HERO Sports welcomes you to "Two-a-Days", where we will preview every single one of the 125 FCS programs, with two being released each day from June 18 to August 18 (with the final day having three in one day). Today we give you … Colgate.
Colgate (7-4 IN 2017)
Patriot League (Colgate was T-1st in 2017)
COACH: Dan Hunt – 5th year (26-21)
2017 OFFENSE: 27.7 ppg (46th in FCS)
2017 DEFENSE: 17.5 ppg (12th in FCS)
SUM IT UP: The Dan Hunt era of football has been a pretty good one for Colgate so far, and there's not much reason to think that will change in 2018. Colgate should be considered the far-and-away favorite to earn another Patriot League championship this fall for any number of reasons. The Raiders have the best collection of talent in the conference; they return significantly more pieces than any other conference opponent; they do an excellent job recruiting talent that fits their schemes. This 2018 team in particular feels like it could emulate the success of Hunt's second year, which saw the Raiders reach the FCS quarterfinals after winning at New Hampshire and James Madison. A strong, balanced offense and a slew of defensive playmakers make Colgate a team you should keep your eye on as the calendars turn to November.
BEST-CASE SCENARIO: Colgate earns a playoff berth and plays into December. The Raiders probably feel like they missed an opportunity after Lehigh won the league's AQ bid last season before promptly getting blown out by Stony Brook in the first round. Colgate could realistically run the table in the Patriot League in 2018, lock down a playoff spot and win one or two postseason games. The Raiders will have a talent gap if matched up against most of the top 10, but they're definitely good enough to make the Final 16, or even the Final 8.
TOP RETURNEE: DL Nick Wheeler (AP All-American, First-Team All-Patriot — Led conference with 11.5 sacks).
THE NEXT FIVE: OL Jovaun Woolford (First-Team All-Patriot, started 11 games at RT); DB Abu Daramy-Swaray (First-Team All-Patriot, 51 Tackles, 2 INTs); LB Nick Ioanilli (Led team in Tackles and INTs); QB Grant Breneman (Patriot League Rookie of the Year); RB James Holland (First-Team All-Patriot).
TOP NEWCOMER: TE Mike Bevino (Deerfield Academy)
DID YOU KNOW?: Most of the electricity that powers Colgate University comes from a hydroelectric dam at Niagara Falls.
THE QUOTE: "At the quarterback position, Grant just exudes confidence without being cocky. He looks in control. Our defense will challenge you – they give you a lot of different looks to try to confuse you; they pressure you and they come at you from everywhere. But Grant did a really nice job of handling that and he just grew within that offense to where he's much more confident at the line of scrimmage in changing plays… he really knows in the run and the pass game that he can change and get to a play that's going to hurt the defense." — Head Coach Dan Hunt, on rising sophomore QB Grant Breneman during spring ball.
SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT
THE HASHTAG: #GoGate
FOOTBALL TWITTER: @ColgateFB
— Colgate Football (@ColgateFB) June 21, 2018
MEET THE NEW NEIGHBORS: How Idaho's Transition back to FCS Affects the Big Sky