The morning of day two of Ivy Madness had more people in the media room and arena as the men’s teams took the stage for their interview sessions.
It’s certainly worth noting the empty media room seat left unoccupied as a tribute to Grant Wahl, the award-winning college basketball and soccer journalist who died a few months ago due to complications associated with Marfan syndrome. Wahl attended Princeton from 1992 to 1996 and began his career as a reporter for the Daily Princetonian. A very nice touch by everyone at the Ivy League office and Princeton Athletics.
Some more observations from the pre-semifinal part of the day:
Ivy League Tournament V officially started on Thursday afternoon, with the four women’s teams taking part in press conferences and shootarounds for “Live from Ivy Madness.”
This year’s edition, the first-ever tournament to take place in a suburban setting, takes place at Jadwin Gymnasium on the campus of Princeton University. While the campus is incredibly picturesque, and the athletic complex has a lot of beautiful modern buildings that fit in well with each other, the basketball arena continues to be its own unique entity.
The previous locations at Penn, Yale and Harvard had much more intimate environments, whether in the press conference room or the actual arena. This year, everything feels much larger and more spacious. I’m sure most people would see that as a positive, but I liked it more when the reporters and fans were closer to the coaches and players.
As usual, the Ivy League staff and their partners at ESPN are doing a great job getting everything organized. The campus staff are also incredibly helpful.
I can’t explain why, but there seems to be a greater security presence inside the arena than past years. There were several guards going through the media room and arena, even though there was an incredibly small crowd this afternoon. Officials have also limited access to the stairwells and have rotating staff members operating the elevator for everyone. Feels a bit odd that we aren’t allowed to press our own buttons, but I’m sure they have good reasons for doing this.