Temple Football Is Good in Class, Too
Good morning, Philadelphia. Here’s what you need to know today.
Temple’s football team isn’t just really good. It’s pretty smart, too.
More good news in an already-great year. The New America think tank took the final Top 25 ranking in college football, and rescrambled it to rank each team’s academics. Temple — which ranks 24th on the field — came in seventh. Even better! (Academic powerhouses Northwestern, Notre Dame, and Stanford took the top three spots, respectively.) The foundation of the ranking? Each team’s football graduation success rate, a formal stat that doesn’t penalize teams whose players leave early because of transfer or growing pro. Colleges are penalized in New America’s rankings, though, if players graduate at a lower rate than the rest of the student population. So Temple’s players might be going to a bowl game this year — there’s also a pretty good chance that they’ll be collecting diplomas, as well.
Mother Teresa is about to become a saint. They’ll be celebrating at the convent she helped start in Norristown.
AP reports that Pope Francis has signed off on the final miracle needed to make Mother Teresa a saint. The nun, who became famous serving the poor of India, was instrumental in getting approval for a convent for her order, the Missionaries of Charity, in Norristown in 1984. As the Inquirer reported when she died in 1997, there was community opposition to the convent — over fears it would draw homeless people to the area — before Mother Teresa came to town and met with local officials. Among them: Sam Vallone, a member of the borough council at the time. After the meeting, he agreed to support the convent, saying: “I want to make it clear that Sam Vallone will not go on record as voting against a saint.” The opposition quickly crumbled after that. It’s expected that her canonization will take place in September.
A Harrisburg teen has been charged with helping ISIS. His neighbors are shocked.
Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz, 19, a U.S. citizen, is charged with providing material support to the terrorist group, accused of using 57 different Twitter accounts to threat violence against America, CBS3 reports. He helped ISIS by “by propagating their hateful rhetoric on social media and aiding individuals in their pursuit of traveling overseas to join the designated foreign terrorist organization.” Says one neighbor: “It’s pretty crazy, when it’s right here at home. … You hear it from California or Paris, but then it’s right up the street, it’s real.”
New Jersey legislators have approved a rescue plan for Atlantic City and its troubled finances.
The Press of Atlantic City reports the bill — after some tweaking asked for by Gov. Chris Christie, who vetoed an earlier version — provides financial assistance to the city while restructuring the taxes paid by the city’s remaining casinos. It creates a “payment in lieu of taxes” program for the next 15 years: During that time, the casinos will collectively pay $$120 million in taxes to the city, assuming casino revenue stays stable. (That’s a big assumption.) The N.J. Senate must still sign off on the bill.
One more sign the tanking era is officially over: The Sixers have reportedly signed Mike D’Antoni to be associate head coach.
The Inquirer says he was spotted in Philadelphia International Airport on Thursday night. D’Antoni, 64, is probably best remembered as coach of the Phoenix Suns during their 2003-08 run as one of the best teams never to win an NBA title. It’s doubtful that he’s a coach-in-waiting for current head coach Brett Brown — who just signed a two-year contract extension — but it’s thought he brings a needed veteran presence to a team that’s young both on the bench and on the court. The hiring follows the recent addition of basketball hall-of-famer Jerry Colangelo to the team’s executive suite. The Sixers, need you be reminded, are 1-26.
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