Dartmouth takes on Valparaiso in FCS action on Saturday, September 17.
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The game (1:30 p.m. ET start time) won’t be on TV, but anyone in the US can watch Valparaiso vs Dartmouth live on ESPN+ right here:
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Valparaiso vs Dartmouth Preview
The Dartmouth Big Green open their season against the Valparaiso Beacons (1-1) on Saturday.
Valparaiso fell short of Dartmouth at home last year 28-18 when the Big Green scored a fourth-quarter touchdown to secure the win. The Beacons went 4-7 overall last year, which began with an 0-3 start. The Mean Green went 9-1 last year and finished as co-champions of the Ivy League.
This year’s Valparaiso squad opened with a 20-17 win over NAIA squad Indiana Wesleyan on September 3. Brian Bartholomew won it for the Beacons on a 50-yard field with 1:36 left in the game.
Valparaiso fell short in the second week of the season at Illinois State, 28-21, on September 10. The Beacons trailed 28-14 in the fourth quarter, but quarterback Mason Kaplan gave his team a shot at the comeback late. Kaplan threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Evan Jernegan with 2:50 left in the game.
“The message [to the players] was I was pissed. We missed out on an opportunity to win a football game,” Beacons head coach Landon Fox said via The Pantagraph’s Randy Reinhardt. “Obviously, they’re a good team. But when you’re not executing on offense, defense and special teams at certain times, that’s what is frustrating. When you have an opportunity to beat a good team and you don’t, that hurts.”
Dartmouth enters the season with high expectations, going for a third-consecutive Ivy League title. The Big Green returns plenty of talent to make another run for the title.
“It’s tough to win a championship, it’s harder to repeat a championship,” Dartmouth head coach Buddy Teevens said via The Dartmouth’s Will Ennis. “As I tell our players, the only poll that matters is the one at the end of the year … I also tell them it’s not the best team on Saturday that wins. It’s the team that plays best on Saturday that wins. We learned that from [Cornell University] and [Columbia University] the past two years, so we gotta come out and play.”
“Senior leadership will be very, very important. Guys that maybe have not been asked to lead so much in the past, it’s their time,” Teevens added.