PRINCETON, N.J. - For the first time since the Reagan administration, the Ivy media have picked neither Penn nor Princeton to finish first in the League. Cornell is this season’s pick, and it is the first time it has not been one of the “Killer P’s” since Dartmouth was picked by the media in 1988-89.
The announcement came Wednesday afternoon from the Ivy League office. The voting consisted of two media members from each of the eight Ivy schools.
The Big Red garnered 119 poll points and 10 first-place votes. They are followed by Yale (104) and three-time defending champion Penn (97). Columbia (80), Brown (70), Harvard (43), Princeton (40) and Dartmouth (23) round out the predictions. Each of the top five teams received first-place votes.
The Big Red (16-12, 9-5 Ivy), third-place finishers a year ago, are loaded with young talent as they return eight of their top 10 scorers -- including the third-highest freshman scoring duo in the nation last year in second team All-Ivy point guard Louis Dale and 2007 Rookie of the Year Ryan Wittman. They also get back 2006 Ivy Rookie of the Year Adam Gore, who sat out all but one game last season with a knee injury, along with USC transfer Colin Robinson and seven-foot St. Bonaventure transfer Jeff Foote. Interestingly enough, Cornell was the last non-Penn/Princeton team to win an outright League title in 1987-88.
2006-07 League runner-up Yale (14-13, 10-4) was picked in the second position, as the Bulldogs rang in with 104 points and three first-place votes. Head Coach James Jones returns four of five starters including first team All-Ivy guard Eric Flato, who led Yale in scoring, assists, steals and three-point shooting. The Elis were the last team that was not Penn or Princeton to win a share of the League title, accomplishing that feat in 2001-02.
Penn (22-9, 13-1) has won the last three Ivy crowns and an impressive seven out of the last nine, but the loss of three starters -- including a pair of three-time All-Ivy selections in Mark Zoller and two-time Player of the Year Ibrahim Jaaber -- will have the second-year head coach Glen Miller and the Quakers leaning on their six-man freshman class for major contributions.
At Columbia (16-12, 7-7), coach Joe Jones returns everybody to a Lion squad that finished fourth last season. They will be led by first team All-Ivy forward John Baumann, who finished his junior campaign in the top ten in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage and three-point field goal percentage.
In Providence, second-year head man Craig Robinson looks to build on Brown's (11-18, 6-8) surprising fifth-place finish last season. They return first team All-Ivy guard Mark McAndrew, who lead all scorers in Ivy games last year.
Harvard (12-16, 5-9) and Princeton (11-17, 2-12) both look to new head coaches to guide their programs back to success. In Cambridge, former Michigan head man Tommy Amaker hopes to bring Harvard its program's first-ever Ivy League crown, while former Ivy League Player of the Year Sydney Johnson only six months removed from helping lead Georgetown to the Final Four as an assistant looks to return his alma mater to Ivy League dominance.
Dartmouth (9-18, 4-10) showed glimpses last year, and hope to build on a season that saw many of their key players hampered by injuries.
The Ivy basketball season kicks off Friday, November 9. For the complete 2007-08 Ivy League basketball composite schedule, be sure to check out www.IvyLeagueSports.com.
2007-08 Preseason Poll Results
1. Cornell -- 119 (10 first-place votes)
2. Yale -- 104 (3)
3. Penn -- 97 (1)
4. Columbia -- 80 (1)
5. Brown -- 70 (1)
6. Harvard -- 43
7. Princeton -- 40
8. Dartmouth -- 23