Ivy League announces all men’s and women’s basketball conference games to be held at Palestra in 2019

The Ivy League announced Monday that all regular season men’s and women’s conference games will be played at the Palestra in 2019, in addition to the Ivy League Tournament in March.

“The Palestra is the league’s most storied venue, and we want the kind of electric atmosphere all season long that Ivy tournament games with Penn playing in them has given us,” an Ivy League official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because the Ivy League hasn’t yet finalized details of a forthcoming press conference about the move at the Palestra likely to be conducted by Penn Athletic Director Grace Calhoun.

“This is a great win for the Ivy League,” Calhoun said. “It’s a real game-changer. Almost like when the Missouri Valley Conference got Loyola-Chicago, you might say.”

“All conference tournaments are gimmicks when you think about it,” the Ivy League official said. “Why not extend the gimmick the whole season long? We want an amped-up atmosphere at all games, not just a couple hundred people in Hanover wearing flannel or fans having to sit through technical difficulties up in Ithaca.”

The Ivy League and its athletic directors are looking forward to season-long continuity throughout its women’s and men’s basketball schedules and reclaiming the league’s reputation for doing things differently from the other Division I conferences, one cultivated by years of being the only league without a conference tournament, per league sources.

The league initially wanted a neutral site for all conference games and the league tournament, but shied away after a league analysis found that the equidistant point among all eight Ivy schools is a broom closet on the campus of Western Connecticut State University.

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Princeton discovers that its 2018 Ivy League slate was doomed by tiki curse

Princeton men’s basketball coaches and players think they’ve discovered what caused a previously inexplicable seven-game losing streak in Ivy play this past season.

Coach Mitch Henderson discovered that one of his players had unearthed a small tiki idol during the team’s stay in Hawaii for the Diamond Head Classic in December and took the idol back to Princeton as a good luck charm.

It wasn’t a good luck charm.

Instead, it turned out to be the same tiki idol worn by Greg Brady in an episode of the fourth season of The Brady Bunch.

“And it turned the rest of our season into Cousin Oliver,” Henderson lamented.

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Rick Pitino getting “whanau” tattoo as New Zealand job offer awaits

Rick Pitino is seeking a cover-up that won’t get him into trouble.

Pitino is set to get a tattoo to replace one that he received five years ago on his upper back celebrating Louisville’s national championship, since Louisville was forced to vacate that championship in February following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s basketball program in its sex scandal case. Pitino was fired in October amid a federal investigation resulting in corruption and bribery charges.

So Pitino is looking for a fresh start, and he’s got an opportunity with the New Zealand Breakers, who offered their vacant head coaching position to Pitino, per the New York Times.

Pitino hasn’t said whether he will take the New Zealand offer, but he made a telling move Monday by announcing that he plans to get a tattoo of the word “whanau,” a Maori word for extended family that is a part of New Zealand English.

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Yale to replace Rutgers in Big Ten Conference

It was announced yesterday by Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany that the composition of the Big Ten Conference was going to change.

Rutgers, a member since 2014, has been asked to leave the conference effective Jan. 1, 2019 and Yale will be joining the conference on that same date.

Rutgers has finished near the bottom in football, men’s and even women’s basketball since joining the conference.

The New Jersey school has suffered some humiliating defeats in football, including but are not limited to a 58-0 loss to Ohio State, 58-0, a 78-0 loss to Michigan and a 49-0 loss to Michigan State, just in 2016 alone.

Yale, on the other hand, is coming off of highly successful seasons in all three sports, highlighted by the 2017 Ivy championship.

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Cornell to merge men’s and women’s basketball programs

In the winter of 2016, Cornell University took the controversial step of merging its School of Hotel Administration, Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management, and the Johnson Graduate School of Management into a new College of Business.  

This past week, the University’s Committee on Organizational Structures in the Social Sciences announced another contentious recommendation to merge the College of Human Ecology, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations and the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences’ Communication and Developmental Sociology departments.  

Buried deep within the report was another idea that received no attention from the campus or the Cornell Daily Sun: the combination of the Big Red men’s and women’s basketball programs.

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Yale senior guard Tamara Simpson steals Handsome Dan

Yale announced Monday that women’s basketball senior Tamara Simpson has stolen the school’s beloved mascot, Handsome Dan.

Simpson stole Handsome Dan XVIII from caretaker Kevin Discepolo over the weekend, in a move that her coach Allison Guth said was an attempt to train the dog, given Simpson’s interest in personal training.

“She just wanted to make sure Handsome Dan didn’t have cardiovascular issues like some of his predecessors did,” Guth said. “While I don’t condone it, it was a commendable motivation.”

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Former Dartmouth standout Evan Boudreaux to transfer to Purdue instead of Xavier

Former Dartmouth forward Evan Boudreaux announced in December that he would attend Xavier next year.

Now he’s set to become a Boilermaker instead.

Boudreaux announced Thursday on Twitter that he would attend Purdue next season, having reopened his recruitment after Xavier coach Chris Mack left for Louisville:

 

Boudreaux ranked second in the Ivy League in scoring, first in rebounding and second in minutes played as a sophomore in 2016-17. The 6-foot-8 Lake Forest, Ill. native has two years of eligibility remaining.

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Yale defeats Central Arkansas, 54-50, to take WBI championship

After spending most of Wednesday traveling 1,500 miles from New Haven to Atlanta to Little Rock to Conway, Ark., the Yale women’s basketball team had enough energy left in the tank to take down the University of Central Arkansas, 54-50, for the 2018 Women’s Basketball Invitational championship.

In a defensive contest that came down to the wire, first team All-Ivy senior forward Jen Berkowitz scored the final four points for the Bulldogs (19-13) in the final minute to seal the record setting victory in front of a jammed packed 3,500-plus partisan Farris Center crowd.

The Bulldogs struggled offensively for the second straight game, hitting only three of their first 11 shots in the opening 10 minutes.  The Sugar Bears (25-10), meanwhile, shot 7-for-14, including 2-for-3 from beyond the arc, to take a 18-11 lead after the first quarter. Yale fared slightly better in the second quarter, shooting 38 percent from the field, but its defense began to lock down Central Arkansas, holding the home team to 31 percent shooting.  After 20 minutes of action, the Elis found themselves down only 27-24.

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Yale outlasts South Alabama in WBI semifinal instant classic

The Yale women’s basketball team somehow survived and advanced in an instant classic in the WBI semifinal against visiting South Alabama, roaring back from 11 points down with under two minutes to go to pull off a stunning comeback 76-74 win in overtime.

found itself home for the first time in twenty eight days, but could not find its shooting touch until the game’s sixteenth minute. By that time, the Bulldogs (18-13) were 1 for their first 25 and down 19 to the visiting Jaguars of South Alabama from the Sun Belt conference (21-13).  The Elis then went on a 11-2 run to close out the first half down only 29-19.

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Bulldogs’ bench shines as Yale moves into WBI semifinals

The Yale women (17-13) visited Binghamton (20-12) in the second round of the Women’s Basketball Invitational (WBI), and held on for a 70-64 victory to move into the tournament semifinal.  With the victory, the Bulldogs earned their second-ever postseason win and tied a program record for number of wins in a season. They are now set to face South Alabama at the John J. Lee Amphitheater on Saturday afternoon at 5:00 p.m. on the Ivy League Network.

With the score tied at eight, four minutes into the game, the Elis broke things open with a 16-2 run over the next 8:10. They extended the lead to a high of 19 late in the second quarter before closing out the half with a 17-point lead over the Bearcats. With Jen Berkowitz limited to 11 minutes due to foul trouble, junior forward Alexandra Maund put up six points (3-for-3 shooting) and six rebounds against Alyssa James, the three-time America East Defensive Player of the Year. First-year guard Tori Andrews, who missed the team’s December game against Binghamton due to an injury, came off the bench and went 3-for-3 from beyond the arc to lead Yale with 10 points.

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