No. 18/19 Football on National TV Saturday at Princeton

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PHILADELPHIA - After defeating four straight Ivy unbeatens, No. 18/19 Penn stands as the only unblemished team in league play. Saturday, a national television audience will look on as the Quakers try to extend their eight-game Ivy road winning streak at arch rival Princeton on VERSUS at 3 p.m.

Catching the Game!!
Television : VERSUS. Mike Crispino (play by play) and Ross Tucker (analyst) will have the call. For a full listing of VERSUS channels and locations, click here.

Radio: The game can be heard nationally as the Ivy League Game of the Week on SIRIUS Channel 130 and locally on WFIL 560AM. Brian Seltzer and Hench Murray will team up as the Penn broadcast crew for the third straight season with Seltzer supplying the play-by-play and Murray serving as the analyst for the 30th year in a row. You can listen online here.

Live Stats: Live stats can be found here. A full recap and box score will be available at the conclusion of the game at PennAtheltics.com.

Princeton Stadium: Nothing beats watching the Quakers in person. If you're near Princeton, N.J., on Saturday, head on over to Princeton Stadium to support the Red and Blue! For directions and venue information, click here.

The Penn-Princeton Series
Princeton leads the all-time series with 63 wins in the first 101 meetings. The teams tied once in their history, a 6-6 tilt at Franklin Field in 1942. The series record is a little skewed as the Tigers won the first 28 meetings from 1876 to 1891. Since then, the Quakers lead the series 37-35-1. Since Princeton Stadium was completed in 1996, the Quakers have won six of the seven times they’ve visited. Coach Bagnoli is 13-5 all-time against Penn’s arch rival and 7-2 in Princeton.

A Reason to Root for Princeton
There is seldom the occassion where the Penn faithful will find themselves rooting for their arch rivals. However, all of those in Red and Blue are rooting for Tigers running back Jordan Culbreath. The Ivy League’s leading rusher in 2008 was diagnosed with aplastic anemia last season, a rare and life-threatening condition that occurs when the body stops producing enough new blood cells. He is back on the field this year and leads the Tigers in rushing.

Samson Setting Records
Senior placekicker Andrew Samson is eight points away from becoming Penn’s all-time leading scorer. Last week he moved past running back Bryan Keys (1897-89) who had 210 points from a school-record 35 touchdowns. Samson’s 211 points trails Jason Feinberg (1998-2000). Feinberg also holds the all-time Penn mark with 95 career extra points, which is just one more than Samson’s 94. Also, Samson trails Feinberg by two for the school career benchmark in made field goals.

Ragone on the Run
Billy Ragone has limited mistakes this year and is a big reason why Penn is sixth in the nation in sacks allowed. Ragone has not thrown an interception since Oct. 2 and has been sacked just once in the last four games. In fact, in his eight-game career, Ragone has been sacked just twice on 90 pass attempts and 155 dropbacks—that’s one sack for every 45 pass attempts, or once for every 77.5 dropbacks.

First-Place Frenzy
Thus far, Penn is having a banner year. Four Penn teams are in first place right now (sprint football, men’s soccer, women’s soccer and football) and all play Princeton this weekend. For the first time in Ivy history, the top two teams in both men’s soccer and women’s soccer will play for the Ivy title on the same campus on the same day. Penn needs a win or tie at second-place Princeton to win the women’s soccer title, while both men’s soccer teams are 5-0 in league play. The sprint football teams play Friday night where Penn can clinch the Ivy title and a share of the national title with the win. In Princeton Saturday, football kicks off at 3 p.m., women’s soccer kicks off at 4 p.m. and men’s soccer kicks off at 7 p.m.

Winning Streaks #1
Penn is one of just six Division I teams with an active conference winning streak of 10 or more games. The Quakers’ 12-game streak is fourth in all of Division I and ranks second among FCS schools. It also matches the sixth-longest streak in Ivy history. Meanwhile, the Quakers are tied for ninth in the FCS with their eight-game home winning streak.

Longest Conference Win Streaks - Division I
1. Appalachain State, 25 (Southern)
2. Boise State, 19 (WAC)
3. TCU, 14 (Mountain West)
4. PENN, 12 (Ivy League)
5. Robert Morris, 11 (Northeast)
6. Central Florida, 10 (C-USA)
italics = FBS school

Winning Streaks #2 - Team October
Penn has lost 10 of its last 12 games in the month of September. However, when the calender turns to October, the Red and Blue have been unbeatable—lieterally. Penn went undefeated in October for the third straight season and will enter the 11th month of 2011 on a 14-game October winning streak. The last time the Quakers lost a game in the month of October was on the 27th of 2007 at Brown (31-17). The last home game they lost in that month was a week earlier, in triple overtime to Yale (26-20).

Winning Streaks #3 - Best Start Since...
With six wins in its first seven games, Penn is off to its first 6-1 start since the 2004 season. The Quakers defeated Princeton in Game No. 8 that year to move to 7-1 before dropping the remaining de facto Ivy title game to Harvard the next week.

Taking Their Time
Penn has dominated time of possession over the last two seasons. The Quakers have held the ball longer than their opponent in every game this season and in 14 of the last 15 games overall (Penn is 14-1 in that time). The only time Penn lost the time of possession battle in that span was at Harvard on Nov. 14, 2009—but Penn won the game, 17-7. Aiding this ball control effort are scoring drives of 70-plus yards. Penn has had at least one in every game this season and in 10 straight games overall, dating back to Oct. 31, 2009 at Brown (longest drive was “only” 65 yards).

Quick Quaker Notes
Penn has scored 24 or more points in five straight games for the first time since 2002-03 ... The Quakers have either led or been tied in the fourth quarter in 16 straight game ... Penn has gone 31 games without allowing a 100-yard rusher (the last to do so was Yale’s Mike McLeod with 147 on Oct. 20, 2007) ... Penn has won 14 of its last 15 games overall and 17 of the last 19 against Ivy opponents ... The Red and Blue have won the last 15 games in which they’ve held their opponent under 10 points ... Penn has a rushing touchdown in each of the last 10 games.

Last Week
Billy Ragone rushed for 151 yards and a score to push Penn into sole possession of first-place in the Ivy League with a 24-7 win over Brown in front of 14,854 Homecoming fans at Franklin Field. Penn needed only 1:39 of the second quarter to get on the board. Ragone found daylight up the middle and broke from the pack before deking a Brown defensive back and finding the end zone. The run covered 54 yards, the longest of his career. The lead lasted 13 seconds. Brown took the ensuing kickoff, the ball was handed to Mark Kachmer on a reverse on the return, and he went the distance down the left sideline to paydirt. Penn responded with a more methodical drive that led to another touchdown. And then took over at midfield on its next possession. Ragone scrambled for another lengthy run that covered 35 yards and got the ball to the Brown 15. From there, the Quakers needed two more plays to get into the end zone. After yet another Brown punt to open the second half, the Quakers were stopped on their own 32-yard line, but a roughing the punter penalty gave the Red and Blue new life and seven plays later they were at the Bears’ 24-yard line. Settling for a field goal, senior Andrew Samson had little trouble, knocking through a career-long 46-yard field goal. Brown penetrated into Penn territory early in the fourth quarter and were forced into going for it on 4th-and-9 from the Penn 28. The pass was broken up by senior Drew Goldsmith and the Bears never really threatend Penn’s unblemished record again.

Up Next
Its Senior Day for the Quakers as they play host to Harvard. Kickoff from Franklin Field is at 1:30 p.m. The game can be seen in HD online on the Penn Sports Network. Penn will honor its 33 seniors prior to the game.

Download: 8-Princeton.pdf