Saturday, July 12, 2014
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Schuylkill 16 Poll Week 14: More ballot-box stuffing

There's big news a few spots below first-place Villanova, as La Salle has jumped over St. Joe's into fourth.

Schuylkill 16 Poll Week 14: More ballot-box stuffing

The headline of the post isn't actually about this week's rankings but about another poll relating to local college basketball.

The Washington Post's college basketball blog, Press Break, is running a knockout tournament in which fans vote on who they think is the best non-BCS coach in college hoops.

Among the first-round entrants are Fran Dunphy, who's paired against George Mason's Jim Larranaga, and Phil Martelli, who faces Butler's Brad Stevens.

Neither matchup is fair to the Big 5, but the former is especially nasty because of Mason's still-recent run to the Final Four and their large alumni base in the D.C. area.

Nonetheless, Dunphy doesn't trail Larranaga by that much, and voting closes tonight. So get to it.

One other blog post worth your attention: the Raleigh News and Observer's outstanding ACC Now reports there might be a public sale of tickets for this year's ACC Tournament. That has not happened since 1966.

The possibility of open seats is in part due to the fact that the tournament is being held at the Georgia Dome instead of a regular baskteball arena. But there is also a lack of demand at some schools, though the blog did not name names.

There was no public sale when the tournament was last played at the Georgia Dome in 2001, and that year the listed capacity was more than 4,000 seats bigger than this year's configuration.

Now for this week's rankings, and it's another Villanova sweep. But there's big news a few spots below the Wildcats, as La Salle has jumped over St. Joe's into fourth place after beating the Hawks at the Palestra for the second year in a row. But the Hawks remain ahead of Drexel. Do you believe there's a statute of limitations on head-to-head matchups?

Further down, Princeton falls back down after last week's big jump, while Penn rises above the Tigers thanks to their weekend sweep. Bucknell remains in 13th place, however, despite winning at Holy Cross.

As for the statistical side dish, we return to the Pomeroy rankings this week.

1. Villanova, 11 points (16)

- "I get this feeling Jay Wright had the banjo music from Deliverance stuck in his head after leaving Morgantown Friday." (Zach Klitzman)

It's not quite John Denver coming over the loudspeakers at the WVU Coliseum, is it?

2. Temple, 22 points (44)

"Owls take a huge step forward to one of the four all-important A-10 Tourney byes by beating the Hawks and Duquesne last week to go to 7-3. Bonnies and Fordham should be a cakewalk this week."

I presume they won't be yelling "Holy Schmidt!" at the Liacouras Center on Sunday.

3. Penn State, 36 points (76)

4. La Salle, 49 points (99)
- "Doormat no more - La Salle with the upset of the year in the Big 5. Giannini's finally earning his paycheck this year."

I'm just saying, but how much of an upset is it if it happens two years in a row like this?


5. Saint Joseph's, 51 points (93)
- "Comcast SportsNet paid tribute to all of the dunks laid on the Hawks by La Salle." (Rob Falcone)
- "St. Joe's lost a close game in the final minute? Not under Martelli!" (Patrick Carney)

6. Drexel, 62 points (135)
- "Seniors had a great game on Sunday. Bruiser for CAA Coach of the Year." (Rob Falcone)
- "I thought Drexel was supposed to come in last in the CAA? What's up with their 10-5 conference record?" (Zach Klitzman)

The Dragons have a legit shot at winning the regular season title. The preseason rankings really do look stupid at this point, don't they?

7. Rutgers, 84 points (137)
- "I have RU, despite losing 12 of their last 13, ahead of eight teams on my ballot. I think that tells you all you need to know about the field's year." (Jeff Shafer)

8. Rider, 92 points (171)

9. Delaware, 99 points (218)

- "Some games, they look incredible. Other games, not so much." (Rob Falcone)
- "Talk about un-American: Delaware beat the George Mason Patriots on Lincoln's Birthday." (Zach Klitzman)

I hear George Washington had a great crossover move. If only he was around for Karl Hobbs to recruit.

10. Lehigh, 108 points (227)
- "Apparently one of the nation's 10 weakest non-conference schedules failed to prepare the Engineers for the rigors of Patriot League play." (Jeff Shafer)
- "After losing to Navy and beating Army last week, Lehigh is getting ready to face the Merchant Marine Academy." (Zach Klitzman)

I expect to get some emails from Coast Guard fans about that one.


11. Penn, 116 points (233)
- "Glen Miller might still be in the doghouse - despite sweeping this past weekend - but Penn fans just need to relax and remember, at least they aren't Princeton." (Zach Kiltzman)

12. Princeton, 131 points (229)
- "Six straight losses to Brown. Let's repeat that. Six straight losses. To Brown." (Jeff Shafer)
- "As a Penn fan I couldn't have gotten a better Valentine's Day present than Princeton losing by 18 to Brown." (Zach Klitzman)

The top two freshmen in the Ivy League are from northern New Jersey and Philadelphia. Which one plays for Penn and which one plays for Princeton?

13. Bucknell, 141 points (285)


14. Lafayette, 155 points (306)
- "If Lafayette actually wants to move ahead in this poll, it'll have two great chances this weekend against Bucknell and Lehigh." (Zach Klitzman)

15. Delaware State, 165 points (310)

16. Monmouth, 174 points (317)

- "Still writing in 15. Kutztown and 16. Philadelphia U. Seriously considering bouncing Lafayette and bringing in Widener." (Tim AumAn)

If this keeps up, Ursinus will start getting votes.

I'll be back at around 7 p.m. tonight for live coverage of the Schuylill 16 showdown between Penn and Princeton from courtside at Jadwin Gym.

And yes, writing it that way seemed a little weird.

Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
About this blog
Soft Pretzel Logic is Philly.com's college sports blog, with a primary focus on the University of Pennsylvania. You'll also see coverage of the Big 5, other major college sports events in the region, and the annual Penn Relays track and field meet.

Reach Jonathan at jtannenwald@phillynews.com or 215-854-2330.

Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
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