PHILADELPHIA - There is a lot at stake Friday night at Franklin Field when Penn takes on Princeton in sprint football.
- It's Senior Night for the 14 seniors who have put together one of the best runs by a class in Penn history.
- It's Penn-Princeton, which means something to every player who has ever donned the Red and Blue.
- For two players, there is a chance to establish new Penn career records.
- Most importantly, a win for Penn secures a share of the program's fourth CSFL championship and first since 2000.
The Quakers are tied atop the CSFL standings at 3-1 (5-1 overall) along with Army and Navy. The two service academies play each other on Friday, meaning a Penn win will give the Quakers a share of the title with the winner of the Army/Navy contest. In addition, the Quakers will claim a sixth Ivy title, taking home the William R. Wagner Trophy in the process.
Penn should have no trouble finding motivation to bounce back following its first blemish of 2010 - a 36-21 loss to Army last weekend. The combination of senior celebrations, a fierce rivalry and on-the-field goals to fulfill should be enough to erase any lingering thoughts on the Army game and keep the squad's attention solely focused on all the spoils associated with a win over the Tigers.
Penn is 55-41-2 all-time against Princeton, with wins in 23-straight games over the Tigers dating back to Nov. 10, 1995 (a 39-13 win for Princeton). The two sides have already met once this season, a 48-12 win for Penn in New Jersey. Mike Bagnoli ran for 179 yards and two touchdowns. Whit Shaw was all over the place, with touchdowns via reception, run and kick return. In addition, Colin Dampier and Mark Dziemianowicz each had interception returns for touchdowns.
The Tigers are 0-6 in 2010 and are coming off a pair of losses to Army and Navy in their two most recent games.
Two Penn players have their sights set on breaking school records on Friday night. Junior quarterback Todd Busler enters the game with 2,524 passing yards, trailing leader Mike Loguidice (2,693) by 169 yards. Busler's favorite target, sophomore wide receiver Whit Shaw, has 1,276 receiving yards in his two seasons with the Quakers and needs 71 yards to surpass Patrick Monaghan's record of 1,346.
Before the game, the team will honor the 14 members of the squad that will graduate in May. The group accumulated 21 All-CSFL selections over its first three seasons at Penn, including seven first-team selections.
For all the individual accolades, without question the seniors want to go out on a high note - as CSFL champions.