Former Crimson standout Ryan Fitzpatrick '05 has made strides with the Buffalo Bills. Will it be enough to keep his starting job next season?
There’s no question it’s been a breakout season for Ryan Fitzpatrick ’05. From 2005-2009, the former Ivy League Player of the Year passed for 4,104 yards and tallied 21 touchdown passes in 28 NFL games. This year, in just 11 contests, he’s already thrown for 2,526 yards and matched his previous career total for TD’s against just 11 interceptions. The former Crimson star’s passer rating (85.0) is by far the highest of his career, and, like he did in college, Fitzpatrick is making a difference on the ground, averaging 21.5 rushing yards a game.
Fitzpatrick, rated by the Sporting News as the fifth smartest player in sports (Matt Birk ’98 finished sixth), has also helped a pretty awful Bills team to three wins.
And people are noticing. Yahoo! sports called him “the best NFL QB for the buck,” given his modest pro salary of three million dollars, and The New York Times intimated that he could be a franchise player.
But things aren’t as cheery for Fitzpatrick as they might seem. Since Buffalo holds the fourth-worst record in the NFL, it should be in good position to pick a top quarterback from a 2011 draft class that could include Heisman winner Cam Newton and Heisman finalist Andrew Luck. If the Bills invest in such a high-profile signal caller—one who will command top-five money that makes Fitzpatrick's deal look like chump change—it will leave the Crimson alum where he found himself at the beginning of this year: on the bench.
Published by Ricky Liu
on December 17, 2010 at 3:11AM
Each Thursday (natch, Friday), The Crimson will compile a series of unique statistics about Harvard's sports scene. Welcome to the Magic of Numbers—without the problem sets. We'll do the math for you.
CRIMSON VS. HUSKIES
2009 – Year that UConn’s men’s basketball team last made an appearance in the NCAA tournament. The Huskies have made 28 postseason appearances in the history of the program. Harvard looks to extend its two-game win streak when it heads on the road to take on UConn next Wednesday. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN3.
64 – Number of years since the Crimson’s sole appearance in the NCAA tournament (1946).
8 – Number of wins for the Huskies this season. UConn has gone undefeated in its first eight games to start this season and is ranked fourth in the nation in both the AP Top 25 and USA Today Coaches’ Polls.
28.1 – Points per game for the Huskies’ leading scorer, guard Kemba Walker. Walker is ranked second in the nation in scoring and is also shooting over 40 percent from beyond the three-point line.
16.6 – Points per game for Harvard’s leading scorer, sophomore guard Christian Webster. Webster leads the Ivy League in scoring and is shooting exactly 40 percent from downtown.
13 – Number of former UConn players currently playing in the NBA.
1 – Number of former Crimson basketball players currently playing in the NBA. Jeremy Lin ’10 became the first Harvard player to play in the NBA in 57 years when he signed with the Golden State Warriors this past summer after going undrafted in the 2010 NBA Draft.
For Radcliffe alum Esther Lofgren '07-'09, 2010 keeps getting better and better. Already a world champion, the rower gained further recognition for her crew's performance when the US national team women's 8+ was nominated for row2k's crew of the year. On Nov. 7 in Lake Karapiro, New Zealand, Lofgren's eight took the competition by storm, winning the world championships by a margin of nearly four seconds. The race capped off a strong year for the women's 8+, which also won at the World Cup stop in Lucerne, Switzerland.
Lofgren stroked the women's eight in Lucerne but moved to the five seat for the World Championships. Meanwhile, the current leaders in the fan voting, the U23 pair of Ashley Kroll and Felice Mueller, were guided by Harvard's own Linda Muri. Muri, coach of the Crimson lightweight freshmen, coached the U23 women's pair, four, and eight this summer, helping all three boats win gold in their respective events. Radcliffe co-captain Olivia Coffey was a member of that women's eight.
Updated 12/18/10 12:26 a.m.
The most wonderful time of the year is almost upon us, but first we have to slog through what is certainly the least wonderful time. Yes, finals are here. And even worse, Ivy League sports have slowed down too, with many athletes either in the throes of exams or enjoying their first few days of winter break. But that’s okay: we still have some interesting stuff to share with you. So put down your books for a second, and let’s take a timeout around the water cooler.
Yes, we know, it’s been a long time since football season ended. But it’s not our fault the awards keep rolling in.
Columbia tight end Andrew Kennedy and Harvard defensive lineman Josue Ortiz joined the 2010 Walter Camp Football Championship Subdivision All-America Team. Kennedy had a strong year for the Lions, tallying 616 receiving yards and nine touchdowns for the Lions. Meanwhile, Ortiz ripped it up for the Crimson, finishing second in the Ancient Eight with 7.5 sacks.
Additionally, 11 other Ivy League players were named to the FCS All-New England All-Star Team, including the Ivy League Co-Players of the year, Dartmouth’s Nick Schwieger and Harvard senior Gino Gordon.
Co-captain Dean Gibbons, along with junior Terry White, was named to the Inside Lacrosse preseason All-America team.
Despite the current temperature in Cambridge, here’s a reminder that warm weather is not so far away. In anticipation of the spring athletic season, the Harvard men’s lacrosse team earned various team and individual accolades this week.
Former Crimson midfielder Jason Duboe ’10 was drafted by the Boston Cannons in the MLL 2011 Supplemental Draft on Tuesday. Boston picked up Duboe in the sixth round with the 34th overall draft pick. Duboe was honored on two Tewaarton Trophy Watch Lists during his time at Harvard and was a finalist for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS award in his final season. The midfielder is one of 10 former Ivy League standouts to be drafted this week (to see the full results of the draft, click here).
Luckily for the Crimson, despite Duboe’s absence from the roster this season, Harvard still appears to be in good hands. In a Lax News preseason poll, the Crimson was ranked No. 16 nationally. Two returning Harvard standouts earned individual preseason honors as well.