After a promising start to the season, football has gone 1-5 in its last six games to drop to sixth place in the Ivy League. With a 2-3 in-conference record, Cornell is likely out of contention for an Ivy title, but the team still has an opportunity to finish strong and build to next year. Its first opportunity to generate a positive outcome comes this Saturday, Nov. 11, when the Red travels to Hanover, New Hampshire, to take on Dartmouth.
Cornell (3-5, 2-3 Ivy) is coming off a road loss to Penn on Saturday, Nov. 4. The Red’s lone score came on its first drive of the second half. Despite holding the ball for nearly 38 minutes and racking up more yards than the Quakers, Cornell was unable to stop the run and ultimately lost by 15.
For the Red, it was the second consecutive double-digit loss to an Ivy opponent, subduing aspirations the team had to contend in the Ivy League following its win over Brown. Despite the disappointments of the past couple weeks, Cornell still has a chance to finish above .500 in conference, which has not happened since 2005.
The Big Green (4-4, 3-2 Ivy) won a close game against Princeton on Friday, Nov. 3. Dartmouth hit a 47-yard field goal with 1:29 left in the game to take a two-point lead and held on for a 23-21 win.
Under first-year head coach Sammy McCorkle, the Big Green sports the fifth-ranked scoring offense and sixth-ranked scoring defense in the conference. The strength of the team comes in its pass rush, as two of its players, defensive lineman Charles Looes and linebacker Braden Mullen, are tied for the Ivy lead with 5.5 sacks each.
Sitting at 3-2 in conference, the Big Green is solidly in contention for a share of the Ivy title. Dartmouth will need to beat the Red and Brown, which are tied in sixth in the conference, and hope that Harvard loses at least one of its remaining games.
When these two teams met last year, it was a competitive 17-13 win for Cornell, highlighted by a 91-yard kickoff return from sophomore wide receiver Davon Kiser. The Red is 42-62-1 all time against Dartmouth but has won two of the last three.
Prediction: Dartmouth 24 Cornell 20
Neither of these teams has been putting up big points this year, with each scoring more than 30 in only one game. Nevertheless, more recently it’s Cornell’s offense which has really been struggling, scoring just 11 points over the past two weeks. Playing on the road in Hanover, it will be a tall task for the Red to avoid its third consecutive loss.
Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. from Memorial Field. The game will also be broadcast on ESPN+.