Thursday, March 26, 2009

Philadelphia Media Gameday Links

The Villanova - Duke game has brought out another day of full coverage from Philadelphia's ink media sports section...

Mike Kern posts his game summary with keys to the game on his Philly Hoops Insider Blog. Kern penned a longer piece which focuses on both Duke and Villanova's growth in the past 3 weeks. Both squads are peaking it seems, at just the right time. Also from the PDN, Dick Jerardi gets Coach K's perspective on Villanova, even as the Duke Coach discusses the late season lineup changes that triggered the Blue Devil's late season surge (10-1). Moving freshman guard Elliot Williams into the starting lineup at the #2, shifting Jon Scheyer to the point and bringing in senior Greg Paulus off the bench gave Duke a 6th gear at the start of the game. Rich Hoffman uses the history of Coach Wright's hiring as the introduction for a piece on the money spent by the City 6 on men's basketball. While Hoffman only singled out Penn's expenditures (about 1/6 of that spent by Villanova) as lower because the Quakers do not give athletic scholarships, the side-by-side comparison suggests that the money gap may be reflected also with the on the court performance. Villanova has won 3 of the last 4 Big 5 titles. Publicity for Coach Wright is something of a mixed blessing at this point -- discussed on a number of fan boards this week as the Coaching Carousal takes the first few turns this off season -- as he appears on a variety of short lists (mostly fans).

The Inky's Joe Juliano writes about the striking similarity between the teams -- the style of play (I guess he has not checked out pace stats lately), the height similarities between positions and the lack of a "true center". Sports columnist Bob Ford, working another variation on the familiarity theme used yesterday, suggests that neither squad will be intimidated by the other's reputation or history.

The turnaround for the city's ink media is truly surprising. They even dispatched a photographer to chronicle yesterday's practice in Boston. Enjoy.

A bit off topic, but definitely worth a mention -- Roman Catholic's point guard Maalik Wayns, slated to start his freshman year at Villanova next fall, was named Pennsylvania's Player of the Year by the Philadelphia Daily News. Congratulations Maalik!

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