Ivy co-champs Penn, Princeton set for spring games
(STATS) - It's no surprise that when Penn or Princeton football zigs, the other zags.
After sharing the Ivy League title last year, the rivals will play their annual spring games just a day apart this weekend. Princeton will hold its game on Saturday, with a championship ring ceremony afterward, and Penn will be in action Sunday, with some additional team lifting to continue into next week.
Both teams figure to be in the title mix again this season with perennial power Harvard, which finished third last fall.
Princeton was 8-2 overall and 6-1 in the league, including a 28-0 home win over Penn. Coach Bob Surace's squad returns 10 starters, including some of the best players in the league in all-purpose threat John Lovett, the 2016 Ivy offensive player of the year; defensive lineman Kurt Holuba, the runner-up for defensive player of the year; and quarterback Chad Kanoff. The Tigers will need new key contributors at wide receiver and linebacker and in the secondary.
Penn, which finished 7-3 and 6-1, has won a share of the last two Ivy championship under third-year coach Ray Priore. His team returns 14 starters, including 11 who earned all-league honors, and none bigger than wide receiver Justin Watson, a two-time runner-up for the league's offensive player of the year award. The biggest loss is three-year starting quarterback Alek Torgersen.
Princeton will visit Penn in the fifth week of the Ivy schedule on Nov. 4. Beginning in 2018, the teams will start to play each other annually on the final Saturday of the league schedule.