This moment needed Gus Johnson. Villanova won in overtime, 82-77. They are 11-0. \\//11 Comments
JayVaughn Pinkston scored the go-ahead bucket in the final minute and then blocked Michigan’s Zak Irvin with five seconds to play to seal the deal – and the Liberty Classic – for Villanova.
Here are the full highlights with Ryan Fannon’s radio call. JVP block at around 2:00:
via VUHoops.com18 Comments
12th ranked Villanova DESTROYED 14th ranked VCU in the semifinals of the Legends Classic in Brooklyn last night. They’ll take on 19th ranked Michigan in the finals at 10 p.m.(!) tonight. Both the Cats and Wolverines are 4-0. Something has to give, and it’ll probably be the team in that weird shade of yellow.
Today, Villanova’s athletic department put out this video, which certainly has the same feel as one of those outstanding #FlyEaglesFly releases. Nice use of social media. Keeps the V’s coming.24 Comments
Jalen Brunson, a 6’1″ 190 lb. consensus 5-star point guard from Lincolnshire, Ill., has verbally committed to the Villanova Wildcats. Brunson, who plays his high school basketball for Stevenson (IL) and for the Mac Irvin Fire on the AAU circuit, announced his decision at a press conference at his high school on Wednesday afternoon.
Prior to the trip to Villanova, Brunson had visited in-state Illinois, and had planned trips to Temple (his father Rick’s alma mater), Michigan State and Purdue. Most had long considered the Owls’ the frontrunner due to the family ties, but Jay Wright and his staff were able to convince Jalen – originally from Cherry Hill, NJ – to continue his career in on the Main Line.
It's a great day to be a Villanova Wildcat! #novanation
— Jay Wright (@VUCoachJWright) September 10, 2014
And now, here’s some stuff that fell by the wayside this week:
Homefront Gameplay Walkthrough
That post-Korean-invasion video game that will be set in an occupied Philadelphia released a gameplay walkthrough at E3 this week. There’s not much in the way of landmarks or Philly-isms in the video, but hey, the game looks pretty cool.
Jay Wright at #18
ESPN’s college basketball site has been ranking the top 50 coaches in college basketball, and Villanova’s Jay Wright landed at the number 18 spot. Here’s some of what Dana O’Neil — who used to cover Nova for the Daily News — had to say:
“‘The perception is he’s the handsome guy that wears the $5,000 suits,’ said Patrick Chambers, the coach at Penn State who spent five years as Wright’s assistant coach at Villanova. ‘But so many people are out there trying to impress other coaches with how smart they are and what they do. Jay isn’t into any of that. He’s so comfortable in his own skin.’
Some of that comes with time. Wright has been at this head-coaching gig now for 19 years, the last 12 at Villanova. He knows the game, as in basketball, and he knows The Game, as in the business of basketball.
But so much of his talent is innate. In his first year at Villanova, he attracted a highly skilled recruiting class and most everyone expected immediate results. Immediate instead took a backseat to two painful years in the NIT. Yet when everyone — including those who now count themselves as die-hard, lifelong fans — wanted Wright out for lack of production, he didn’t blink.”
Report on the Katz Crash
The NTSB report on the plane crash that killed Lewis Katz and others has been released, and among its findings — according to the Inquirer — is that pilot error may be to blame:
“Flight data recorders found no evidence that the two pilots performed a preflight check. Apparently they didn’t realize that the Gulfstream jet’s tail flaps, known as elevators, were locked when it tried to takeoff from Hanscom field outside Boston on May 31, the report indicated.”
The Central Bucks Browns
As the Cleveland Browns hope to finally actually begin to rebuild, around one so-called Mr. Football, it’s worth pointing out the many of the minds behind Cleveland’s on-field product are local guys. New head coach Mike Pettine and his defensive coordinator and linebackers coach all played at Doylestown’s CB West under the coaching guidance of Pettine’s father. A Cleveland.com piece follows Pettine back to Doylestown and also gives you an insight into the new head honcho of the Browns’ sartorial inclinations:
“Dressed in a Foo Fighters T-shirt and a pair of camo shorts, Pettine enjoyed his respite from trying to turn around one of the NFL’s perennial losers. He stood around a high-top table, watching the Belmont, sipping on a beer and accepting a few man hugs from locals who marvel at his transformation from high school coach to low-level NFL assistant to Browns head coach.
What made the two-day trip special was the toggling between past and present. Pettine brought members of the Browns coaching staff on a limousine bus across the width of Pennsylvania to work an annual youth football clinic run by Browns defensive coordinator Jim O’Neil. Pettine, O’Neil and linebackers coach Chuck Driesbach all played at CB West in different decades under Mike Pettine Sr.”
Long Fly Balls
According to the estimations and calculations of ESPN’s Mark Simon, the Phillies outfield is one of the worst in baseball when it comes to catching balls hit to the deepest parts of the park. They rank 24th in making outs on balls hit 350-ish+ feet in the air. File this under “least surprising news of the week.”
Gregory Kaminski at Maass Media took a look at fan loyalty in Philadelphia, factoring in attendance of the Phillies and Flyers — discounting the Eagles because of their small sample size and the Sixers because oh boy they’ve been terrible — and figured out what we already knew: Philly fans are loyal. Kaminsky discovered both the Phillies and Flyers, over the past eight years, have attendance numbers above the league average. Kaminsky says:
“So does this data prove anything? I’m not really sure, but it does help to move the conversation forward and give us sports fans something to talk and debate about. And isn’t that all we really want anyway?”
We disagree, what it tells us is holy shit the MLB has terrible league-wide attendance numbers.
Giving You The Peacock
And finally, up in New York, 30 Rockefeller Plaza (aka the G.E. Building and the RCA Building before that) will soon wear the brand of Comcast, a small regional company. According to PhillyMag, 30 Rock will soon sport “big, glowing neon lights that will shout ‘COMCAST’ to the Big Apple sky.” It’s a way for Comcast to flaunt their power over New York, but this is also a great time to point out the our own Comcast Tower has no large signage denoting it as such, and we’re 100% on board with that.16 Comments
This popped up in my timeline this morning. It’s a picture taken last week when Jay Wright and other notable but less good looking college coaches visited Washington for a leadership forum at the Pentagon. The trip apparently included a stop at the West Wing for an Oval Office photo with the President.
That would be Jay’s wife, Patti, whom Obama’s right arm is around. And as you might recall, Patti has sort of a crush on Barry. From one of the first posts ever on this site (March, 2010):
“I always thought he had a great basketball mind. I really did,” Wright said about Obama. “I like his game. I saw him play. I hope he’s right. If the president likes your program, that’s a great thing. I’ll take it. I voted for him. If [his wife] Patti gets to meet him, that’s even better. She loves him, more than [she does] me. She said, ‘What does that mean? Do I get to meet him?’ [His son] Reilly wants to meet him to. But Patti’s got a crush on him.”
Tough to compete with the President and his massive Resolute desk.13 Comments
You’ve probably heard about The Basketball Tournament… a single-elimination basketball tournament (as it turns out) coming to Philadelphia University on June 6-8. 32 teams were selected out of more than 100 applicant squads– 24 based on the size of their “fan group” and 8 selected by the tournament committee. The final two teams to come out of that opening weekend will advance to play in the championship game on June 28 at the fan-decided home court of one of the two teams, with the winning squad taking home $500k in cash.
The rules are only this: Players have to be 18 or older, a legal US resident, and willing to forgo any amateur status that they may have (with the NCAA). This is a straight-up cash tournament, the likes of which has never been seen before. Needless to say, many former college and fringe NBA players are in the tournament – such as Smush Parker and Rashad McCants on Big Apple Basketball – but the best, most cohesive group, according to biased Nova grads, might be Team Roby:
The city of brotherly love will be well represented in TBT. ROBY (Rock Out Be You) brings back Villanova’s 2009 Final Four team, including Scottie Reynolds, Dante Cunningham, Dwayne Anderson, Corey Fisher and Reggie Redding. This time around, however, the team’s singular goal is to win the whole thing in front of an adoring Philadelphia fan-base. At least four other contenders list their hometown as Philadelphia.
Good God, they’re getting the squad back together.
The Basketball Tournament has gotten a lot of attention online. I’ve had a few teams reach out to me about being a supporter, sponsor or manager of some sort (so they could get enough fans to qualify), and though I would’ve loved to have gotten involved, it was too much of a time commitment (hence why I’m hiring a second person). But consider my support firmly tossed behind Team Roby and the 09 Cats. In fact… they could probably use some warmups:15 Comments
Congratulations to the winners of our Crossing Broad-Cibos bracket challenge. Your top finishers and prize winners:
First place: Kelbelle521-Totes Ma Goats, winner of an iPad Air
Second place: Rematch-thedahc, winner of their choice of a signed Domonic Brown baseball or a $60 gift card to the Crossing Broad Store
Third place: By virtue of National Championship score tiebreaker, Joey Beppler-Simply McNabbulous, winner of a signed Domonic Brown baseball or a $60 gift card to the Crossing Broad Store
I’ve already been in touch with Kelbelle, but if you’re Rematch or Joey Beppler, please email CrossingBroad[at]gmail[dot]com to claim your prize.
Thanks to our tremendous sponsor, Cibos. If you haven’t already, please, please check out the Cibos App, where you can get automated sports scores right inside your Twitter app. No need to search timelines for the latest Tweet on the game. It simply works and is beautiful in its simplicity.