Bernie Sanders at the podium at Temple University’s Liacouras Center. Photo | Kyle Laskowski
Bernie Sanders spoke before a packed-in crowd at The Liacouras Center on Temple’s Main Campus Wednesday night. He and his camp cast the upcoming Pennsylvania primary on April 26th as a critical step in furthering their recently burgeoning momentum. This came on the heels of their still-fresh snag of Wisconsin’s primary on Tuesday.
“A lot has happened in the last 11 months,” Sanders said. “When we started we were 3 percent in the polls, about 60 points behind Secretary Clinton. There was a poll out today, a national poll: We were up 2 points!” Read more »
Sanders’ visit to Philadelphia was captured and shared widely on the Twitter and Instagram social media platforms, often under hashtags like #PhiltheBern and #PhillytheBern. Here are some of the best posts we saw.
Former Villanova coach Rollie Massimino (right) with head coach Jay Wright after the Wildcats beat North Carolina in the NCAA championship game.
The very first time I went to the Palestra, I almost got run over by Bill Cosby.
My dad took me to the Atlantic 10 tournament. This was a doubleheader with a Temple–Saint Joseph’s game and another quarterfinal. As we went up the walkway toward the gym, an older man was laughing with his friends and clowning around. He crashed into me. It wasn’t a big deal — I wasn’t knocked over or anything — but my dad turned to the guy ask him to knock it off. When he did, he realized it was Cosby.
I guess I eventually got Cosby back for this, but I remember what happened afterward much better: Temple beat Joe’s by 15 points, and I got my first introduction to Big 5 basketball.
That was not my only Atlantic 10 tournament. My dad took me again the very next year. St. Joe’s looked like they were going to lose to Rutgers. They trailed by 13 at one point. But the Hawks rallied and won it on a Bernard Blunt three-point play with just seconds left. I had never heard a louder crowd. Read more »
Temple plays Iowa in the first round of the NCAA tournament today at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Rather than taking a charter bus from the hotel to the arena, coach Fran Dunphy and the Owls rode the New York City subway to the game instead.
The Owls also rode the subway to practice yesterday. “It’s an important part of getting into the flavor of New York City,” Dunphy said yesterday. “Our bus driver took the same route as us and drove into the city, and it took him over an hour. It took us 26 minutes.” Read more »
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.
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 »
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.
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 »
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 »