Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Lebo Grad Good Fit with Cornell Squad Big Red Leans on Hagy's Many Talents

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Lebo Grad Good Fit with Cornell Squad Big Red Leans on Hagy's Many Talents

Article excerpt

David Archer may be the youngest head coach in NCAA Division I football, but he's no dummy -- he knows when he has talent and he's willing to ride him.

Cornell University quarterback Jeff Mathews entered his senior season already the Big Red's career passing leader. He was the first sophomore to win Ivy League player of the year and was on most preseason Division I-AA All-America teams.

It's no wonder, then, that Archer's offense is centered around his NFL-caliber quarterback.

But the first-year coach also is smart enough to know who will be carrying the torch in the future ... Mt. Lebanon High School graduate Luke Hagy.

"We've already talked to Luke about what it means when Jeff graduates, what it means to be a leader of a team in college, what it means to be a focal point of an offense," Archer said. "He was already that in high school but what does it mean to be a leader at the college level. He's our man."

Hagy is a sophomore running back at Cornell who had an excellent freshman season. He was Cornell's leading rusher with 528 yards, finished ranked in the Ivy League top 10 in rushing, receptions, all- purpose yards and scoring, and was named to the College Sports Journal Division I-AA All-Freshman Team.

Though his numbers are down this season, it's not for lack of effort ... and Archer would know a thing or two about a running back's effort. A three-year starter at Cornell as an offensive lineman, Archer was a Big Red captain in 2005.

"Playing on the offensive line, nobody notices you unless you make a mistake," Archer said. "If somehow you make a mistake and Luke gets tackled for a loss or he gets hit hard, he's such a team guy, you never hear him complain.

"Blocking for him would be fun because, even if you don't block your guy, he still makes 4 yards."

Hagy is once again the top running back at Cornell. On a team that isn't running the ball very much -- Cornell rushed 22 times for 52 yards in a 48-23 loss to Monmouth Saturday -- Hagy leads the team in carries with 32 and is second in yardage with 69. He also is the top receiving back with 24 catches for 294 yards.

"It's not really about me, it's about the team," Hagy said. …

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