These Are All the Times Big 5 Teams Squared Off During March Madness

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As you probably know by now, there’s a chance that Villanova and Temple play each other in the second round of the NCAA Tournament this weekend at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

As if the tournament wasn’t wild enough, now two Philly schools could be facing off against one another to not only gain their usual bragging rights but also end one another’s season. This got us thinking: When has this happened before?

In earlier eras of the NCAA Tournament, teams were actually placed in the region that they hailed from geographically. This meant that it was a little more likely that Big 5 schools would play one another. Still, it’s only happened five times in the history of the NCAA Tournament, with all five matchups taking place between 1970 and 1978.

Here’s a look at each of those games: Read more »

The Philly Hoops Fan’s Guide to the NCAA Tournament

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The NCAA tournament is here! Officially called the National Collegiate Athletic Association Men’s Division I Basketball Championship, we shorten it to “NCAA tournament” because that’s much, much easier to say.

The beauty of the NCAA tournament is that literally every team can become your favorite in about an hour or two. At 4:30 you’d just learned of the existence of South Dakota State University, then at 6:30 you’re wearing an official team t-shirt and screaming at the TV for the Jackrabbits (good name!) to beat Maryland.

But it’s also fun to check out the local products — the players and teams and coaches you can root for because they’re from Philly. As is fitting for such a big basketball city, there are a ton of local angles to this year’s tournament. Here’s what you should look out for. Read more »

Inside Higher Ed’s Academic Performance NCAA Bracket Is Out, And …

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From the 2016 Inside Higher Ed academic bracket.

Every year, Inside Higher Ed attempts to counter our nation’s widespread sports insanity by publishing its own version of the NCAA men’s basketball tourney’s brackets, comparing teams according to their work in the classroom as measured by the Academic Progress Rate and, in the case of a tie, the Graduation Success Rate. If two teams still tie, IHE turns to their relative Federal Graduation Rates. (That’s right. There now exist analytics for every goddamn thing.) This year’s academic bracket is out, and … let’s just say IHE doesn’t foresee one shining moment for any of Philly’s teams.

In case you hadn’t heard, Villanova, Temple and St. Joe’s all made the tournament cut. Read more »

Villanova and Temple Could Meet in the NCAA Tournament

Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dribbles past Temple Owls guard Quenton DeCosey (25) during the first half at Liacouras Center, February 17, 2016.

Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dribbles past Temple Owls guard Quenton DeCosey (25) during the first half at Liacouras Center, February 17, 2016.

The NCAA tournament selection committee handed Philadelphia basketball fans a present for March Madness: Villanova and Temple could play in the second round of the NCAA tournament.

Villanova received the No. 2 seed in the South Region of the NCAA tournament, with the Owls getting the No. 10 seed in the same region. If the Wildcats beat 15th-seeded UNC Asheville (they almost certainly will) and the Owls beat 7th-seeded Iowa (the Hawkeyes have lost 6 of 8), Villanova and Temple will meet in the second round. Both teams play their first games on Friday; the second game would be on Sunday.

Additionally, the Owls-Hawkeyes matchup has an additional Philly connection: Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery is a Philly native who went to La Salle and Penn, was nickanmed “White Magic” and began his coaching career at Lehigh. Though journalists who have been on mock selection committees report it’s too hectic for the people who make the bracket to set up these storylines intentionally, it’s pretty fun when it happens. Read more »

How to Watch Today’s Big 5 Tripleheader on TV Today

St. Joe's DeAndre Bembry (left); Villanova's Josh Hart (right)

St. Joe’s DeAndre Bembry (left); Villanova’s Josh Hart (right)

Philly oldtimers talk about the days of Big 5 double- and tripleheaders: When you’d be able to go to the Palestra and see two or three Philly teams in consecutive games. It’s all part of the mystique of college basketball in this city.

It’s not quite as good, but today there’s a Philly college hoops tripleheader on TV — and you don’t even need to leave your house to see it. Three Big 5 teams that could all make the NCAA tournament are in action in their conference tournaments today. Read more »

Which Philly Schools Will Make It to March Madness?

Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dribbles past Temple Owls guard Quenton DeCosey (25) during the first half at Liacouras Center on February 17th.

Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dribbles past Temple Owls guard Quenton DeCosey (25) during the first half at Liacouras Center on February 17th.

If this were any other year, March Madness would already have begun.

Instead, it’s a leap year. We have to wait one more day for March. But it’s a good time to look at the city’s six Division I basketball teams, and what chances they have of making it to the NCAA tournament and beyond. Read more »

Temple Is Playing at Penn State on September 17th This Year

Students in the Temple Owls student section cheer during the fourth quarter against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Lincoln Financial Field on Sept. 5, 2015. Temple defeated Penn State 27-10. Photo | Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Students in the Temple Owls student section cheer during the fourth quarter against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Lincoln Financial Field on Sept. 5, 2015. Temple defeated Penn State 27-10. Photo | Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Last year, Temple beat Penn State for the first time since 1941. That’s 74 years! Next season, they’ll travel to Happy Valley to try to make it two in a row. Temple announced that that game will be on September 17th when the team announced its 2016 football schedule.

Temple rallied from a 10-point deficit and ended up beating the Nittany Lions going away, 27-10, at the Linc last season. But winning on the road is a tougher matter altogether: The Owls lost 30-13 the last time they played in State College, and Penn State was 6-1 at home last season. Read more »

Swastika, Racial Slur Drawn in Snow on Car Near Temple

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Surveillance footage released by Temple Police

Temple Police have released surveillance images of three men wanted for questioning after a racial slur and a swastika were found drawn in the snow on a car near Temple’s campus.

Kelly Dawson, president of Temple’s Black Student Union, found the swastika and slur sometime last week. Temple cops are asking anyone with information to contact them at 215-204-1234. Tips can also be called in to 215-204-6493 submitted online. Read more »

Local Colleges Still Losing War Against Student Drinking

Pity the poor American institution of higher learning. Student drinking on campuses leads to property damage, arrests, injuries and deaths, hazings, and a tsunami of reports of student sexual assaults. (Research shows that 89 percent of those assaults involve drinking.) A recent study declared Pennsylvania colleges sixth in the nation in alcohol arrests of students, led by Shippensburg, East Stroudsburg, Lehigh, Penn Tech, Penn State and Kutztown — not the sort of high ranking universities crave. So naturally, administrators are doing their damnedest to clamp down on alcohol. At Swarthmore College, for example, new rules — no more hard liquor at school-sponsored parties, no more drinking games like beer pong, no more punch or party bowls — went into effect on campus in the fall of 2014. Students, predictably, were not enthused. “Seriously — can the admin with a straight face — indeed genuinely — defend these rules?” one incredulous undergrad demanded in the student newspaper, the Daily Gazette.

A year and a half later, a new report from Swarthmore’s department of public safety shows that while alcohol incidents at the campus’s three major social events dipped slightly in the first year of the more stringent prohibitions, they’ve since soared to new heights. (Nifty chart here.) Read more »

Temple Grad Directs Sort-of-Sequel to J.J. Abrams’ Cloverfield

The trailer for the upcoming 10 Cloverfield Lane — which the Inquirer reports was released without warning on January 15th — is downright eerie, to say the least. We have first-time director, Philly area native and 2003 Temple graduate Dan Trachtenberg to thank.

Everything seems fine at first. Three people pass the time with puzzles and board games in a cozy bunker set to “I Think We’re Alone Now” — until we see that something more sinister is going on.

As per IMDB, in Trachtenberg’s sort-of-sequel to Cloverfield (2008), a woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) hunkers down with two men, (John Goodman and John Gallagher Jr.) but her suspicion grows that she has been abducted. They insist that a chemical attack has rendered the outside world uninhabitable and that they saved her life after she was involved in a terrible car accident. Read more »

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