NEW YORK—Columbia Football returns to the gridiron for 12 days of spring practice during the months of March and April and will host its annual Spring Game on Saturday, April 21, Patricia and Shepard Alexander Head Coach of Football Al Bagnoli announced Wednesday afternoon.
Columbia Football’s spring practice schedule will begin on Tuesday, March 20. All practices will take place at Robert K. Kraft Field at Lawrence A. Wien Stadium and are open to the public.
Columbia’s spring football game is scheduled for Saturday, April 21 at Robert K. Kraft Field. Kickoff is at 11 a.m. The program’s spring cookout will be held directly following the scrimmage. Admission to the spring game is free.
Columbia Football has also scheduled a Bone Marrow Drive, scheduled to be held on the Morningside Heights campus on Friday, April 20. Details will be released at a later date.
Columbia returns 15 of 21 starters (eight on offense and seven on defense) and 58 total letterwinners to a program that experienced its best season in 21 years. The 2017 Lions finished with their best season since 1996 as they posted an 8-2 regular season, a second place finish in the Ivy League and a 5-2 Ivy League record. In addition, Columbia began a season with six straight wins for the first time since 1945, put together the school’s longest win streak (seven games) for the first time since 1935 and its five-win turnaround from 2016 to 2017 ranked among the top-five best yearly comebacks in the FCS.
Six All-Ivy League picks return in First Team wide receiver Josh Wainwright (78 catches for school-record 1,001 yards and 8 TD), Second Team safety Landon Baty (66 tackles, 4 INT, 1 FR, 2 FF) and Honorable Mention picks wide receiver Ronald Smith (31 catches for 437 yards and 4 TD in only 7 GP), linebacker Michael Murphy (42 tackles, 6.0 TFL, 2 FR in 8 GP), offensive lineman Markham Paukune (10 consecutive starts) and kickoff returner/defensive back Will Allen (507 yards on 21 KOR).
Returning offensive starters also include wide receiver Kyle Castner (24 catches, 286 yards, TD), tight end Rory Schlageter, left guard Charlie Flores (23 career starts), center Tyler Schonewolf (20 consecutive starts), right guard Parker Coogan (10 consecutive starts) and on defense, right end Mike Hinton (18 career starts, 25 tackles), linebacker Jalen Williams (32 tackles, 2.0 sacks), linebacker Sean White (48 tackles, 5.0 TFL, 2 INT), defensive back Ryan Gilbert (team-leader with 95 tackles) and defensive back Ben McKeighan (37 tackles, 2 INT). In addition, a variety of other key players who saw extensive action in 2017 return.
Columbia will announce its 2018 fall schedule and ticket availability at a later date.
2018 COLUMBIA FOOTBALL SPRING PRACTICE SCHEDULE
(as of February 28, 2018, practice times and dates subject to change)
Tuesday, March 20, Practice One, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, March 23, Practice Two, 3:45 p.m.
Sunday, March 25, Practice Three, 3:45 p.m.
Tuesday, March 27, Practice Four, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, March 30, Practice Five, 3:45 p.m.
Tuesday, April 3, Practice Six, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, April 6, Practice Seven, 3:45 p.m.
Tuesday, April 10, Practice Eight, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, April 13, Practice Nine, 3:45 p.m.
Sunday, April 15, Practice 10, 3:45 p.m.
Tuesday, April 17, Practice 11, 3:00 p.m.
Friday, April 20, Bone Marrow Day, TBA (to be held on Morningside Heights campus)
Saturday, April 21, Spring Game, 11:00 a.m.; Spring Cookout, 1:00 p.m.
All practices will take place at Robert K. Kraft Field at Lawrence A. Wien Stadium (corner of 218th & Broadway Avenue in Manhattan).