When Georgetown goes on the road this week to face Patriot League rival Fordham, it will be only the latest saga in the 114-year-old rivalry.

The first kickoff between the teams was in 1890, and the rivalry has only intensified since the Hoyas (2-5, 0-3 Patriot) joined the Rams in the Patriot League.

Fordham has won nine straight matchups against the Hoyas in the current era, and the Jesuit traditions of both schools add to the significance of the game.

Leading Fordham (4-3, 1-1 Patriot) is sophomore quarterback Derric Daniels, who excels at putting the ball in the air.

Last week in the Rams’ 35-20 loss to Lafayette, Daniels passed for 282 yards. With the help of senior wideouts Steve Porco and Rashawn Haynes, Daniels has passed for over 1,000 yards this season. The two wide receivers combined for nine receptions and 111 yards last week against Lafayette.

The rushing of sophomore running back Jamaal Hunte, who has put up 572 total yards this season, complements Fordham’s passing game.

Senior linebacker NaQuinton Gainous leads the Rams’ defense with 77 tackles this season, including 11 last week against a formidable Leopard offense.

Gainous is joined by junior defensive back Greg Whelan, who racked up 12 tackles last week, and senior cornerback Tad Kornegay, who leads the team with seven interceptions.

The Georgetown offense had frustrating results once again last week, as a loss to Monmouth dropped their record to 2-5 on the year.

“We did not make many big plays,” Benson said. “We were consistent at times, but when big plays presented themselves we dropped some footballs and made some mistakes.”

The Hoyas, despite senior Drew Crawford’s 130 passing yards, were only able to put up 10 points. Freshman running back Emir Davis took most of the running game responsibilities, rushing for 69 yards on just seven carries. Davis has shown that he can step in for junior Kim Sarin and play well in difficult situations.

Overall, the penalty-plagued Georgetown offense converted only 3-of-13 third downs and punted seven times.

“We need to realize there are four games left, and we need to get our first win in the league,” Benson said.

To beat Fordham the Hoyas will need an extraordinary effort from the developing receiving core, namely senior Janiero Wooten and junior Dominique Saunders, who have each shown big-play capability. The coaching staff will also look for contributions from freshmen Jasper Ihezie and Brad Moss. Ihezie scored on a 24-yard end-around against Monmouth, displaying great speed that may have earned him valuable playing time against the Rams.

The Hoya defense will face a Fordham team with a tough passing threat. Hoya defensive ends sophomore Alex Buzbee and junior ichael Ononibaku, however, are among the Patriot League’s most feared men in the pocket. They will be responsible for flushing Daniels into situations where he has little time to sit back and hit receivers downfield. The Hoya defense sacked Monmouth six times last week, and junior linebacker Mehdi Hassan tallied another 11 tackles, putting his total at 59 for the season.

“We gave up too many big plays the other day,” Benson said. “We need to do a better job. . We had some opportunities to make some plays and we didn’t come through.”

The defense, despite playing well most of the season, has given up 23.4 points per game and has surrendered big plays. Last week, the Monmouth punter picked up 28 yards on one fourth-down play despite a bad snap.

The Hoyas will look to find consistency this week against the Rams. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. tomorrow at Jack Coffey Field in the Bronx, N.Y.

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