Out of Left Feld
This Saturday’s Harvard-Penn game could have been the biggest of the year, another de facto Ivy League Championship Game in a long line of them. But then the Quakers played the fourth quarter last week.
Penn had jumped out to a 16-0 lead over Princeton at Franklin Field and held a lead midway through the third quarter. Then the Tigers pounced. The Quakers’ 23-17 advantage turned into a 24-23 deficit, and then a 31-23 hole. Princeton’s defense held Penn to 41 fourth-quarter yards while the visitors pulled away from the defending Ivy champions, 38-26.
Just before Saturday’s postgame press conference, an extra chair was added to the front of the room. Then the Harvard players walked in, including co-captain Josh Boyd and fellow fifth-year senior Nnamdi Obukwelu, who account for over 500 lbs. combined. But wedged in between them, occupying the extra seat, was walk-on kicker Andrew Flesher, the blonde and bespectacled 6’3”, 190 lb. junior.
Flesher did not even plan on playing football when he first got to campus. He thought he was going to play golf, but decided to walk on after talking with Crimson coaches. Saturday, that decision paid off, as his 23-yard chip shot from left of the fairway lifted Harvard past Dartmouth, 24-21.
The final notes were the same, but the songs were completely different.
Just like last year’s rendition, the 106th edition of the Harvard-Princeton game ended with Roman Wilson catching a touchdown pass from Quinn Epperly.
Walking around campus Friday, it’s easy to tell that winter is here. Yes, temperatures are dropping into the low 30s and those seersucker shorts are finally on sale, but it’s not Mother Nature or J Press that determine when fall ends. It is Harvard’s Office of Career Services.
Thursday, Oct. 24, marked the end of the fall recruiting season for on-campus interviews. The hordes of suited seniors strutting through the square have gone south for the winter. The dining halls will no longer reverberate with the sweet sounds of ridicule lobbed at students who swore they’d never go into consulting a few short months ago and now find themselves preparing for their fourth interview in four days.
It always happens so fast.
One second, Harvard’s opponent is driving. This week, it was Lafayette, which opened the fourth quarter at the Crimson’s 22-yard line. Down 21-3, a touchdown would have made things interesting with plenty of time left.