Harvard vs. Columbia
Cornerback Raishaun McGhee recorded a career-high 14 tackles and made an interception in the 23-21 win at Dartmouth Oct. 29 (Gil Talbot).
After concluding its first three-game road trip in 128 years, the No. 22/23 Harvard football team will return home to the friendly confines of Harvard Stadium to host Columbia Saturday, Nov. 5 in an Ivy League matchup on ONE World Sports and the Ivy League Digital Network. The Crimson remains undefeated in Ancient Eight play at 4-0 and is 6-1 overall, while the Lions head to Cambridge 2-5 and 1-3.
Saturday's game will be the 75th all-time meeting between the Crimson and Lions, with Harvard holding a sizable advantage in the series, 59-14-1. Harvard has won 12-straght against Columbia and has taken 10 consecutive at Harvard Stadium.
The Crimson held off Dartmouth, 23-21, to earn its 13-straight Ivy League road win Oct. 29, establishing a new program and conference record for consecutive Ancient Eight victories as a visiting team. Against the Big Green, Joe Viviano went 19-of-30 for 206 yards and added passing and rushing TD, while Charlie Booker paced the rushing attack with 17 carries for 78 yards.
Defensively, Raishaun McGhee amassed a career-best 14 tackles, had 1.0 tackles for a loss, two pass breakups and an interception.
For the year, Viviano is completing 64.3 percent of his passes (117-of-182) and has 1,356 yards through the air. He has thrown 10 TDs, while rushing for five more. Semar Smith (67.2 yards per contests) is the team's leading rusher, while Justice Shelton-Mosley is averaging 80.8 receiving yards per game.
Columbia is coming off a 31-23 defeat to Yale Oct. 28. QB Anders Hill completed 24-of-46 passes for 289 yards and three TDs, two of which went to Ronald Smith (six catches, 114 yards). Hill has four TD strikes in 2016. Gianmarco Rea paces the Lions with 73 tackles, including 11.0 for a loss.
Ivy Standings Picture
With three conference games remaining, Harvard sits in a first-place tie with Penn, as both teams own 4-0 Ivy records. Princeton stands third at 3-1. Harvard is off to its third-straight season with a 4-0 conference mark.
Ancient Eight Road Victories
Harvard has rattled off 13-straight Ivy League road wins, a program and conference record.
12 - Harvard (1974-77)
12 – Penn (2002-05)
12 – Penn (2008-11)
Third and Got It
The Crimson is converting 50 percent (58-of-116) of its third-down opportunities, a number that ranks sixth in the FCS. Harvard has also connected on .571 percent of its fourth-down tries (4-of-7).
The duo of Justice Shelton-Mosley and Anthony Firkser has combined for 932 yards on 69 catches this season, each averaging over 75 yards per game. Both surpassed 100 yards receiving in the opening contest against URI, and Firkser neared the 150 mark against Georgetown. The tight end has six touchdowns to his credit through seven games.
The Crimson ranks 14th and 18th in the FCS in rushing and scoring defense, respectively. The Crimson has allowed 105.9 yards rushing and 20.1 points per game.
Tim Murphy ranks tied for second all-time in Ivy League wins.
Carm Cozza Yale 135
Tim Murphy Harvard 114
Al Bagnoli Penn/Columbia 114
Bob Blackman Dartmouth/Cornell 100
Joe Restic Harvard 92
Better Than Average
Harvard has clinched its 119th season at .500 or better in the program's 144-year history. It also marks the Crimson's 19th-straight year at .500 or better.
Harvard is 38-10 in its last 48 road games (.792). The Crimson is 30-5 (.857) in its last 35 Ivy League road games.
Harvard ripped off 16-straight wins over non-Ivy opponents from 2011-16. It marked the longest streak in Ivy League history.
16 – Harvard (2011-2016)
10 – Yale (1999-2002)
10 – Princeton (1993-96)
10 – Dartmouth (1994-97)
10 – Cornell (1970-74) – 1 tie
Harvard Owns New England
Since 1994, the Crimson owns a record of 117-44 (.727) in games played in New England. Since the 2001 campaign, Harvard stands at 92-17 (.844), and the team is 38-4 since the start of 2012 (.905) in contests held in the region.
Harvard has scored points in an Ivy League and school-record 185-consecutive games. The Crimson has not been shut out since a 24-0 loss to Columbia in the 1998 season opener.
Successful Signal Callers
Eleven of the last 13 Harvard QBs have won their first career start. Six of those games have come on the road.
Going For Four
Harvard has won at least a share of the last three Ivy League titles and is seeking to become the first team to capture four consecutive Ancient Eight titles since Penn (1982-86). This marks the first time the Crimson has won three straight crowns.
The other schools to win three straight: Yale (1967-69), Dartmouth (1969-73), Yale (1979-81) and Penn (1982-86).
The loss at Holy Cross Oct. 15 snapped a 16-consecutive road win streak, an Ivy League and program record (breaking the Crimson record set from 1974-77). The streak was the longest in the FCS. Dartmouth owns the next-longest road win streak in the Ivies, rattling off 14 in-a-row from 1995-97.
Harvard Coach Tim Murphy
In his 23rd season as Harvard's all-time winningest head coach, Tim Murphy enters this week's game with a 162-64 record with the Crimson and a 194-109-1 overall head coaching record, which includes five years at Cincinnati and two years at Maine. Since the formation of the Ivy League in 1956, only one Ivy coach has compiled more wins than Murphy's 161 and he is just one of five coaches to win 100-plus games. Murphy also owns 114 Ivy League wins, tied for second most all-time. Murphy has led Harvard to nine Ivy League championships (1997, 2001, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015). He is 18-4 against Columbia.
Columbia Coach Al Bagnoli
Midway through his second season as head coach at Columbia, Al Bagnoli (Central Connecticut State '75) is 4-13 and 2-9 in the Ivy League. Bagnoli, who coached at Penn for 23 years from 1992-2014, is 152-93 as an Ivy League coach, including 114- 60 in Ancient Eight games. Bagnoli won nine Ivy League championships while at Penn (1993, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010 and 2012). He is 14-10 vs. Harvard (with all wins coming at Penn).
Offense Clicking Under Murphy
With its 51-point performance vs. Rhode Island Sept. 16, Harvard improved to 38-1 (.974) under head coach Tim Murphy (since 1994) when scoring 40 or more points. The lone loss was at home against Princeton, 51-48, in triple overtime Oct. 26, 2013.
Since 2000, Harvard is 32-1 (.970) when it does not fumble and 32-0 when not committing a turnover.
Crimson Colored Ivy
Since the formation of the Ivy League in 1956, Harvard has been the winningest team during league play. The Crimson also has a conference-best 267 victories.