As the football team finished its season with its fourth straight victory over Yale, the Back Page gives you an opportunity to meet captain Collin Zych, an unanimous selection to the All-Ivy First Team announced today. In this exclusive interview, Zych reveals his embarrassing fumble return, why he would want to play basketball, and which Olympic gold medalist he would like to date. Every week, The Full-Court Press will give you the sort of personal scoop that you’re not likely to hear at a typical press conference.
Name: Collin Zych
Stats: In his three seasons on the field, Zych accumulated 224 total tackles, 10.5 tackles for a loss, six interceptions, and 27 pass breakups. This season, Zych ended the season tied for a team-high 79 tackles. He also led the Crimson with 40 solo tackles, three interceptions and 12 passes defended.
Now, to the questions!
1. Typical pre-game meal.
I just eat what I normally would, nothing too fancy. No fried food though.
After a year in which they intimidated everybody in their path, it was fitting that senior Josue Ortiz and captain Collin Zych were the only two defensive players to be selected unanimously to the All-Ivy First Team. Harvard's leader on the defensive line, Ortiz finished the season as the Ancient Eight's leader in tackles for loss and the runner-up in sacks, with 7.5 and 13.5 respectively. Zych, meanwhile, finished the season with 79 tackles to bring his career total to 224.
Joining the two of them on the first team is senior running back Gino Gordon, who last night received the Frederick Greeley Crocker Award as the team's most valuable player. Gordon was the first Crimson back since Clifton Dawson '07 to rush for over 1000 yards in a season, finishing the 2010 campaign with 1059 yards. He also graduates as Harvard's all-time leader in yards per carry with 5.3.
The Game has ended, and Thanksgiving is here. But even though the fall season is (basically) over, there is still plenty to talk about in Ivy League sports. Three Ancient Eight student-athletes, who put a special emphasis on the “student” half, were honored as Rhodes Scholars; two Ivy men’s soccer teams are making a deep run in the NCAA tournament; Princeton runners impressed at nationals; and football handed out its postseason superlatives. Put down your turkey leg, and join me around the water cooler.
In addition to Harvard’s own Baltazar Zavala, a senior wide receiver on the football team, Dartmouth’s Gabrielle Emanuel and Yale’s William Zeng were chosen as Rhodes Scholars last weekend. Emanuel, who graduated summa cum laude last June, was a rider on the Big Green’s equestrian team and is currently working on a water access and purification program in Mali. Zeng is a member of the Bulldogs’ lightweight crew team and plans to study mathematics and the foundations of computer science at Oxford.
Sophomore guard Christian Webster followed up a 29-point performance against Mercer on Saturday with a less flashy but very critical showing against Bryant this afternoon. With only 23 seconds left on the clock, Webster sank one of his two three-pointers of the afternoon to put Harvard up by two. The sophomore finished the game with nine points in 37 minutes, a sharp contrast from his production over the weekend, but his effort was nonetheless important for the Crimson's winning ways. Harvard has won the past three games after starting out the season with a loss to George Mason.
Another important highlight of the game was the return of sophomore forward Kyle Casey, who is recovering from a broken foot, an injury sustained previous to the start of the season. The forward played only a limited amount of minutes (14) but was able to contribute five points, two of which came from the free-throw line. The reigning Ivy League Rookie of the Year is obviously taking his time in an effort to return to the starting five. With several games left in its nonconference schedule and players like Webster stepping up for the team, the Crimson can afford to rest the star forward in order to get him ready for Ivy League play starting in January.
Junior linebacker Alex Gedeon was chosen by his teammates to be the 138th captain of Harvard football.
Before the Crimson football team’s matchup with Penn on Nov. 13, Harvard coach Tim Murphy noted that Collin Zych and Alex Gedeon acted like the two captains of defense. Turns out Murphy’s analysis was spot on.
The coach announced at the team banquet tonight that Gedeon, a junior this year, was elected by his teammates to replace outgoing senior Zych as the official team captain. The third-year linebacker, who posted 49 tackles and tied for second on the team with two interceptions in addition to occasional punting duty in 2010, takes over as the 138th captain of Harvard football, an honor that Zych carried well enough to earn his own accolade this evening—the Robert F. Kennedy Award for desire and determination.