We’re counting down the top 10 moments in each Ivy school’s history as part of our Ivy League at 60 retrospective. Penn is next because Quakers are your Friends.
Before he was the head coach of the Dream Team, or his two NBA Championships with the Detroit Pistons, or his 1994 induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame, before he was “Daddy Rich” and Dennis Rodman’s online casino surrogate father, Chuck Daly was the most successful head coach (by percentage) of the Penn Quakers. From 1971-77, he complied a 125-38 record which included a 74-10 Ivy League mark. His 1971-72 team finished 25-3 and advanced to the NCAA East Regional Final, eventually losing to Dean Smith’s North Carolina Tar Heels.
For each of Daly’s first four seasons, the Quakers won 20 or more games as well as the Ivy and Big 5 Titles. (It should also be noted that the Bad Boys of Detroit were formed through collaboration with Pistons general manager “Trader” Jack McCloskey, another former Penn head coach from 1956-66.) Chuck Daly is arguably one of the five greatest coaches on any level in basketball history.
Naturally, it all started at Penn.