PHILADELPHIA - The University of Pennsylvania's John R. Rockwell Head Coach of Men's Basketball, Glen Miller, has announced the Quakers captains for the 2006-07 season. They are seniors Steve Danley, Ibrahim Jaaber and Mark Zoller.
The announcement will not come as a surprise to Penn basketball fans -- all three players return as third-year starters and have been All-Ivy honorees each of the past two seasons while helping the Quakers win the last two Ivy League championships.
Steve Danley (Germantown, Md./DeMatha) has been an honorable mention All-Ivy selection the last two seasons, starting 56 of the 57 games he has played in that span (he did not start because of Senior Night at the end of the 2004-05 season, and missed a game last year due to injury). Last year, he averaged 8.9 points and 5.1 rebounds per game, and had the unusual situation of leading the team in assists (84) and blocked shots (25). Danley finished among the Ivy League leaders in assists per game and assist/turnover ratio.
Ibrahim Jaaber (Elizabeth, N.J./Peddie School), of course, was a unanimous pick for Ivy League Player of the Year in 2005-06 and was also a first-team All-Big 5 selection. A first-team All-Ivy pick last year and a second-time All-Ivy pick in 2004-05, he is vying to become the third Penn player and fifth overall to win Ivy Player of the Year two times. Jaaber has started all 58 games played by Penn the last two years, and led the Ivy League in scoring last year (18.2 ppg) and shot 52.5 percent from the field (190-of-362). His scoring average was the best by a Penn player since Hassan Duncombe in 1989-90 (19.1 ppg). At the other end, Jaaber broke his own Penn and Ivy League single-season steals records with 96, and finished fourth in the nation in steals per game (3.31). He enters the 2006-07 season needing 30 steals to become the Ivy League's all-time leader; he has 213 in his career. Harvard's Andrew Gellert hold the mark at 242. Jaaber enters this season with 1,026 points already in his career; he is the 33rd player in Penn history to pass the century mark.
Mark Zoller (Blue Bell, Pa./St. Joseph's Prep) is a good bet to join Jaaber and become the 34th player to score 1,000 points; he enters the 2006-07 season needing 136 points to reach the milestone. He has led Penn in rebounding each of the last two seasons, and averaged 7.3 caroms per game last year. Zoller was among the top seven in the Ivy League in seven different categories in 2005-06 (all games); in conference-only games, he led the way with 9.0 rebounds per game. He enters the 2006-07 season with 41 career double-figure scoring games and 15 double-doubles (including nine last year).
Penn -- which went 20-9 last year and won the Ivy title with a 12-2 mark -- opens the 2006-07 season Friday night, taking on UTEP in the first round of the Black Coaches Association (BCA) Invitational in Syracuse, N.Y. The Quakers will also play Saturday and Sunday in the event; the other teams participating include host Syracuse and St. Francis (N.Y.).