Thursday, July 8, 2021


TigerBlog learned something new yesterday related to Princeton football.

The information came courtesy of Jordan Becker, the secretary for the Class of 1982 and an alum of the Princeton University band and WPRB, not to mention a lawyer. 

As you might remember, TB yesterday wrote about the football schedule for the 2021 season, which starts 10 weeks from Saturday. If that doesn't get you fired up, what will? 

TB wrote about how Princeton will be playing at Monmouth and how a game in New Jersey not on the Princeton campus has been something of a rarity for the Tigers through the decades. 

Becker emailed him to point out that the 1978 Princeton-Rutgers game was not played on the Rutgers campus but instead was played in Giants Stadium. TB didn't realize that. 

Becker would know - he played with the band that day. By the way, the title of Becker's senior thesis was "The Flawed Lens: Television's Perception of the Vietnam War." That sounds pretty interesting.

Giants Stadium was almost brand-new in 1978 after its opening two years earlier. The first time TB was there was either in 1977 or 1978. He's positive about a few things: 1) the opponent was the Cardinals, who at the time were still in St. Louis, 2) he sat in the second row in one of the end zones, 3) the Giants won and 4) he thought the stadium was amazing.

He remembers a warm, sunny day, except the 1977 and 1978 home games for the Giants against the Cardinals were in December. Oh well. Maybe it was just warm for December. It was definitely sunny.

Rutgers beat Princeton 24-0 in that 1978 game at Giants Stadium. Two years earlier, the Scarlet Knights went 11-0, defeating Princeton 17-0 that year. In between, in 1977, Princeton lost 10-6 to Rutgers. Both of those games were at Palmer Stadium.

So too were the games in 1974 (a 6-6 tie) and 1975 (a 10-7 Princeton win). For that matter, most of the games in the Princeton-Rutgers series were played at Princeton.

Princeton's only touchdown in the 1975 game came after a 16-play third quarter drive that ended with a one-yard run by quarterback Ron Beible, who sadly passed away more than 10 years ago. Princeton didn't score again, but the Tigers dominated possession time in the fourth quarter, keeping Rutgers from any chance at tying or taking the lead.

While the subject for the second straight day is Princeton football, here's a trivia question for you. Who ranks 1-2-3 on Princeton's career list for average yards per rush?

Coming in at No. 3 is Dick Kazmaier at 5.3 yards per carry. Kazmaier, of course, won the 1951 Heisman Trophy. In second place is Keith Elias, a longtime NFL player who averaged 5.7 yards per carry.

Who is No. 1? That would be Tiger senior Collin Eaddy, who has averaged 5.8 yards per carry. 

Eaddy has 1,838 career yards on 315 carries, which actually equals 5.83 yards per carry. Elias, with a program-record 4,208 yards on 736 carries, which is 5.72 per carry.

There is a woman named Shelley Szwast who has taken pictures for Princeton at a bunch of events, especially men's and women's hockey and men's and women's lacrosse. She's also shot some football games, and she sent TB a photo of Eaddy that she'd turned into something resembling a painting. It's pretty good. See for yourself:

 That's pretty good.

Eaddy enters his senior year 11th all-time in rushing yards at Princeton. He needs 57 yards to tie the great Cosmo Iacavazzi for 10th. At his current pace, that's 10 carries for Eaddy.

Eaddy has improved his rushing total each year, going from 376 as a freshman to 663 as a sophomore (when he was an honorable mention All-Ivy League pick) to 799 as a junior (when he was second-team All-Ivy League). If he matches that total of 799 yards this coming year, he'd have 2,637 yards and go from 11th to third all-time at Princeton, trailing only Elias and Judd Garrett.

As with everything else to do with Princeton football, TB is looking forward to seeing Eaddy again this fall. He has quietly put together an outstanding first three years, and he has already put himself in position to be mentioned with names like Elias, Garrett and Iacavazzi.

That is quite impressive stuff.

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