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PHILADELPHIA – A nation’s eyes will be on the defending Ivy League champions as the University of Pennsylvania will make a program-record six national television appearances as announced by the Ivy League as part of the Ancient Eight’s largest-ever national television package.
“Our program is excited to have six chances to showcase itself on national television,” George A. Munger Head Coach of Football Ray Priore said. “There is a lot of passion and pride in Ivy League football, and to be able to play more than half our games in front of a national audience means a lot to our student-athletes who proudly wear the Red and Blue today and those who have done so previously.”
17-time Ivy League champions, and coming off a 2015 where the Red and Blue won their final six Ivy games to capture another Ancient Eight crown, Penn will appear on NBC Sports Network three times in 2016 – most of any Ivy League team and most for a Penn team since doing so in both 2011 and 2012.
All three of the NBCSN appearances are on Friday nights, including an always-anticipated matchup with Harvard on November 11 from Franklin Field. The two programs have had at least a share of 14 of the last 16 Ivy League championships and have split the past 10 meetings.
Other NBCSN games for the Quakers are road games at Dartmouth (September 30) and Yale (October 21). Last year, the Quakers bested the Bulldogs, 34-20, in a Friday night game on NBCSN from Franklin Field.
In addition to the NBCSN games, the Red and Blue will make three other national TV appearances.
On October 15, Penn’s One World Sports debut will surely have the eye of Ivy League football fans as Columbia visits Franklin Field for a 3 p.m. kickoff as the Quakers look to extend their 19-game win streak over the Lions.
For the second straight year, Penn and Princeton will met on American Sports Network when the Quakers head to New Jersey on November 5. Last year, the national audience was treated to a thriller as Penn defeated Princeton, 26-23, in overtime after the Quakers blocked a potential game-winning field goal as time expired in regulation.
The regular season will conclude on November 19 when Fox College Sports broadcasts the 123rd all-time meeting between Penn and Cornell from Ithaca. It is likely to be a “Championship Saturday” of sorts for the Ivy League as three of the League’s four games will be broadcast on national TV.
National TV Notes…
• Six national TV appearances is a program-record, surpassing the four appearances in 2011
• Six national TV appearances in 2016 is tied for the most by an Ivy League team
• Three NBCSN appearances in 2016 is the most by an Ivy League team
• Penn is 24-13 all-time on national TV
• Last season, Penn was 3-0 on national TV
• Penn is 6-1 all-time on national TV against Dartmouth
• Penn is 4-1 all-time on national TV against Princeton
• Penn is 4-3 all-time on national TV against Yale
• Penn is 4-0 all-time on national TV against Columbia
• Penn is 3-3 all-time on national TV against Harvard
• Penn is 2-2 all-time on national TV against Cornell
• Penn played in the first ever televised college football game, beating Maryland, 51-0, on October 5, 1940 in a game televised by Philco (now KYW)
In his second season as the George A. Munger Head Coach of Football, Ray Priore will return 38 letterwinners and 16 starters from a 2015 team which went 7-3 and posted road wins at No. 4 Villanova and No. 12 Harvard – Penn’s first season with multiple road wins at Top-25 opponents.
Headlining the returning players are five All-Ivy selections from 2015, including first-team selections quarterback Alek Torgersen and Justin Watson. They will be joined by offensive lineman Daniel Poulos – a second-team All-Ivy selection – and honorable mention selections offensive lineman Nick Demes and linebacker Donald Panciello.
Watson enters the season coming off a 2015 where he led the Ivy League in receptions (74,), receiving yards (1,082) and receiving touchdowns (nine) to finish runner-up in Ivy League Offensive Player of the Year voting and earn third-team All-American honors. Already this preseason, Watson has been named second-team STATS FCS Preseason All-American and is one of 22 players on the STATS FCS Offensive Player of the Year Watch List.
Torgersen led the Ivy League – and was No. 2 nationally – in completion percentage in 2015, finishing 69% of his passes. He enters 2016 with 4,794 career passing yards – No. 4 all-time at Penn – and his 35 career touchdown passes are also fourth all-time by a Quaker.
The Quakers received the most first place votes (9) of any team in the 2016 Ivy League Preseason Media Poll, and were chosen second overall.
Season tickets to Penn Football are on sale now. Single-game tickets and group packages will go on sale August 15 via PennAthletics.com and the Penn Athletics Box Office. The Box Office can be contacted at 215.898.6151 or in person at Weightman Hall.