Pressure may be slightly larger than normal for the Cornell football team as it prepares for its home opener and 2012 Homecoming game against Yale on Saturday, Sept. 22 at 1 p.m. The Red will not only welcome the Bulldogs to Schoellkopf Field, but also camera crews from NBC Sports Network, as the Ivy contest will be nationally televised as part of a doubleheader. Cornell and Yale will be the day’s first game, with Harvard visiting Brown at 4:30 p.m. Cornell and Yale kick off the first of seven Ivy League games that the network plans to air, with an eighth game being televised by CBS Sports Network.
The series between the Red and the Bulldogs has largely been in Yale’s favor in recent years, with the New Haven squad claiming eight of the pair’s last 11 meetings and leading the all-time series, 44-28-2. Last year, Yale picked up a 31-17 win, despite 271 yards passing and a touchdown by rising junior quarterback and 2011 Ivy League Player of the Year Jeff Mathews. Other recent highlights between the two programs have included Cornell upsetting the preseason Ivy League favorites, 17-14, at Schoellkopf Field in 2008 and edging out the Bulldogs, 14-12, at the Yale Bowl in 2009.
The Red will return 45 letter winners and 19 starters (9 offense, 8 defense, 2 special teams) from last year’s squad, which finished 5-5 for the year. Cornell opens the 2012 season on Saturday, Sept. 15 at Fordham.