. Sophomore linebacker Quincy Wolff and junior defensive back Matt Arends had sacks.

“Defensively, we maintained good balance between pressure and good technique, which was really good to see,” Surace said. “We tackled extremely well and did a good job on third downs and getting off the field in the first half.”
Tigers celebrate after their victory.

The plan for the Tigers in the coming months is to make corrections based on game film. Coaches will meet with players individually to target areas needing improvement. The team will focus on their conditioning and lifting program.

“We have to keep getting stronger and faster,” Surace said. “We can sit down and meet with players individually, and hammer home two or three things that will go from weaknesses to strength in the next months before Lafayette.”

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Big Quarterback Question


With an absence in the pocket after losing veteran quarterbacks Quinn Epperly and Connor Michelson to graduation, the Tigers are left to decide between senior Kedric Bostic, junior Chad Kanoff and sophomore John Lovett who will lead the fast, hurry-up offense in the upcoming fall season.

Offensive Coordinator and Quarterback Coach James Perry looks to fill the position that can keep the fast and physical brand the Tigers are known for.

“We develop schematics based on the abilities of our players,” Perry said. “Most important thing for our current quarterbacks to do is demonstrate they can operate our offense fast. Being fast is the most pivotal part of what our offense is, and we can only go as fast as our quarterback will direct.”

Yet, the Tigers remain undecided as to how they will approach fitting the quarterbacks into their fast offense.

“We are learning their strengths this spring,” Perry said. “Having three talented guys compete is an ideal situation for them all to get the most out of their ability. The most important advantage is we can put our best players on field as opposed to leaving backup quarterback on sideline”.

It is unknown whether Princeton will see another 2- or 3-quarterback play style or if the team will stick with one player.

“We used to have 2 to 3 quarterbacks the last few years because they demonstrated they were some of our best players,” Perry said. “We will evaluate this crew and if they show they deserve it, we will continue to do that.”

The race is a tight one.

Bostic’s strength lies in his ability as a runner, quick to the edge with the ability to make cuts, but it is unknown whether he throws the ball well enough to capture the starting position.

Kanoff, however, amazes in his passing game as a more pro-style pocket passer. He was a recruiting coup, decommitted from Vanderbilt, who throws an extremely accurate ball. Although he is more lacking in the run game than the other two, not really the option to make cutbacks or beat defenders to the edge, but once up to speed, Kanoff has long strides that can cover ground.

Lovett dazzled in his Junior Varsity games last season, emerging as a passing and throwing hybrid. Yet, he is younger than the other two competitors, and quarterback is the hardest position to learn.

The competition remains open, though. Epperly and Michelson represented hard workers, and the quarterbacks who fill the position have to bring the same qualities to practice, said Perry. It’s about the improvement. Epperly started with far superior running skills to passing skills, while Michelson was the opposite. Epperly improved astonishingly at the pass game, and Michelson became better at the run.

Whoever winds up with the majority of the snaps, Perry will find a way to put all three athletes on the field.

Part of a team with an influx of young quarterbacks and receivers, Bostic’s previous three years of experience with Epperly and Michelson give him an edge in the competition. Since his collegiate debut against Dartmouth in 2012, Bostic has seen significant play time as a member of 2- and 3-quarterback plays. Over his Princeton career, he rushed 21 times for a total of 125 yards, earning two touchdowns, completed 11 of 18 passing attempts for 101 yards, and received 16 passes for 81 yards.

Kedric Bostic 909798
Kedric Bostic '17

“Quinn and Connor provided a leadership to all of us in that basically they’d been in the system for four years working in the game and everything, so all three of us have to step up and lead the team,” Bostic said. “I’ve seen how everything has gone for four years. We need to make sure that we’re still playing fast and physical. We can’t drop off at all.”

Bostic looks to improve his accuracy, positioning and decision-making during spring practice.

“We’re focused on getting better every day,” Bostic said. “We’re not focused on just Japan [Princeton football is currently there playing in the Legacy Bowl], but every day in practice trying to get better. That’s how we get where we want to be next year, which is winning another Ivy League Championship. Every day we go out, we just focus on that day and that practice. We just focus on something we want to improve.”

Kanoff, however, is entering his third season having seen time on-field as well.

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Chad Kanoff '17
“It’s a new team this year, and we have a good start to spring football,” Kanoff said. “We just have to know the offense at this point. We’re just aiming to get better and striving toward the championship.”

Kanoff’s goal in spring practice is efficiency.

“I’ve been working on weight and strength,” Kanoff said. “Football wise, I’m trying to make sure I’m efficient. It’s a goal for the team and individually.”

Yet, sophomore Lovett could be a dark horse in the competition for starting position. Seniority gives Kanoff and Bostic an edge in experience, but Lovett could prove ready. Recruited from DeMatha Catholic, Lovett led his high school in passing yards and passing touchdowns and successfully to a state championship.

“I’m looking to going out with this team for another football season and doing whatever the coaches ask me to do,” Lovett said. “As a unit, we aim to get better each day.”
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John Lovett '18

Though he didn’t see field time in 2014, Lovett played quarterback during Junior Varsity games. He entered spring practice with the goal of improving varying aspects of his play.

“As quarterback, you can never know enough or be accurate enough,” Lovett said. “We watch a lot of film. We’re running and throwing with receivers. Quinn and Connor provided leadership and both graduated. We all have to step up and be leaders so we can achieve our goals.”