Sports | Football

0-10: Football falls to Brown to go winless for 6th time in program history

  • Peter Andrews for Spectator
    Banner Year | The Light Blue's nightmarish season has led to a lot of frustration with both head coach Pete Mangurian and athletic director M. Dianne Murphy.

Updated 11/25 at 1:35 a.m.

Frustration was literally in the air at Robert K. Kraft Field Saturday afternoon.

For part of the second quarter, a plane circled above the field, trailing a banner calling for the departure of Athletic Director M. Dianne Murphy and head coach Pete Mangurian. It read, "THX SENIORS GO LIONS LUV U!! MANG & MURPHY...JUST GO." Columbia (0-10, 0-7 Ivy) trailed for the duration of the game and fell to Brown (6-4, 3-4 Ivy) 48-7 to finish the season winless for the first time since 1987.

[In the Zone: Highlights, analysis of Columbia's 48-7 loss to conclude its 0-10 season]

“Obviously not the way we wanted to end the season. As I told the team inside, I really have two sets of feelings right now,” Mangurian said after the game. “One for the seniors, and how hard they’ve worked and what they’ve put out there, and one for the rest of the guys that have to make a decision on whether this defines them or it doesn’t.”

Senior linebacker Brian East echoed his coach’s disappointment.

“There’s no other way to put it—tough,” he said of the seniors’ experience in the 2013 season. 

But East, who had a forced fumble and 18 tackles on the afternoon—including two for a loss—did not say that he felt the entire season was a waste.

“The record shows what it is, but at the end of the day, I cherished this year,” East said, expressing his confidence in the program’s future. “If I had two more years with Coach Mangurian, that’d be very, very special. And those underclassmen are very lucky because we all know that no matter what was shown on the field, this program is truly going in the right direction.”

Many people outside the program do not share East’s outlook, with harsh criticism coming from throughout the extended Columbia community. But regardless of the ongoing punditry surrounding the team’s future, it was Brown that stole the show on Columbia’s Senior Day.

Led by running back John Spooney, the Ivy League’s top rusher, the Bear offense turned in a dominant performance. Spooney had 186 yards rushing to front Brown’s attack, while quarterback Patrick Donnelly turned in a great performance under center, finishing with 305 yards and four touchdowns on 22-of-37 passing. Columbia did not fare nearly as well. Hampered by a very weak passing game, as it has been all season, the Lion offense was unable to find any kind of rhythm between a barrage of dropped passes and poor quarterback play.

Kiera Wood/ Senior Staff Photographer
dropping the ball | Despite senior tight end Hamilton Garner's best efforts, Columbia's offense was inept once again against Brown.

“The inconsistency, I mean it’s been a problem for us,” sophomore signal-caller Trevor McDonagh said. “We’ve been working on it, working on the drops and missed throws, and just got to keep working on it. We’re going to be working on it all offseason.”

McDonagh would finish the afternoon with 149 yards, a touchdown, and three interceptions on 16-of-50 passing.

With Columbia’s offense sputtering, Brown wasted little time taking control of the game.

The Bears’ first score came on a 45-yard run by Spooney with 8:13 to play in the first quarter, and Brown added to its tally on its next possession when Donnelly found wide receiver Jordan Evans for a 13-yard touchdown strike.

The Lions, on the other hand, struggled mightily in the early going. The Light Blue had a net of 14 yards on 19 plays in the first quarter and was kept off the scoreboard in the first half. 

Ahead 14-0 after the first quarter, Brown tacked on a field goal and another touchdown in the second to go up 24-0 going into the intermission.

Not much changed in the second half.

The Bears extended their lead to 31-0 with a two-play, 75-yard touchdown drive on the first offensive series of the third quarter. A 35-yard run by Spooney set up a 40-yard pass from Donnelly to wide receiver Telleff Lundevall.

Columbia’s offense finally broke through on its next possession, as McDonagh found first-year wide receiver Toure Douglas for a 12-yard touchdown pass that made it 31-7.

But the score proved to be little more than a drop in the bucket.

Brown responded with a field goal and tacked on a touchdown in the third, followed by another in the fourth to make it 48-7.

Neither team would score again, as Columbia’s dismal season came to a fitting end.

eli.schultz@columbiaspectator.com | @elischultz28

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Sky Marshall posted on

The allegory here is whether the powers can take their collective heads out of the sand and look to the sky for direction.
This was a collaborative effort by concerned alums to highlight failure (and not on the part of our athletes) and also express appreciation to those same athletes for the genuine efforts spent in what has must been a frustrating season for them.
Best wishes and luck for all our other Lion teams as well, as you each strive going forward. May you hopefully get at least half the support you all deserve from your Athletic Department and higher administration.

An old and loyal Lion

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deja vu alun posted on

I was at columbia for 3 straight 0-10 seasons in the 1980s. it didn't feel good then and now at one of the top 5 universities in the country this is an embarrassment. In the last 6 games we were outscored 236-35, which included games against penn, brown and cornell which were the three teams just ahead of us in the standings. the talent at Columbia is not that drastically off from the other teams. the scores tell me that the team does not respond to Mangurian. there is something going on behind the scenes that we don't know for a season to be this much of a disaster. Mangurian should be fired immediately.

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UnionLeague posted on

And the icing on the cake of a season was the response Bollinger offered up to the College in his letter to the Spectator. His platitudinous and disdainful brushoff was unworthy of all the Columbians who have worked so hard to excel in all fields.

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Anonymous posted on

And by the College, you mean the entire undergraduate community - CC, SEAS, and GS - right?

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UnionLeague posted on

Yes.

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Mighty Duck posted on

This remind me a dialogue from the first movie "Mighty Ducks". It went something like this:

Don't you hate losing?

At first you do, but then you get used to it.
______

At least the ordeal is over... until next season, when I hope something gets done.

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sageman posted on

Drop football! This is sickening! Ban Bill Campbell from any decision making.
Don't even field a team next year-this is disgraceful. It is worse than a pop warner team. Bill Campbell is a joke. He chose this disaster of a coach. His money is poison.

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Anonymous posted on

It is now a no brainier that Mangurian and Murphy need to be fired.

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Anonymous posted on

I'm embarrassed that this is how our school spends its money. Really? A "love you" plane? That money could be used to 1) IMPROVE DODGE 2) add to the PE courses 3) idk maybe go to Academics or something???

What a ridiculous waste of money.

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Uptown posted on

I don't think the school paid for the plane

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Anonymous posted on

But that would be quite the subplot.

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Anonymous posted on

I guess you didn't read Sky Marshall's ownership at the beginning here? Or that you didn't realize the banner called for 2 firings? Or that maybe you're clueless?

No harm. It was comic relief.

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columbia doge posted on

yes improve doge
many money
such exercises
more swim requirement
much treadmills

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sageman posted on

Rome is burning!
The Titanic is sinking!
Columbia football is on its way to oblivion.
And the three stooges(Campbell, Bollinger and Murphy) are silent! Unless of course, you count that condescending letter Bollinger wrote in The Spectator.
These three idiots are complicit in the extinction of the football program. Their silence is "deafening".
They will all be judged on this debacle. Their legacy is in the toilet.
Please, Campbell it is time for you to go off into the sunset. Bollinger, you may have a future as the spokesman for the new mayor. And Murphy, you can get work as a greeter at Bellagio and smile all day and night.
The three of you have taken incompetence to a new level.

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Anonymous posted on

If they don't admit and confess their sins, the curse stays.

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Anonymous posted on

Perfect record so many times. Wow! I wonder if these football players count that high. We can't tell, because they can't keep track of the number of assaults and racist remarks they have done. (But then they take cue from Bolly. Implicitly, he tells them that he doesn't care.)

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Anonymous posted on

Cut the political/idealogical agenda.
An unfortunate incident with lots of questions all around, else there would have been major implications, given our PC Prez, and the NYC AG.
Also including a very, very few individuals.
So don't judge en masse. You put yourself in ugly, infamous company when you do.

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Anonymous posted on

You're a jackass--easy to make those kinds of comments anonymously.

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Anonymous posted on

You're a jackass--easy to make those comments anonymously.

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deja vu alun posted on

so i read Bollinger's letter where he touts a title in men's doubles tennis, a 3-0 start in women's swimming and a fencing title as proof of athletic success. I do respect those athletes for their hard work and dedication. but let's face it, football and basketball are the ones where an athletic brand to go along with an academic one is built. in the 1980s when you mentioned Columbia, people asked weren't we the ones with the longest losing streak, not hey didn't you win the archery title. if football players can be recruited to providence and hanover, there is no reason we can't have a competitive program here. ask Ray Tellier.

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deja vu alum posted on

by the way, kyle smith fields a competitive program. I have watched his teams play several games and, while he may not have depth of talent, the kids play hard for him. they seem to respect the coach. I have no base of knowledge but the scores suggest to me that the football teams does not feel the same about Mangurian.

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Another Alum '13 posted on

So true about coach Smith. They play really hard for him, and the games are, ostensibly, always competitive.

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vinoron posted on

I am a basketball fan & have been since 1942 when my father took me to my first game. Come watch the basketball team. They won two out of three out west and have no seniors. Coach Smith & his staff have recruited many excellent young players, They are fun to watch.
Be positive & support the team. Tuesday against American.

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Rich Forzani posted on

So by now, is it appropriate to ask "Why does the emperor have no clothes?"

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columbia doge posted on

yes
omg many fairytale
such idiom
many snoot

much hans much christian much anderson

very danish folktale wow

much trite yes much pointless yes

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Peter Stevens '70C '73 L posted on

Saturday marked a new low in my 47 years supporting CU football.A sparse spiritless crowd battered by cold and wind and loss of hope. A talentless team going they the motions. A head coach doing his best impression of Captain Ahab, patrolling the sidelines alone- cut off from his players, presumably listening to the fools he installed as the O and D coordinators. A senior day in which the parents on the field outnumbered the Lions faithful in the stands. Another cruel rout.

And against this backdrop, a university president who has publicly cast our football future with an AD with no football experience and a proven record of failure and a coach who has taken the program to a level never seen before.

As painful as it will be, wholesale changes, i.e., new AD and Head Coach, must be made immediately. We owe it to the returning players and their families, future players and the whole CU community.

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Anonymous posted on

This is too poetic. Nothing about a bunch of racist assaulters is poetic. The new low was reached when this bunch exhibited their violent racist behavior, not when they got their butts kicked on the football field (time after time).

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UnionLeague posted on

Bolly and Murphy have proven themselves incapable of leading the Football Organization. A new Management and Advisory structure needs to be put in place. My idea is to create an Athletic Board (similar to a Corporate Board) responsible for the oversight of the Football Program. The Board would include all the Coaches of the prominent Columbia Athletics Programs including Baseball, Fencing, Golf, Swimming, Tennis and Track. In addition the Board would include prominent Columbians who have excelled in the world of Sports. It would be my wish that this Board would form a powerful and effective brain trust and lead the way for a winning and even fun Football Program. As a concerned Alumnus I find reading the Football summaries in the Spectator, akin to a dirge and merciless funeral chant. I am so proud of my Columbia connection and all that the University has achieved in the last thirty years, but the failings of the Football program, particularly in the last two years, have undercut the morale of the Undergraduate Student Body and its Alumni. Fun and joy may not always be at the top of the University Administrators' to-do-list, but I do believe the pleasure one derives, in all its aspects, from the Undergraduate experience is an important building block of Alumni-College relations and student morale in general. So those parties who are distinctly uninterested or demonstrably incapable, should step aside for the good of the Undergraduates and let both the true and best "Amateurs" and "Professionals" guide our Football Program. I suggest we call the new leadership Council the "Columbia College Football Board of Advisers". (CCF-BA)

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Anonymous posted on

Sounds like the ultimate "cluster f_ck". That crowd wouldn't be able to order lunch. Let's look to the real world for real solutions, shall we?

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CML posted on

i was around in '06-'09 and can confirm m dianne is a giant cunt

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Sprinkles posted on

Who cares about the football program? This is Columbia.

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HCE posted on

help

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Anonymous posted on

You can say Columbia never led, but they didn't "trail for the duration of the game," unless the game started with a score other than 0-0.

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Francis (Frank) J. Partel, Jr. posted on

The following is an edited version of a letter that I sent to the President of the University three years ago. Dr. Murphy responded for President Bollinger. She did not refute the basic argument, but, I'm paraphrasing, essentially argued that many others disagreed with the line of argument that was presented.

November 22, 2011

Lee C. Bollinger
President of Columbia University
202 Low Library
535 West 116th Street, Mail Code 4309
New York, NY 10027

Subj: Rethinking Athletics at Columbia

Dear President Bollinger:

I suppose this letter will be in vain in view of Billy Campbell’s status as trustee and Bob Kraft’s status as former trustee and owner of the New England Patriots. I knew Billy as an undergraduate, and Bob and I are classmates and friends. Nevertheless, the performance of this year’s football team aside, the growing knowledge about aging and the consequences of head injuries and arthritis strongly suggest that a review of Columbia’s athletic program is long overdue.

Everything that we know about head injuries, everything that we know about arthritis, and everything that we know about geriatric wellness, clearly indicates that football is anachronistic, and the risks associated with football are foolishly high, and the sport for players and spectators is at best a guilty pleasure.

However, my perspective is far broader than football and suggests that emphasis and funding should be more properly redirected to lifetime sports. But let me deal with football first.

Football is a quite different matter. It is a game of individual, specialized skills and teamwork. Accordingly it is a costly, coaching-intensive sport. It requires extensive facilities and equipment. The casualty rate of injuries is high and curtails the playing careers of a significant percentage of participants. It is a game of contact, velocity and mass (force), as well as skill, strategy and tactics. A team must meet certain threshold levels of all of the above, below which it can be dangerous for it to take the field against a superior opponent. And we have had such teams at Columbia which were seriously overmatched.

Frankly, I love football, and I am an avid New York Giants fan, but even the NFL and team executives know that the biggest threat to their product and enterprise is the increasing frequency and severity of injuries. I may love to drive fast, but if I value my life and those of others, I can not responsibly do it. That is where we are with football. It is nothing less than a moral and ethical issue at Columbia just as boxing was decades ago.

Next I will discuss several discrete but related issues.

Even in the Ivy League representative sports have gotten way out of balance. Where once there were three and four lettermen, varsity athletes typically focus on one sport for three, and in some cases, four seasons. Where athletics were once considered a broadening experience, they are presently a narrowing experience. Where once athletes played a sport for a season, in the off-season they were free to pursue non-athletic avocations which were complementary and supportive of the overall purposes of the College’s whole-man tradition and a liberal education. The intensity of Ivy athletics today thwart this, and coaches are no longer faculty members who are aligned with the broader purposes of the University, but are contract hires who must win to advance in their careers and possess powerful, divergent motives (e.g., the purported posturing and advice of a football coach to a Rhodes candidate at Yale).

Athletics at Columbia and in the Ivy League are blatantly parochial and anachronistic in a globalizing world where life expectancies are expanding. If we think it is affordable to send a football team to California, as we have in the past, why not a soccer team to Berlin, a chess team to Moscow, a fencing team to Budapest, or a women’s volley ball team to Rome. If lifetime activity is conducive to good health as we age, why not emphasize lifetime sports for the whole community—golf, the racquet sports, hiking, cycling, water sports such as kayaking and sailing, to identify just a few. Need I say again that when a right tackle makes his last block in the senior year of a game in November, his football skills are immediately made obsolete while he may carry football injuries forward over a lifetime.

Revising and redirecting programs and policies which are deeply engrained in tradition and culture does not happen easily nor without substantial risk. Nevertheless, as more and more medical evidence is accumulated about unreasonable athletic hazards and lifestyle risks to longevity, the greater the foolishness and inexcusability in maintaining the status quo. It seems desirable to have the Ivy presidents commission a body to review the nature. and role, the degree and kind of athletics and physical recreation appropriate for a modern university. It is even more incumbent upon Columbia which professes to have an open mind and critical analytical skills, and to prepare its students for the contemporary world with a liberal education, to do it. If it proves difficult to act collectively, Columbia should undertake its own study and manifest the courage to act on its findings, and if necessary, to act alone.

Very cordially,

s/Francis J Partel, Jr.

Columbia College, A.B., 1963; Columbia Business School, MBA, 1969
Freshman numerals and varsity letter in lightweight crew.

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