Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Time to add Holy Cross to the football schedule (seriously)

Earlier this week the Patriot League announced that they would start providing football scholarships in 2013. This is good news for BC as now we can renew our football rivalry with Holy Cross. It may not excite most younger BC fans, but adding the Crusaders back to the schedule makes a lot of sense.

All FBS teams will play a FCS game annually. As much as we hate it, the game are not going away. In fact, I think the nine game conference slates will have some teams searching for wins by scheduling two FCS games annually. In the past BC scheduled their FCS opponents and justified it as a game good for New England. But with Northeastern dropping football, URI downgrading and UMass upgrading, BC is left with only Maine and UNH as potential New England opponents. (Games against non-scholarship Harvard and Holy Cross could not count towards BC's bowl eligible wins.) Now that Holy Cross has scholarships, those games can count.

Although it would still be a cupcake game on the schedule we can frame it as tradition. The two schools have played 82 times and for years it was a huge game in Massachusetts. Playing again would still excite some of our older alums. I also think it would energize Holy Cross to the point where they would probably be willing to play us every year. I also don't think Holy Cross would demand an exorbitant pay day. It's a bus trip and they could sell their ticket allotments. When BC brings in the Weber States of the college football world, we pay a premium. Holy Cross wants to be associated with BC. Playing us annually helps their branding. Plus it is win-win. If we crush them, there is no embarrassment. If they give us a game or win, they have huge bragging rights.

The ACC expansion allows for only three non-conference opponents. BC fans want us to play Alabama, Michigan and USC every year. The reality though is BC needs to play schedules comparable to our peers. Yet at the same time generate interest. Getting Holy Cross back on the schedule is the just one step towards that.


lbkjj said...

As an " old Alum", I would love to see that series resurrected. Holy Cross was our Notre Dame game for many years.

mod34b said...

Playing Holy Cross again has a nice nostaligic feel to it, but that is about it. Students and other fans will yawn after saying: 'Where is Holy Cross located and why is BC playing them?' !

Maybe if HC gets better in 10 years, BC could play them again. Then again, how interesting has it been playing Maine? Not very.

Jeff said...

I'm all for this. Many BC parents have kids at both schools. They're close, they're Catholic, and now they have scholarship athletes. Everything makes sense.

mod34b - really? I would imagine a lot of BC students also considered Holy Cross in their college search. I know I did.

Ben Hinchey said...

i can't help myself:

oh holy cross, oh holy cross
thy sons are made of applesauce
they eat it morning, day and night
they even eat it when they fight
oh holy cross, on bended knee
will kiss the ass of ol' BC!

Big Jack Krack said...

I think it will be great to renew the rivalry. We should wait until they get up to their full complement of scholarships.

Much rather play Holy Cross than the other schools in New England - Maine, UNH, URI, etc.

I'm sure UMASS will find its way onto our schedule - maybe anyway.

For you younger fans, it was always fun to see (BC) Jesuits with drink in hand singing -
Oh Holy Cross on bended knee, kiss the ass of old BC! :-)

There have been some very exciting games between these two schools.

downtown_resident said...

To me, this is a no-brainer. Sign 'em up! I graduated several years after the BC-HC series ended but have a couple friends who went to HC. Believe me, the animosity of the rivalry is still there from the Crusader side. This matchup is far and away more interesting than any of the Northeastern/Maine/Weber slop we've been force-fed of late at Alumni.

Lenny Sienko said...

Bring back the Cross! and obliterate them!!

You have to have been there to understand some of the basis of the rivalry.

Of course, there is the legend of the Coconut Grove Fire, when BC was saved by its loss; but for grads form the 60's, the animus was much closer to home. Specifically, my hatred of those applesauce eating so&so's stems from their practice of bussing great numbers of Crossers to crash the Newton College of the Scared Heart mixers. We BC folk would be happily ensconced at the Quonset Hut on the Newton Campus, enjoying the attentions of multiple young women, with a very favorable ratio, when a huge bus of the blackguards form Worcester would pull up and disgorge mass quantities of crew cut young Catholics in tweed sport jackets.

I'd better quit...I'm starting to sound like BC 1974....Bring back the Cross and kill'm...with kindness.

mod10aeagle said...

I've always thought that proof that we'd hit rock bottom would be seeing Holy Cross back on the football schedule.

Big Jack Krack said...

Mod10eagle - As opposed to Stony Brook University from Long Island? Even if they are the champs of the Big South Conference?

We have nothing to gain by playing them - NOTHING.

I do admit that I would never want to play HC in that stadium next to the highway - it's the pits.

Ben - I remember the words this way: (O Tannenbaum or O Christmas Tree melody)

Oh Holy Cross, Oh Holy Cross,
all they eat is applesauce;
They eat it morning, noon and night,
they even eat it when they're tight!
Oh Holy Cross on bended knee,
Kiss the ass of old BC.

sjudad said...

As a member of the Class of '74, parent of BC ('05) and HC ('02) grads, I say bring back the Cross. Was there at Fitton Field for Doug Flutie's last game, and then back in Worcester a couple of years later for the last BC/HC game. If I remember correctly, we fell behind 21-0 in a mudbowl that last game, then came back to bury them something like 56-21. Nothing like a beatdown of the Cross. As many have said before me, much better than seeing URI/Maine/Weber St.

dixieagle said...

BJK, that's the way we sang it back in the early '70s, too. Haven't thought of it for years.

I'm all for reviving the "rivalry"; much more interesting for the local Catholic contingent than some of the "pushover" teams we've been playing. (Though lately, pushovers have been few and far between...)

Ben Hinchey said...

ha ha - it's been stuck in my head all day now.

that version has been passed down three generations now, all the way back to '35, so i'm not surprised there have been some losses in translation along the way! of course, it also used to be "for here, men are men," but i'll leave that one alone...

Scott said...

This game will never happen unil the patriot league moves up to over 56 scholarships. The exception that allows one 1-aa game to count towards the 6 win bowl requirement only applies to fully funded 1-aa programs that use 90% of the 63 scholarships allowed under the 1-aa catogory.

Here is the quote from by-law

Bowl eligibility in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) College Football is the standard through which teams become available for selection to participate in postseason bowl games. When a team achieves this state, it is described as "bowl-eligible". Under current regulations, in order for this to occur, a team must have a winning record, which may include one win against a Division I FCS scholarship-awarding[1] opponent, or win their conference, and the team must not be on probation. The NCAA allows one victory per season over a Division I FCS (formerly I-AA) team to count toward an FBS team's bowl eligibility, so long as the FCS team has supplied financial aid for football averaging out to at least 56.7 full scholarships (90% of the limit of 63 allowed to FCS schools) over "a rolling two-year period" that can include the current season.[2]

JBQ said...

1942,HC upset BC and the BC team was saved because they cancelled a big party at the Coconut Grove which burned down. That was quite a story in its day. Now, BC football is burning down!

Anne said...

My memory to the HC song....

Oh Holy Cross, Oh Holy Cross
All you eat is applesauce
You eat it morning, noon and night
You even eat it when you're tight
Oh Holy Cross on bended knees
Kiss the Ass of All BC

SOM '76