March 20, 2009
WASHINGTON, D.C. -
The Georgetown University football team opened spring drills this week for the first of what will be approximately 15 practice dates during the next month.
The practices will culminate with the team's Spring Game, to be held on Saturday, April 18 at 4 p.m. The Gridiron Club Awards Luncheon will be held at noon at Leo J. O'Donovan Hall, with special guest speaker General George William Casey (F'70), Chief of Staff of the United States Army and a former Hoya football player.
Georgetown, under the direction of Head Coach Kevin Kelly, returns several key contributors on both sides of the ball, including eight starters on offense and nine on defense.
On the offensive side, sophomore Keerome Lawrence (New Haven, Conn./James Hillhouse), the starter at quarterback for most of last season, threw for 481 yards and three scores, while carrying 119 times for 392 yards and three touchdowns. He will be joined in the backfield by quarterback James Brady (Melville, N.Y./St. Anthony's), who threw for 690 yards in seven games and threw three touchdowns in his first season on the Hilltop. Those two will vie for time along with freshmen Scott Darby (Tewskbury, Mass./St. John's Prep) and Tucker Stafford (Riverside, Conn./Greenwich).
Other key players returning include running back Charlie Houghton (Toronto, Ontario, Canada/Phillips Academy [Mass.]), the 2007 Patriot League Rookie of the Year, and slot back Philip Oladeji (Plano, Texas/Plano East), who had 29 carries for 174 yards last season. Senior Rick Cosgrove (Chalfont, Pa./LaSalle College H.S.) and Robert Lane (Greensboro, N.C./Grimsley), who missed most of last season after breaking his jaw in the third game, also return.
The Hoya offense should be bolstered by the return of nearly every starting offensive lineman, led by captain Dan Matheny (Fairfax, Va./Paul VI). Other offensive line returnees include Rob Bates (Malvern, Pa./Malvern Prep), Kelvin Moses (Nashua, N.H./Lawrence Academy) and George Mosle (Olney, Md./Sherwood).
On the defensive side, the Hoyas return nearly every starter, led by Second Team All-Patriot League defensive back Travis Mack (West Chester, Pa./The Hill School). Mack finished second on the team with 69 tackles last year and leads a defense that lost only two starters to graduation.
Starting linebackers Nick Parrish (Irving, Texas/Jesuit College Prep), who led the team with 73 tackles and had two interceptions, and Patrick O'Donnell (Media, Pa./Penncrest) both return, while the Hoyas will also welcome back starters Sean McNally (Philadelphia, Pa./William Penn Charter), Chris Rau (Avon Lake, Ohio/Avon Lake), Dennis Jackson (Miramar, Fla./Northwestern) and Jayah Kaisamba (Fort Worth, Texas/LD Bell).
Despite losing a pair of seniors on the defensive line - Second-Team All-Patriot League selection Ataefiok Etukeren and Anthony DiTommaso - the Hoyas return starters George Cullen (Janesville, Wis./Janesville Craig) and Chudi Obianwu (Southampton, N.J./Bishop Eustace). The team is also expected to welcome back Dan Lenihan (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood), a projected starter last year who missed the season with an injury.
The Hoyas are preparing for a challenging 2009 schedule that begins on the road against Patriot League rival Holy Cross on Sept. 5. The team plays its home opener on Saturday, Sept. 12 against Lafayette, a 6 p.m. kickoff that is the first night game to be played at the Multi-Sport Field. Other home games this year include Yale (Sept. 19) and the Second Annual D.C. Cup against Howard (Sept. 26), Colgate (Oct. 17), defending Football Championship Subdivision National Champion Richmond (Nov. 14) and Fordham (Nov. 21). Road games include trips to Bucknell (Oct. 3), Lehigh (Oct. 10), Old Dominion (Oct. 31) and Marist (Nov. 7).