Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Hoyas To Rekindle Rivalry with Fordham

Coming off a thrilling one-point overtime victory over Butler in last week’s homecoming shootout, Georgetown looks to improve its winning streak to three when they face Fordham on Saturday.

Fordham will be the second team from the Patriot League that Georgetown has faced this season. The first was Holy Cross, which defeated Georgetown, 38-22, in the Hoyas’ season opener. Head Coach Bob Benson feels that Fordham could be the strongest opponent that Georgetown will face thus far.

“I feel they are a better team than Holy Cross,” Benson said. “They’re going to be a very tough opponent.”

Fairfield, a team that has been a point of comparative reference this season, Georgetown narrowly defeated, 21-14, last season. Fordham crushed Fairfield, 34-7, earlier this season.

Last year was a bit deceiving for the Rams, who finished the season with a record of 0-11, 0-6 in the Patriot League. The Ramssported a relatively young team last year, including 15 freshmen on their two-deep roster.

This year Fordham broke its winless streak with a 34-7 victory over Fairfield on Sept. 9, but have struggled aside from that, losing its other three games to Towson, Columbia and Colgate.

The Hoyas’ defense, which gave up 165 yards rushing last week, will have to contend with another solid ground game, led by Arthur Gaskin. Gaskin is averaging 89 yards a game for the Rams, with a total of 369 yards and three touchdowns in four games. Fordham’s passing game pales in comparison to Butler’s air attack, now ranked fifth in the nation in Division I-AA. Fordham, on the other hand, has only thrown for one touchdown all season while tossing 12 interceptions.

Also unlike last week, Georgetown will most likely have a harder time offensively against a much stronger Fordham defense.

“They have a very strong defensive line,” Benson said.

That defensive line could prove a challenge to the relatively young Hoya offensive line. If the offensive line can’t hold off the Rams charges, the pressure they put on sophomore quarterback, and last week’s hero, Dave Paulus could negate the deep threat to star senior wide receiver Gharun Hester.

“We need to establish a balanced attack on offense,” Benson said. “We’ll rotate our three backs [sophomore Jamarr Staples, freshman Dawon Dicks and senior Alex Fonti]. We want to be wide open.”

On the plus side for the Hoyas, the Rams have had trouble scoring late in the game, totaling only 17 points in the second half all season. Georgetown, on the other hand, is coming off a gritty win which saw the Hoyas refuse to end the game in any way other than a victory for the Blue and Gray.

Benson is proud of his team’s persistence. “We’ve shown some great character. Not many teams could do what we did [rallying for a tying score on the final drive of the fourth quarter].”

Despite his feelings that Fordham will be a more than worthy opponent, Benson looks forward to the contest.

“We’re going to have to take it to the next level,” Benson said. “It’s another step in the direction of the future and it will show us where we are as a program. And it’s a necessary step.”

Benson also believes that the football program stands on the threshold of an exciting new era which could see Georgetown return to its glory days.

“We can establish a wonderful tradition, but we need to get some fans out in those bleachers. It’s not that far up the hill,” Benson joked.

The Hoyas will square off against the Rams Saturday at 1 p.m. on Kehoe Field.

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