All aboard the Wayback Machine. A Fordham victory over Georgetown on Saturday would mean the Bronx school's first 7-0 start since 1930, a ticket to ride through some of New York college football's most celebrated history.
Today's Fordham players, who pounded Lehigh last week before a standing-room-only crowd of 7,000 at their Rose Hill campus, can't possibly realize how big Fordham football was before World War II. Most living souls, in fact, can't comprehend how Fordham regularly packed Yankee Stadium and the Polo Grounds with crowds in excess of 50,000 and played the sport's elite.
College football stories
Giants president John Mara went to Fordham's law school in the late 1970s. He heard stories from his father, Wellington, a Fordham grad, "about how Fordham football was such a big-time program and was more popular than our [Giants] games -- Fordham-Army, Fordham-Notre Dame -- which was inconceivable to me," John Mara said.
Wellington Mara, before he inherited the Giants from his father, Tim, was a Fordham classmate of Vince Lombardi, now familiar to current college players mostly because his name is on the Super Bowl trophy. In the mid-1930s, Lombardi was an undersized member (5-8, 180) of Fordham's storied offensive line nicknamed the "Seven Blocks of Granite," central to a 24-3-7 record over four seasons, including 20 shutouts.
When the last Seven Blocks survivor, Al Babartsky, visited Fordham's spring game before his death in 2002, he admitted he didn't recognize the place, partly because his teams never played games on campus, always at big-league stadiums.