Football Travels To Fordham For Season Finale
Game Day Quick Facts
The Teams: Holy Cross (5-5, 3-2 PL) vs. Fordham (1-9, 0-0 PL)
Date: November 19, 2011
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Place: Jack Coffey Field (7,000), Bronx, N.Y.
Live Video Streaming: Fordham All-Access
Holy Cross Radio: WTAG 580 AM & 94.9 FM, Worcester; Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Gordie Lockbaum, color; Click Here to Listen
Unofficial Live Statistics: Gametracker
Series Record: Fordham leads, 26-20-2
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 36, Fordham 31; October 2, 2010; Worcester, Mass.
The Series With Fordham
This will be the 49th meeting between the Crusaders and the Rams on the gridiron, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 26-20-2. The Crusaders have won three straight and four of the last five games in the series, but prior to that Fordham had won nine of the previous 11 meetings between the schools. For games played at Jack Coffey Field, the Rams hold a 5-4 advantage, winning four straight before Holy Cross posted a 41-27 victory in 2009. Since Fordham joined the Patriot League prior to the start of the 1990 season, the Rams hold an 11-10 lead in the series. The schools first met on Nov. 8, 1902, with Holy Cross winning 17-0 on the road.
Series Quick Facts
Overall: Holy Cross leads, 26-20-2
In New York: Fordham leads, 11-10-1
At Jack Coffey Field: Fordham leads, 5-4
Current Win Streak: Holy Cross, three games
Tom Gilmore vs. Fordham: 4-3
Tom Masella vs. Holy Cross: 1-4
Crusaders Look To Post Another Winning Season
If Holy Cross can defeat Fordham this week, it will finish with a winning record for the seventh year in a row. The Crusaders concluded the 2010 season with an overall mark of 6-5, after going 9-3 in 2009 (marking only the ninth time in the school history the team has won at least nine games). Holy Cross previously went 7-4 in 2006, 2007 and 2008, and its 41-25 mark over the last six seasons is its best in a six-year span since going 42-23-1 from 1989-1994. Holy Cross also posted a winning record in 2005 (6-5), and has an overall mark of 47-30 since the beginning of the 2005 campaign. The last time the Crusaders posted a winning mark in seven straight seasons came from 1986-1992.
Holy Cross Faces Tough Slate
Holy Cross has faced the hardest schedule in the NCAA football championship subdivision this season, according to the latest NCAA statistics. The 10 teams which the Crusaders have played so far this year have a cumulative record of 57-31, good for a .648 winning percentage. Holy Cross currently stands well ahead of Villanova, which has faced the second-toughest schedule with an opponent winning percentage of .607. Four of the Crusaders' five losses this year have come against teams with winning records: New Hampshire (7-3), Brown (7-2), Georgetown (8-3) and Lehigh (9-1). Holy Cross' only other loss came to Massachusetts (5-5), while it has victories over Harvard (8-1) and Bucknell (6-4).
Defense Continues Strong Play
The Holy Cross defense has played extremely well during the last few weeks. Over the last five games, the Crusaders have held their opponents to just 17.4 points, 15.8 first downs, 150.6 passing yards and 286.4 total yards per contest. On Nov. 5 at Lehigh, Holy Cross held the Mountain Hawks to just 14 points and 394 total yards, well below their averages of 37.1 points and 491.0 yards entering the game. Previously at Bucknell, the Crusaders limited the Bison to just 146 yards of total offense, 13 points and eight first downs. At one point during the second half, Holy Cross held Bucknell to three-downs-and-out on six consecutive possessions. The 146 total yards were the fewest the Crusaders had allowed since giving up only 65 yards to Georgetown on Sept. 2, 2007, while the eight first downs were the least by a Holy Cross opponent since Georgetown had only seven first downs on Sept. 5, 2009. In addition, the Crusaders totaled six quarterback sacks during the contest against Bucknell, their most in a single game since posting six sacks against Fordham on Sept. 30, 2006.
Crusaders In The Patriot League
Now in its 26th season of play in the Patriot League, Holy Cross owns an all-time record of 80-63 (.559) in conference action. The Crusaders won their last conference championship in 2009, clinching the title with a 28-26 victory over Lafayette to earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA playoffs. Holy Cross' six Patriot League championships (all of them outright) have come in 1986, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1991 and 2009. The Crusaders are tied for the second-most championships in conference history, behind only Lehigh with nine titles. In 2009, Holy Cross won five Patriot League games for just the fourth time in school history. The Crusaders previously went 5-1 in 2008, while posting 5-0 conference records in 1990 and 1991.
Ram-Crusader Cup At Stake
The winner of the contest between Holy Cross and Fordham will take home the Ram-Crusader Cup. The trophy was first dedicated in 1951 in memory of Major Frank Cavanaugh, a former head coach at both Holy Cross and Fordham. Cavanaugh posted a 16-10-2 record with the Crusaders from 1903-1905, and was later 34-14-4 with the Rams from 1927-1932. Holy Cross has won the Ram-Crusader Cup 15 times in the 25 years it has been awarded.
Trio Of Seniors Lead Linebackers
Senior linebackers C.J. Martin (Plano, Texas), Ricky Otis (Cleves, Ohio) and Jimmy Thomas (Severn, Md.) are all key parts of the Holy Cross defense in 2011. Otis leads the team with 86 tackles this season, including two sacks and eight tackles for loss. During the Lehigh game, he totaled season-high 12 tackles, a sack, an interception and a pass breakup. Otis also recorded 10 tackles with two tackles for loss against Massachusetts, while finishing with nine tackles against Brown, New Hampshire, Colgate and Lafayette. Last season, Otis led the team with 108 total tackles and earned first team All-Patriot League honors, despite missing two games due to injury. He reached double-figures in tackles six times in 2010, including a career-high 17 tackles at Lafayette. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Otis has 221 total tackles, 10 tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries and seven pass breakups. Martin ranks third on the team with 63 tackles this season, including four sacks. He had a season-best 11 tackles against Georgetown, while recording nine tackles and a sack at New Hampshire, nine tackles and an interception against Lafayette and four tackles with two sacks at Bucknell. Martin ranked second on the team with 95 total tackles last year, including 61 solo stops and two tackles for loss. He recorded double-digit tackles four times in 2010, with a high of 18 tackles at Massachusetts. Over the course of his collegiate career, Martin has recorded 191 tackles, seven tackles for loss, three interceptions and three pass breakups. Thomas has totaled 55 tackles, five tackles for loss, an interception and two pass breakups this year. He had 10 tackles, one tackle for loss and a 60-yard interception return for a touchdown against Colgate, while finishing with 10 tackles, two tackles for loss and a pass breakup at Brown. Thomas previously recorded 35 tackles with five tackles for loss in 2010, after totaling 67 tackles, nine tackles for loss and four sacks in 2009. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Thomas has 159 tackles, 19 tackles for loss and five sacks.
The Last Meeting With Fordham
Ryan Taggart completed 27 of 37 passes for 289 yards and a touchdown, in addition to rushing for 75 yards and a score on 12 carries, to lead Holy Cross to a 36-31 victory over Fordham at Fitton Field during Homecoming Weekend, on Oct. 2, 2010. Following the contest, Taggart received the Johnny Turco Memorial Trophy as the Most Valuable Player of the Crusaders' Homecoming Game. The Crusaders opened the scoring on a one-yard run by Taggart at the 9:04-mark of the first quarter. Fordham came back to put the next 14 points on the board, with a six-yard touchdown pass from Blake Wayne to Stephen Skelton and an 11-yard scoring run by Wayne, and led 14-7 at the end of the first quarter. Holy Cross opened the second quarter with a 41-yard field goal from Rob Dornfried, before regaining the lead on a 26-yard touchdown pass from Kevin Watson to Bill Edger. The Crusaders then increased their advantage to 23-14 on a 17-yard touchdown run by Sam Auffant. The Rams were able to trim the lead to 23-21 at halftime, as Wayne threw a seven-yard touchdown pass to Skelton with just 11 seconds left in the second quarter. The Crusaders began the third quarter with an 80-yard touchdown drive, culminating with a one-yard scoring run by Eddie Houghton. After Fordham's Patrick Murray kicked a 39-yard field goal, Taggart tossed an 11-yard scoring strike to Alex Schneider early in the fourth quarter to make the score 36-24. The Rams put their final points on the board with a six-yard touchdown run by Carlton Koonce with 3:59 remaining, before Holy Cross picked up two first downs on its final possession to run out the clock. Edger finished the game with eight receptions for 93 yards and a touchdown, while Auffant totaled 51 rushing yards and one score on 11 carries. Defensively, Chandler Fenner totaled six solo tackles with a sack and a forced fumble.
Fenner & Mannix Stand Out In Secondary
Senior cornerback Chandler Fenner (Virginia Beach, Va.) and junior strong safety Tom Mannix (Kenilworth, N.J.) are both enjoying strong seasons in the Holy Cross secondary. In 10 games played this year, Fenner has recorded 62 tackles, two interceptions, two forced fumbles and a team-high 13 pass breakups. During the Lafayette game, he recorded three tackles, an interception and two pass breakups. Previously at Bucknell, Fenner totaled eight tackles with a sack and a pass breakup. Some of his other top games this season have been against New Hampshire (12 tackles and a forced fumble to set up the game-tying touchdown in the fourth quarter), Brown (10 tackles, three pass breakups), Harvard (seven tackles, one interception, two pass breakups), Dartmouth (six tackles, one forced fumble) and Massachusetts (four tackles, three pass breakups). Last season, Fenner earned first team All-Patriot League honors after finishing with 58 tackles, one quarterback sack, two tackles for loss, four pass breakups, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and a blocked punt. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Fenner has now totaled 152 tackles, two interceptions, four forced fumbles and 17 pass breakups. Mannix ranks second on the team with 78 total tackles this year, to go along with three forced fumbles, an interception, a fumble recovery and nine pass breakups. During the Lehigh game, he recorded a career-high 12 total tackles with a forced fumble. Earlier in the season, Mannix had eight total tackles and an interception against Dartmouth; made 11 tackles with a forced fumble and a pass breakup against Massachusetts; and totaled 10 tackles, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and a pass breakup at New Hampshire. During his career with the Crusaders, he has now totaled 129 tackles, two interceptions, four forced fumbles and 15 pass breakups.
Football Legends Ring Of Honor Inducts Second Class
The athletic department at the College of the Holy Cross recognized four former football standouts on Sept. 1, as the second class of the Crusader Football Legends Ring of Honor. George Connor (1942-1943), Bruce Kozerski (1980-1983), Jon Morris (1961-1963) and Joe Wilson (1970-1972) were honored in a ceremony prior to the UMass game, and received permanent recognition at Fitton Field. Only former Crusader football players who have been elected to the Holy Cross Varsity Club Hall of Fame are eligible for this honor, which is an annual event each fall. In 2010, the inaugural class in the Crusader Football Legends Ring of Fame included, Gill Fenerty (Class of 1986), Gordie Lockbaum (Class of 1988), Edmund Murphy (Class of 1943), Bill Osmanski (Class of 1939), Vince Promuto (Class of 1960) and John Provost (Class of 1975).
Taggart Shines At Quarterback
Senior quarterback Ryan Taggart (Bedford, Texas) is in his second year as the starter for the Crusaders in 2011. In 10 games played this year, he has connected on 244 of 393 passes for 2,614 yards and 14 touchdowns with seven interceptions, in addition to leading the team in rushing with 433 yards and six scores on 114 carries. Last week against Lafayette, Taggart connected on 23 of 32 passes for 225 yards and two scores, while rushing for 52 yards on 12 carries. Previously at Bucknell, he completed 32 of 58 attempts for 380 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Taggart also had a huge game against Dartmouth, rushing 23 times for a career-high 176 yards, and completing 29 of 41 passes for 250 yards and two touchdowns. He set a new school single-game record for the most rushing yards by a quarterback against the Big Green, breaking the mark set by Jack Lentz against Richmond in 1964 with 173 yards. Earlier in the season at New Hampshire, Taggart completed 40 of 57 passes for a career-high 412 yards and two touchdowns, in addition to rushing for 55 yards and two scores on 12 carries. With that performance, he placed third on the Holy Cross single-game lists for both completions (40) and yards of total offense (467), while ranking ninth for passing yards (412). Taggart also played well in the win over Harvard, hitting on 22 of 35 passes for 320 yards and a touchdown, while rushing for 34 yards and a score on nine attempts. Last year, Taggart connected on 185 of 317 passes for 1,899 yards and 14 touchdowns, in addition to ranking second on the team in rushing with 284 yards and five scores on 85 carries. During his career with the Crusaders, he has now completed 431 of 712 passes for 4,516 yards and 28 touchdowns, in addition to rushing for 724 yards and 11 scores on 202 carries.
Balanced Group Of Wide Outs Excel For Holy Cross
The Crusaders have a number of outstanding weapons in the passing game this season, and they all have recorded career games so far this season. Junior wide out Gerald Mistretta (Brooklyn, N.Y.) had six catches for a career-best 136 yards and a touchdown at New Hampshire, then posted a career-high 12 receptions for 103 yards and a score against Dartmouth. Overall in 2011, Mistretta has caught 55 passes for 665 yards and six touchdowns, to lead the team in all three categories. Sophomore wide receiver Mike Fess (Caldwell, N.J.) set career-highs by catching 11 passes for 95 yards and a score at New Hampshire. On the year, Fess ranks second on the team with 42 receptions for 400 yards and two scores. Sophomore wide out Kyle Toulouse (Arlington, Va.) posted a career-high 13 receptions for a career-best 110 yards at New Hampshire, tying for second place on the school single-game list for most catches. Overall this season, Toulouse stands third on the squad with 36 catches for 367 yards and two touchdowns. Sophomore wide out Jon Smith (Matawan, N.J.) had a career-high four catches for 43 yards against UMass and three receptions for a career-high 51 yards at Bucknell, while sophomore wide receiver Nate Stanley (Euclid, Ohio) added career-highs of nine catches and 109 yards at Bucknell. Smith has totaled 22 catches for 249 yards this season, while Stanley has 18 receptions for 216 yards on the year.
Holy Cross In The NCAA Statistics
Six Crusaders are ranked among the NCAA leaders in various statistical categories, through games of Nov. 12. As a team, Holy Cross ranks eight in the nation in punt return coverage, 12th in fewest penalties and 21st in scoring defense. The rankings:
|Category||Rank||Player / Team||Avg. / Pct.|
|Passes Defended||6||Chandler Fenner||1.5|
|Total Offense||7||Ryan Taggart||304.7|
|Punt Return Coverage||8||Holy Cross||3.4|
|Fewest Penalties||12||Holy Cross||4.7|
|Fewest Penalty Yards||14||Holy Cross||40.4|
|Field Goals||17||John Macomber||1.3|
|Passing Yards||17||Ryan Taggart||261.4|
|Scoring Defense||21||Holy Cross||19.9|
|First Downs||24||Holy Cross||21.3|
|Forced Fumbles||24||Tom Mannix||0.3|
|Pass Efficiency Defense||27||Holy Cross||113.8|
|Quarterback Sacks||27||Mike Tucker||0.8|
|Passing Defense||30||Holy Cross||185.8|
|Points Responsible For||31||Ryan Taggart||12.0|
Head Coach Tom Gilmore
A two-time Patriot League Coach of the Year (in 2006 and 2009), Tom Gilmore is in his eighth season as the head football coach at Holy Cross in 2011. In 2009, Gilmore led the Crusaders to an overall record of 9-3, the Patriot League championship and a trip to the NCAA playoffs. Also a finalist for the 2009 Eddie Robinson Award, he currently owns an overall record of 50-38 during his time at Holy Cross, including a 47-30 mark since the beginning of the 2005 campaign. Gilmore has led the Crusaders to winning records in six straight seasons, including 7-4 marks in 2006, 2007 and 2008, along with winning streaks of six games (in 2008) and five games (in 2006 and 2009). Two of Gilmore's players, Dominic Randolph (2007, 2008 and 2009) and Steve Silva (2005), have been named the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year, with Silva also earning first team All-America honors. Gilmore has also led the Crusaders to four victories over ranked opponents, three of which came in 2009. Prior to his time at Holy Cross, Gilmore served as an assistant coach at Lehigh (2000-2003), Dartmouth (1992-1999), Pennsylvania (1986, 1990-1991) and Columbia (1987-1989). An Academic All-American at Pennsylvania, Gilmore graduated in 1986 with a bachelor's degree in computer mathematics. He was the Ivy League Player of the Year as a senior and helped lead the Quakers to four consecutive Ivy League titles.
Crusaders Among League Leaders
Several Holy Cross players rank at or near the top of the Patriot League standings in a number of statistical categories, through games of Nov. 12. Senior quarterback Ryan Taggart leads the way by ranking second in the league in passing yards (261.4 yards/game) and total offense (304.7 yards/game), while standing fourth in pass efficiency (126.2 rating). Junior wide receiver Gerald Mistretta stands third in the conference in both receptions (5.5 catches/game) and receiving yards (66.5 yards/game), while sophomore placekicker John Macomber (Vienna, Va.) ranks second in field goals (1.3 made/game) and fourth in scoring (5.7 points/game). In addition, sophomore cornerback Andrew Zitnik (Warren, Ohio) stands third in kickoff returns (22.6 yards/return), senior punter Corey Page (Tampa, Fla.) ranks third in punting (37.7 yards/punt), sophomore wide out Kyle Toulouse is fourth in receptions (4.7 catches/game) and sophomore wide receiver Mike Fess stands fifth in receptions (4.5 catches/game). As a team, Holy Cross leads the league in passing defense (185.8 yards/game); while standing second in passing offense (261.4 yards/game), pass efficiency defense (113.8 rating) and net punting (35.7 yards/punt); and ranking third in total defense (332.1 yards/game) and total offense (382.8 yards/game).
Taggart Climbs The Charts
Even though he is only in his second season as Holy Cross' starting quarterback, senior Ryan Taggart has already placed his name among the school's all-time leaders in a number of statistical categories. Entering this week, he ranks third in career completion percentage (.605); fifth in career pass efficiency rating (122.9); sixth in career completions (431) and career pass attempts (712); and seventh in career passing touchdowns (28), career passing yards (4,516) and career yards of total offense (5,240). With his performances so far in 2011, Taggart also stands fifth in single-season completions (244), single-season pass attempts (393) and single-season completion percentage (.621); and seventh in single-season passing yards (2,614) and single-season yards of total offense (3,047).
Defense Steps Up In The Red Zone
The Holy Cross defense has turned in some of its top performances of the 2011 season once the opposing team reaches the red zone. Overall this year, Crusader opponents have moved the ball inside the 20-yard line 41 times, and have scored only 18 touchdowns. Holy Cross has forced the opposition to attempt 16 field goals (10 of which were made), caused three turnovers (two interceptions and one fumble) and stopped the other team on fourth down three times. The Crusaders overall percentage of allowing the opposition to score just 68.3 percent of the time once reaching the red zone currently ranks 10th in the nation.
Defending The Home Turf
Holy Cross has enjoyed great success at Fitton Field over the years, and had a 4-2 mark at home in 2011. The Crusaders, who played their first game at Fitton Field in 1903, have posted an all-time home mark of 367-169-27 (.676). From Oct. 11, 2008-Oct. 9, 2010, Holy Cross had a streak of 13 straight victories at home. The Crusaders had a perfect 6-0 mark at Fitton Field in 2009, and finished the 2011 campaign with a winning record at home for the sixth straight season. Fitton Field is the second-oldest stadium still used for Division I college football, behind only Franklin Field at the University of Pennsylvania (opened in 1895).
Holy Cross has three captains during the 2011 football season. Senior offensive tackle Mike McCabe, senior linebacker Ricky Otis and senior quarterback Mark Tolzien were named the team's captains by head coach Tom Gilmore following the conclusion of spring practice. These three players have taken over the leadership role from Anthony DiMichele, Sean Lamkin and Freddie Santana, who served as the Crusaders' captains during the 2010 season.
Crusaders Bring In Academic Honors
Two Holy Cross players have been honored this season for their performance both in the classroom and on the football field. Senior offensive tackle Mike McCabe (Watertown, Conn.) was selected as a semifinalist for the 2011 William V. Campbell Trophy, presented by the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame to the top scholar-athlete in the nation. McCabe and sophomore placekicker John Macomber were also both named to the Capital One / CoSIDA Academic All-District first team. This marked the third straight season that McCabe made the Academic All-District squad.
Holy Cross has 23 seniors who will be playing in their final game against Fordham. The members of the Holy Cross senior class are tailback Matt Bellomo (Holliston, Mass.), tailback Francis Camara (Reading, Pa.), offensive guard Kyle Cannon (Southington, Conn.), cornerback Chandler Fenner, offensive guard Andrew Jameson (Brockton, Mass.), wide receiver Josh Jenkins (Maywood, Ill.), free safety Cav Koch (Dallas, Texas), linebacker C.J. Martin, wide receiver Clinton McCabe (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.), offensive tackle Mike McCabe, wide receiver Charles McCall (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), defensive end Ryan McGinn (West Chester, Pa.), defensive tackle Eric Oldiges (Taylor Mill, Ky.), linebacker Ricky Otis, punter Corey Page, tight end Alex Schneider (Inver Grove Heights, Minn.), quarterback Ryan Taggart, placekicker Paul Tearson (Austin, Texas), linebacker Jimmy Thomas, quarterback Mark Tolzien (Rolling Meadows, Ill.), quarterback Kevin Watson (Belle Mead, N.J.), center Sean Whited (Canton, Ohio) and tight end Mike Wright (Quincy, Mass.). The Crusader seniors have led the team to a 27-17 record over the last four seasons, including the 2009 Patriot League championship and a trip to the 2009 NCAA playoffs.
Tradition Of Excellence
The 2011 campaign marks the 116th season of Holy Cross football. The Crusaders currently own an overall record of 604-477-54, good for a .556 winning percentage. Prior to the start of the 2011 season, Holy Cross' 599 all-time victories ranked as the 16th most among all Division I-AA schools. Holy Cross has had 31 first team All-America selections, sent 69 players on to professional football, won five Lambert Cups, claimed six Patriot League championships, and was named the Division I-AA Team of the Year in 1987. The Crusaders also played in the 1946 Orange Bowl, losing to host Miami on the game's final play.
Crusaders On The Radio
All of Holy Cross' games in 2011 will air on WTAG 580 AM and 94.9 FM in Worcester. Holy Cross Hall of Famer Bob Fouracre is in his 42nd season calling the play-by-play for Holy Cross football, and his 26th year covering the Crusaders on the radio. Former Holy Cross standouts Tom Kelleher and Gordie Lockbaum will serve as color commentators for selected games this season. All of the Crusaders' games will also be available free of charge over the internet by clicking here. In addition, WCHC 88.1 FM, the Holy Cross student station, will carry a number of games this year.
Holy Cross On Television
The Crusaders had five games shown on live television during the 2011 season. Here is a look at Holy Cross' television schedule from the 2011 campaign:
Sept. 1 vs. Massachusetts: CBS Sports Network
Sept. 17 vs. Harvard: Charter TV3
Oct. 15 vs. Dartmouth: Charter TV3
Nov. 5 at Lehigh: Service Electric
Nov. 12 vs. Lafayette: Lafayette Sports Network
The Holy Cross Football Show
Every Tuesday during the season, head coach Tom Gilmore will be joined by Bob Fouracre for the Holy Cross Football Show. The show airs live from 1:00-1:30 p.m. exclusively on the internet, with archives of all the shows available to those who can not listen in live. The show is carried free of charge, and can be heard by clicking here.
Live video streaming of several 2011 Holy Cross regular season home football games will be available over the internet through Crusader Vision. The package, done in association with Stretch Internet, is available for $8.95 per game. For details on how to view games through Crusader Vision, click here.
Scouting The Rams
Fordham enters this week's game with an overall record of 1-9 and an 0-5 mark against opponents in the Patriot League. The Rams have lost their last eight games, since posting a 21-14 victory over Columbia on Sept. 17. Junior quarterback Ryan Higgins has completed 128 of 222 pass attempts for 1,550 yards and five touchdowns with 11 interceptions this season. Senior tailback Darryl Whiting has rushed for 576 yards and a score on 151 carries, while freshman wide out Brian Wetzel has a team-best 35 receptions for 463 yards. Defensively, the Rams are led by junior linebacker Michael Martin, who has totaled 89 tackles and two tackles for loss and two pass breakups this season. Head coach Tom Masella is in his sixth season at the helm of the Fordham program, where he has posted a 27-39 record. Prior to his time with the Rams, Masella served as the head coach at Central Connecticut State (2004-2005), Boston University (1996-1997) and Fairfield (1995).
Sophomore placekicker John Macomber has connected on 12 out of 14 field goal attempts this season. He has tied both the school single-season record of 12 field goals made (which has been done five times) and the single-season mark for field goal percentage (with Chris Vella, who made 12 of 14 attempts in 2002) ... Junior tailback Eddie Houghton (Toronto, Ontario) scored a career-high two touchdowns during last week's victory over Lafayette. He now ranks second on the team in rushing with 353 yards on 71 carries in nine games played ... Sophomore linebacker Mike Tucker (Chester Springs, Pa.) recorded four total tackles and three quarterback sacks during the victory over Bucknell. He now leads the team with eight sacks on the season, while totaling 23 tackles ... The Holy Cross defense recorded four quarterback sacks during the Nov. 5 game at Lehigh. The Mountain Hawks had previously allowed only eight total sacks in their first eight games of the season combined ... During the Oct. 29 game against Georgetown, the Crusaders wore pink shoelaces as part of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month ... Senior quarterback Ryan Taggart had a school-record streak of 209 consecutive passes thrown without an interception from Oct. 23, 2010-Oct. 1, 2011 ... In the victory over Colgate on Sept. 10, the Holy Cross offense averaged 7.8 yards per play, and did not punt once the entire game ... During the season-opening game against Massachusetts on Sept. 1, a total of 15,942 fans showed up at Fitton Field. That marked the largest home attendance for the Crusaders since Oct. 20, 1990, when a crowd of 17,848 was on hand to watch Holy Cross defeat Lehigh 34-22 ... Holy Cross was picked third in the 2011 Patriot League preseason poll of the conference's head coaches and sports information directors, behind Lehigh and Colgate ... In three of the last four years, the Holy Cross football team has received an NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate Public Recognition Award, for posting multi-year APR scores in the top 10 percent of all football squads in the nation.