Sept. 30, 2001
Providence, Rhode Island - Brown's football team needed an exceptional effort to compete with ninth-ranked Rhode Island of the Atlantic 10 conference. In a game that saw six lead changes in the fourth quarter alone, URI scored a TD with seven seconds remaining to beat Brown 42-38.
The Brown Football record book took a beating this weekend against the unbeaten Rams, with All-American wide receiver Chas Gessner (Hyattsville, MD) and senior quarterback Kyle Rowley (Saunderstown, RI) coming away with single game Brown records.
Gessner could prove to be the most dominating wide receiver in Ivy League history. Two-weeks ago against Harvard, Gessner thought he had a new Brown record with 226 receiving yards. A mistake by the Harvard stat crew, discovered later in the week, reduced Gessner's numbers to 11 catches for 217 yards, no longer a school record.
The 6-5, 220 Gessner responded with a record-setting performance, tying a school record with 19 receptions, smashing the school record for receiving yards with 269. Along the way, Gessner grabbed three touchdown passes, on receptions of five, 18 and 23 yards. Gessner's acrobatic 23-yard touchdown reception came with 1:03 remaining in the game and put Brown in the lead, 38-35. Gessner's 269 yards are the most by an Ivy League player ever in a non-league game.
The previous receptions mark was held by Stephen Campbell '01, who caught 19 passes against Rhode Island last year, and is the most for a non-league game in Ivy history (also tied with Campbell). Sean Morey '99 held the previous Brown record for reception yards with 221 yards vs. Cornell in 1998.
Where does Gesner stand in the NCAA I-AA national rankings this season? He leads the nation by a wide margin with 15.0 receptions per game and in receiving yards with 243.0 yards per game.
Not to be outdone, Rowley, making his second career start, passed for a school-record 474 yards, eclipsing the previous mark of 473 yards by James Perry '00 against Dartmouth in 1977. It was the third best passing performance in the Ivy League record book. Rowley completed 36 of 54 passes, tossing two touchdowns on passe of 5 and 23 yards. He also scored a touchdown on a four-yard run against the Rams. Rowley's 36 pass completions are sixth best in Brown football history.
Kyle had another strong target to throw to, his brother, Travis. The senior wide receiver perplexed the Rams defense all day, catching 9 passes for 141 yards. Travis also threw an 18 yard touchdown pass to Gessner.
Senior runningback Michael Malan (St. Louis, MO) made five catches for 54 yards, but was held to 14 yards rushing on 11 carries. He scored on a two yard run early in the second quarter. Brown's defense was led by senior linebacker Joel Barone (Shirley, NY), who made 11 tackles, including one for a loss. Senior tackle Dewey Ames (Atlanta, GA), junior linebacker Hunter Young (Bethesda, MD), and junior Selom Azuma (Rockville, MD) registered 9 tackles each.