Requiem for the Quakers

The Ancient Quaker laments the departure of ring-less Zack Rosen, the greatest Penn player he's ever witnessed. (Photo Credit: thedp.com/thebuzz)

Once again, we were lucky enough to hear from IHO commenting veteran, The Ancient Quaker. This time, the AQ closes the door on an exciting season of Penn basketball and evaluates the state of the program going forward. We hope you have a dictionary handy. The author of this piece is not affiliated with Ivy Hoops Online, but we always welcome and encourage commenters, outside contributors, and readers to share their opinions and thoughts. 

By The Ancient Quaker

I am OK. Thank you for your concern. Aside from a badly lacerated tongue and a rather embarrassing public loss of sphincter tone (both #1 and #2), I have been given the necessary intravenous anti-convulsives and all grand mal seizure activity has mercifully ceased. It feels good to be no longer foaming at the mouth and flopping on the floor like freshly landed mackerel. Although I am technically still post-ictal, I thought it only fair that I relate my feelings regarding Penn’s losing the Ivy title.

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CBI 1st Round: Penn hosts Quinnipiac

Rosen and the Quakers get their first shot at the postseason under Coach Allen as they host Quinnipiac on Wednesday night. (Photo Credit: pennathletics.com)

Penn has accepted a bid to the College Basketball Invitational Tournament and will host the Quinnipiac Bobcats in the first round on Wednesday night

at 7:30PM. Zack Rosen and Tyler Bernardini will get a well-deserved chance to play once more in front of the hometown crowd at the Palestra, and the underclassmen will get some helpful tournament experience. Quinnipiac

will be a tough opponent for the Quakers, as the NEC”s fifth-placed team led the nation in offensive rebounding percentage. The Bobcats are relentless on the glass, averaging 43 rebounds per game while playing at an average tempo. For dk – Denne side giver dig Iphone lobbyen, hvor du har oversigten over de spil du kan spille fra din Iphone. an undersized squad like Penn, it”s going to be a true challenge to compete on the boards. Quinnipiac is led by senior guard James Johnson and sophomore forward Ike Azotam, who is averaging nearly a double-double with 15.9 ppg and 9.5 rpg.

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Harvard Will Play Vanderbilt in NCAA 1st Round

Harvard will a No. 12 seed in the East region. (Photo credit: espn.com)

At Harvard’s first Selection Sunday, the Crimson found out that it would be the No. 12 seed in the East region. Its ranking met the low end of most bracket projections, leading some observers to feel that Harvard was underseeded. Personally, twelve is just a number. Far more compelling than the Committee’s opinion of the Crimson’s bona fides is the road that they have laid out for the Cantabs.

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The Wait Is Over for Harvard

The undisputed Ivy League champions of the world. (Photo credit: gocrimson.com)

When the Red Sox won the 2004 World Series, the message board Sons of Sam Horn had a thread entitled “Win It For” on which thousands

of posters listed the people for whom they wanted Boston to break the Curse. Unfortunately, I’m not the person to enumerate all of the deserving Harvard faithful. I’m too young to reach back that far in history, and even if I could, I’d be confronted by the relative poverty of the Crimson’s basketball tradition.

Still, I know this team. And the deeply satisfying part of earning the Ivy’s NCAA bid is not earning a ticket to the

Dance for the first time since 1946; it”s this team making that bit of history.

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Outright Ivy Champs: Harvard is Dancing

Princeton's victory over Penn clinches the outright title and NCAA bid for Harvard. Party on Cambridge.

Princeton came out firing and Penn”s cold first-half shooting was too much to recover from, even for Zack Rosen, as the Tigers held off the Quakers 62-52 in the season finale at Jadwin.

With Penn”s loss, Harvard claims the Ivy throne with a 12-2 record and will represent the league in the NCAA Tournament for

the first time in 66 years. Various bracketologists have predicted that the Crimson will be given a 9 or a 10 seed, though anything between an 8 and a 12 seems plausible. The Cantabs will gather together for the NCAA Tournament Selection Show on Sunday evening to find out exactly where they”re going and who they”re playing.

Harvard players, who have midterms this week, took a break from their studying to tweet celebratory Big Dance-related comments, including Keith Wright, who tweeted Whitney Houston”s iconic “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” music video and Brandyn Curry, who tweeted “LET ME GET MY DANCING SHOES ON”. Surely, the celebrations will continue deep into the night in Cambridge.

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Jesse Agel Out at Brown

Jesse Agel leaves Brown with a 39-79 overall record in four disappointing seasons. (Photo Credit: brownbears.com)

Head Coach Jesse Agel was fired on Monday after four years as the head coach of Brown. Agel”s Ivy record was 14-42 during his tenure, winning 3, 5,

4, and 2 league games respectively in the years since 2008-09. The Bears struggled in all four seasons, especially on the defensive end, as Brown ranked 7th or 8th in defensive efficiency every year. The most frustrating part for Brown fans was that Agel did manage to attract some solid talent to Providence; he was simply unable to put it all together. This final year was a disaster for reasons at least partially beyond Agel”s control as the entire starting five of the Bears” squad suffered injuries that kept them out of games at some point in the season, including two projected starters being out for the whole season in Tucker Halpern and Rafael Maia.

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Postseason Projections

We're back with an updated version of Postseason Projections as four Ivy teams fight it out for a slot in a March tournament.

The top half of the Ivy marched on towards the postseason last weekend, as Penn and Yale picked up important sweeps. Penn”s huge victory over Harvard gives the Quakers are real shot at stealing the NCAA bid, while Yale now sits one win away from that 20-win mark that historically has meant an invite to play somewhere in March. (Only two teams hit 20 wins and were not invited to a postseason tournament last season, and neither had an RPI as high as Yale”s.) For Harvard, the upset loss at home means that the Crimson need to go to New York and get two W”s to ensure that, at worst, they”ll get a shot at revenge against Penn in a playoff. Princeton”s loss at Harvard all but ended their NCAA hopes, though a strong finish could still propel them onto the NIT bubble. Let”s look at what some smart people around the Internet are saying about Ivy postseason chances, and then I”ll give my updated projections on where each top half team will end up.

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The Puzzling Decisions Behind Harvard's Defeat

Wanted: For Crimes Against Common Sense (Photo credit: gocrimson.com)

At first, I couldn’t believe the officials signaled a charge on Kyle Casey in the final moments of Saturday’s loss to Penn. But after watching the replay, I begrudgingly admitted that the referees were not crazy to have called an offensive foul. As my anger towards the officials gradually subsided, I slowly realized the true cause of Harvard’s loss: Tommy Amaker coached the Crimson out of a victory. 

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The Aftermath

Penn celebrates after a dramatic 55-54 victory pulled the Quakers even in the loss column with Harvard as the Ivy League enters its final weekend. (Photo Credit: boston.com)

Basking in the glow of last night”s Penn victory, the shameless anti-Harvard critic, devoted Penn supporter and loyal IHO commenter The Ancient Quaker weighs in on the altered landscape of the Ivy League standings this morning. The author of this piece is not affiliated with Ivy Hoops Online, but we always welcome and encourage commenters, outside contributors, and readers to share their opinions and thoughts. 

Let me begin with a retraction—the Columbia Lions are not a dangerous team after getting blown out by Brown.

Loyal followers of Ivy Hoops Online, if you need to know anything about The Ancient Quaker know this: The Ancient Quaker does not gloat. (Even though Harvard’s home winning streak has now passed in to history like so many illegal recruiting trips.) The Ancient Quaker does not revel in another team’s misfortune. (Unless of course that team resides in Cambridge, Massachusetts.) And finally, The Ancient Quaker is above all not self-righteous. (But I told you so.)

Now excuse me a moment while I climb down from my high horse.

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Friday's Best

Kyle Casey led Harvard to the brink of an Ivy title with a big 20-point, 8-rebound performance against Princeton on Friday night. (Photo Credit: gocrimson.com)

Best Clutch Defense: The Crimson pulled this one out thanks to a late-game stretch of lockdown defense. Between 8:17 and 2:02 remaining in the game, Harvard held Princeton scoreless, a stretch during which a 55-54 Tigers lead turned into 59-55 Crimson advantage (Harvard wasn”t exactly lighting it up late in this one either). The Cantabs went 8-8 from the line down the stretch to seal the victory. The scoring was provided by the big men on this night, as Kyle Casey went for 20 pts and 8 rbs, while Keith Wright pitched in with 12 pts and 6 rbs. Brandyn Curry gave Harvard a key second half spark and finished with 15 pts, 6 ast, and 0 turnovers. Oliver McNally also added 13 including going 6-6 from the line in the final eighteen seconds. For Princeton, the scoreless drought doomed the Tigers, who stopped getting the good looks that had been so plentiful in the first half. The ball stopped moving crisply and the shots were contested, and they just didn”t fall. Ian Hummer and Doug Davis each had 14 and Patrick Saunders had 12 points in a huge first half, but didn”t get any looks in the second half. With the loss, Princeton falls out of the Ivy title race. Meanwhile, Harvard”s home win streak moves to 28 and the Crimson can now turn its focus to Penn. Harvard can clinch at least a share of the Ivy title with a win tomorrow night.

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