PHILADELPHIA - Picked to finish second in the 2012 Ivy League Preseason Media Poll on Tuesday, the University of Pennsylvania football team may be right where it wants to be.
The team slated to finish second in the Ivy preseason poll has gone on to win the Ivy title in each of the last three seasons, including the last two times the Quakers were predicted to finish as the runner-up (2009 and 2010).
For the fourth straight year, Harvard and Penn claimed the top two spots as the Crimson were picked to repeat as league champions at Tuesday's annual Ivy League Football Media Day teleconference. In each of the last five seasons, either Harvard or Penn has claimed at least a share of the Ivy title.
The Ivy League Football Preseason Media Poll has 17 total voters consisting of two media members from each school and one national media representative. Two members of the poll picked Penn as the favorite to claim its third Ivy League championship in the last four seasons.
The Quakers have now been selected in the top four of the preseason poll for 20 consecutive seasons. The last time the Quakers were not predicted to finish in the top half of the Ivy League was in 1992, one month prior to the program's first game under the direction of head coach Al Bagnoli.
Harvard received 13 first-place votes and finished with 132 points. Penn garnered 111 points, while Cornell earned the other two first-place votes and finished third in the voting with 100 points. Brown rounded out the top four with 84 points and was followed by Yale (66 points), Dartmouth (52), Columbia (36) and Princeton (31).
Penn, which finished second in the Ivy League in 2011 (5-5, 4-3 Ivy), returns 39 letterwinners, including 17 starters and three All-Ivy honorees. Eight starters will return from the Ivies third-highest scoring offense and seven starters are back from the league's second-ranked rushing defense. Both specialists - punter Scott Lopano and kicker Connor Loftus - will also return for the Quakers.
The Quakers report to preseason camp on August 20 and will officially kick off their 136th season with the season opener at Lafayette on Sept. 15. Penn's first home game is set for a week later,
Sept. 22, against cross-city rival Villanova in another edition of the
Schuylkill Showdown. Season tickets are available here and individual game tickets go on sale August 15.
2012 IVY LEAGUE FOOTBALL PRESEASON MEDIA POLL