Purple and Gold…and Green

My alma mater’s football team is on a pretty impressive winning streak. The James Madison Duke Dogs won their 25th consecutive game in dramatic fashion this past Friday night. Clad in their signature purple and gold jerseys, they defeated Weber State in the quarterfinal round of the FCS playoffs. Harry Holtzclaw of JMU’s The Breeze student paper summarized things nicely:

“Anything can happen in the FCS playoffs. JMU football was down 28-20 to Weber State with just over two minutes to play in what could have been the last game of the historic season. But redshirt sophomore Riley Stapleton hauled in a 40-yard, third down touchdown catch and junior running back Trai Sharp picked up two hard-fought yards for the two-point conversion to tie the game. The Dukes eventually forced a stop, and got the ball back with just 66 seconds left on the clock. In a game that seemed it was destined for a JMU loss or overtime, redshirt freshman kicker Ethan Ratke nailed a career-long 46-yard field goal as time expired to send the Dukes to the semifinals. JMU will host South Dakota State Saturday at 4:30 p.m.”

Yes, they are in the FCS (Football Championship Subdivision), which used to be called 1-AA. So, it’s not exactly “big time college football,” but it’s still pretty darn good to win 25 games in a row at any level. My brother (also a JMU alum) and I attended the game, and even though we felt a little old at times, we enjoyed our weekend in Harrisonburg immensely.

Ethan Ratke hit a game winning, career-long 46-yard field goal as time expired.

As you might already be aware, the markets are on a very nice winning streak as well. In her Thanksgiving blog, my partner Sarah pointed out that the global stock market has posted positive gains every month in this calendar year. Since her post, the global markets also turned the November box green with a 1.8% increase.

December don’t let us down

Table displays monthly change in MSCI AC World Index since inception of index.
Source: Charles Schwab, Factset data as of 12/1/2017.  Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

We think the gains should be celebrated (much like JMU’s success!), and rather than worry about “when the market will crash,” stay vigilant with your portfolios. There are a lot of good data points supporting the global growth; consumer confidence is high, earnings are strong, and interest rates remain historically low.

The markets need one more green month for an undefeated year, and the purple and gold Dukes need two more wins for their second consecutive FCS National Championship. Here’s hoping that both of those things happen!


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