College Football

Ivy teams to kick off highly anticipated season


STATS FCS Senior Editor

(STATS) - As Ivy League teams get set to kick off their season on Saturday, it's easy to picture defending champion Princeton building on last year's perfect record.

Or maybe Dartmouth is primed to continue its recent dominance following a season in which a five-point loss to Princeton was its only blemish.

Oh yes, neither of those teams are even the league's preseason favorite - an honor, or is it a target, that's bestowed on Yale, the 2017 champion.

The 2019 season promises to be memorable for the Ancient Eight. Not only will the title race be full of potentially elite teams, but as college football celebrates its 150th anniversary, the Ivies will be right smack in the middle of it considering Princeton played in the first game in 1869. The Tigers will help mark the anniversary with a game against Dartmouth on Nov. 9 at Yankee Stadium.

But league members first must get started on their season against nonleague opponents that have played two or three games already.

Only two Ivy teams will play at home Saturday, Yale against Holy Cross (1-1) and Princeton against Butler (1-2). Coach Bob Surace's Tigers went 10-0 last year for their first unbeaten season since 1964.

Ivy teams opening on the road are Penn at No. 20 Delaware (2-1), Dartmouth at Jacksonville (1-1), Brown at Bryant (0-3), Columbia at Saint Francis (2-1), Cornell at Marist (1-1) and Harvard at San Diego (0-2). James Perry will make his Brown head coaching debut against the Bryant program he guided the last two seasons.

Ivy teams will play 10 straight weeks, concluding their season on Nov. 23.

Updated September 18, 2019

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