Columbia Lions Set to Face Princeton Tigers in Ivy League Opener

Columbia University Athletics / Stockton Photo, Inc.

9/28/2023 10:00:00 AM

The Lions meet the Tigers to start the Ivy League slate

Story Links

PRINCETON, N.J. – The Columbia football team will hit the road for its Ivy League opener Friday, September 29 at Princeton. The Lions are 1-1 coming off a 30-0 win over Georgetown last Saturday. Kickoff at Princeton Stadium is set for 7:00 p.m. on ESPNU.


• Columbia and Princeton meet for the 92nd time Friday under the lights at Princeton Stadium.
• Columbia prepares to start Ivy League play after posting a dominant 30-0 win at home against Georgetown last Saturday. The Lions are looking for their first Ivy League opening win since 2017 when Columbia prevailed, 28-24 at Princeton.
• Mark Fabish makes his Ivy League debut as the Lions’ interim head coach after Al Bagnoli announced his retirement prior to the start of training camp in August. He has served as an assistant at Columbia since 2015 and was the offensive coordinator and assistant head coach for the past seven seasons.
• Columbia is 10-17 all-time in night contests since the first one in 1978. The Lions are also 2-8 all-time in non-Saturday games.


• Joey Giorgi finished with 120 yards on the ground for his third career 100-yard rushing performance.
• Carter McFadden racked up 108 all-purpose yards and averaged 30 yards on a pair of punt returns.
• Caden Bell completed 11 of 26 passes for 189 yards and one touchdown. Bell also scored two rushing touchdowns of his own as he totaled 26 yards on the ground.
• JJ Jenkins came up huge in the second half and finished with four catches for 119 yards and a touchdown.
• Defensively, Seth Parker led a balanced attack with five tackles and Reid Spachman had 1.5 tackles for loss.
• After being held without a catch at Lafayette, Marcus Libman had two grabs for 17 yards. He now has a reception in 21 of 22 career games.
• The shutout was the first since a 19-0 win at Dartmouth in 2021. It was the first home shutout since a 24-0 win over Iona in 2006. Additionally, it was Columbia’s first shutout in a home opener since 1998 – a 24-0 victory over Harvard.


Princeton fell at home to Bryant, 16-13 in overtime last Saturday to move to 1-1 overall this season. Bryant hit a 38-yard field goal to tie the game with 1:37 to go in the fourth before converting a 37-yarder to win the game in overtime. The loss snapped a 17-game non-conference winning streak for Princeton.

Ozzie Nicholas had 15 tackles for the Tigers, while Will Perez and Liam Johnson added nine more. John Volker rushed for 149 yards on 18 carries to record his first career 100-yard performance. Blake Stenstrom was 16-for-30 passing for 110 yards.

The defense has played a critical role for Princeton to start the season. The Princeton rushing defense ranks second in FCS and in the Ivy League. Princeton also ranks third in the FCS and second in the Ivy League in sacks to start the season. The Tigers are averaging four sacks per game.


Joey Giorgi tallied his third career 100-yard rushing performance against Georgetown as he finished with 120 yards on the ground. Giorgi finished the 2022 season with two 100-yard games. He posted his first with 103 yards and a touchdown at Marist (9/17/22). Giorgi followed that up later in the season with a career-high 159 yards on 22 carries with a 60-yard touchdown run in an overtime win at Brown (11/12/22).


After being held without a catch at Lafayette, senior wide receiver Marcus Libman had two grabs for 17 yards in the Georgetown game. He now has a reception in 21 of 22 career games. Libman started his career with a reception in 20 consecutive games, dating back to the beginning of the 2021 campaign. The streak was the fourth longest in program history and longest since 2009 when Austin Knowlin set the record of 36.


JJ Jenkins has led the receiving corps with 160 total receiving yards and one touchdown through two games this season. Jenkins tallied 119 receiving yards against Georgetown for the second 100-yard performance of his career. Last season, Jenkins hauled in seven receptions for 162 yards at Penn.


Lions return both primary returners in Carter McFadden for punts and Joey Giorgi in kickoffs. McFadden played in all 10 contests in 2022 and averaged 20.0 yards per return with a career-long of 28 at Harvard. Giorgi also played in all 10 games in 2022 and had 15 kick returns for 261 yards, averaging 17.4 yards per return.

Columbia leads the Ivy League and ranks fifth in the nation in punt returns after two games with an average of 21.75 yards per return. McFadden handled all of the returns against Georgetown as he took the opening kickoff for a 48-yard return. He then fielded two punt returns for a total of 60 yards.


• Columbia will be participating in Coach to Cure MD for the game at Princeton. Coaches will be wearing CTCMD patches on their left arm during Friday’s game.
• CTCMD is a project of Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD) in partnership with the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA)
• The goal of CTCMD is to raise awareness and funding for Duchenne muscular dystrophy while demonstrating coaches’ commitment to the betterment of young men and the core academic research missions of their universities
• CTCMD has raised over $2.1Million dollars over the past decade and won’t stop until we reach our goal of life sustaining treatments for all who are battling Duchenne MD.


Season and single-game tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting or calling 888-LIONS-11.


For the latest on the Columbia football team, follow @CULionsFB on Twitter and Instagram, on Facebook and on the web at

2023-09-28 14:03:21
#Football #Travels #Princeton #Ivy #League #Opener


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *