There is no denying that Yale men’s basketball has tremendous talent. From the one through eight slots, Yale may have the best talent in the Ivy League.
But there is also no denying that another adjective applies to the Bulldogs. Coach James Jones used that word very pointedly in his postgame comments after a 75-71 loss to Fairfield at John J. Lee Amphitheater Wednesday night.
With the season a few weeks away, the Ivy League hosted its Men’s Basketball Media Day on Thursday. the second of two hoops-themed media availabilities. The event was hosted over Zoom for media members and is available on the conference’s YouTube channel.
The preseason media poll was released on Tuesday with Yale, last year’s regular season co-champions, securing the top spot. Princeton, which used its Ivy League Tournament title victory as a springboard to a Sweet 16 NCAA Tournament run, was picked second.
The Bulldogs received 14 of 16 first-place votes, while the Tigers earned the other two top votes.
Penn’s season collapsed with the blow of a referee’s whistle with 90 seconds to go in its Ivy League tournament semifinal against Princeton. If Nick Spinoso’s charge on the Tigers’ Keeshawn Kellman in a one-point game had been ruled a no-call or a flop, would Penn have advanced?
Yale can ask itself a similar question. If August Mahoney — the third-best free throw shooter in the country — converted his one-and-one with 2:18 to go in a three-point game in the Ivy League Tournament final against Princeton, would the Bulldogs have completed their furious second-half rally?
Both those teams could only watch as Princeton went on to go on a magical run to the Sweet 16, the deepest an Ivy League champion has gone in the NCAA Tournament since 2010.
Plenty of Penn fans are probably still bitter, and could you blame them?
But a look at the Quakers’ returning roster indicates that fans’ high expectations for redemption in 2023-24 will be well-justified: