Is Villanova a Philly school?

It’s one of our favorite arguments of all time. Obviously the anti-Nova types think it’s a snobby college out on the Main Line, while I’d point out that Nova plays games at the Wells Fargo Center and continually recruits kids from within the city limits. They are a member of the Big Five and are closer to Philadelphia than “Philly guy” Mike Trout (Millville), so I think that has to count for something.

It’s always interesting to look through numbers revealing the prominence of each local team in a diverse college basketball town, and as such, the fine folks at the ticket marketplace Vivid Seats put together an interactive map that shows us the most popular team in each local area code, based on the sales numbers in their data bank:

Obviously Nova blue surrounds the city and dominates the region, though it’s a little surprising to see those swaths cutting into South Philly and the River Wards. Temple has a strong presence in and around campus, though there are a few really odd outliers, such as:

  • Notre Dame taking the top honors in zip code 19405, which is Bridgeport, between KOP and Norristown.
  • A portion of Delco that apparently likes Georgetown.
  • The Pitt Panthers owning a random part of Chester County.
  • The Logan/Ogontz/Fern Rock area buying Kentucky Wildcats tickets (???)

For some context, the map is based on ticket sales and excludes tournaments. It covers the entirety of the five metro Philadelphia counties, so that’s the city limits, plus Delco, Chesco, Montco, and Bucks. Per Vivid Seats, Penn actually ranked third, beating out St. Joe’s, Drexel, and La Salle.

This is something to chew on from a specific data set. I’m not surprised Villanova is represented in this way, but it is intriguing to see how far the Wildcats penetrate into the city.