Quakers Get Back Into Ivy Play With Brown, Yale at Home

Penn Ivy Weekend #2 Game Notes in PDF Format

PHILADELPHIA - OK, it is finally all out of the way. With the calendar turning to February, the Penn men’s basketball team can enter the Ivy League portion of its schedule with no more distractions.

The Quakers got their 1,600th win.

Head Coach Fran Dunphy got his 300th win, something that will be acknowledged throughout the weekend, including a brief pregame ceremony prior to Saturday night's game with Yale.

Junior guard Ibrahim Jaaber became the program’s all-time leader in steals -- that’s right, as a junior.

The hype and the hoopla surrounding the 50th anniversary of the Philadelphia Big 5 is now a memory, albeit a fond one.

All that is left is Ancient Eight play -- you know, the stuff that really matters.

Game 17 - Penn vs. Brown (6-11, 2-2)
Friday, Feb. 3, 2006 • 7 p.m. EST
TV: None
Game 18 - Penn vs. Yale (11-8, 3-1)
Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006 • 7 p.m. EST
WXPN (88.5 FM) and www.pennathletics.com (Brian Seltzer, PBP; Vince Curran, analyst)

If the Quakers want to hold on to the championship trophy, the defense begins now. Penn ends the regular season with 12 Ivy League games, starting this weekend with Brown and Yale. These games are crucial to the Quakers’ success -- following this weekend, Penn hits the road for seven of the last 10 conference games.

The Quakers had been roaring along, winning seven of eight and putting some serious points on the board in its last four games. All that changed Saturday against Saint Joseph’s -- in a game that was a battle for the entire 40 minutes, Penn scored just 44 points, failed to hold a six-point lead down the stretch, and allowed the Hawks escape with a three-point win. The question, then, is how do the Quakers respond?

Brown comes to The Palestra with a 2-2 Ivy mark, having split its season series with Yale and splitting last weekend’s home games with Dartmouth and Harvard. Damon Huffman, last year’s Ivy League Rookie of the Year, leads the Bears with 10.3 points per game.

Yale entered the weekend with a 3-1 conference record, and pinned Harvard with its first Ivy loss last weekend in New Haven. The Bulldogs have three players averaging double figures in scoring -- Sam Kaplan (12.4 ppg), Dominick Martin (11.6) and Eric Flato (10.4). Martin was an honorable mention All-Ivy selection a year ago.

The Series with Brown
• Friday’s meeting between Penn and Brown represents the 109th; the Quakers hold a 90-18 lead in the series.

• Penn Head Coach Fran Dunphy is 26-6 against the Bears, including a 14-2 mark at The Palestra.

• Penn swept Brown last year, 83-60 in Philadelphia and 79-62 in Providence; the year before that, the Bears swept the Quakers (92-88 OT in Providence and 78-74 in Philadelphia).

The Series with Yale
• Saturday’s meeting between Penn and Yale represents the 203rd; the Quakers hold a 136-66 lead in the series, and have won eight in a row at The Palestra against the Bulldogs.

• Penn Head Coach Fran Dunphy is 24-9 against Yale, including a 14-2 mark at The Palestra.

• These teams split last year; Penn won the first game in Philadelphia, 65-41, but Yale pinned the Quakers with their only Ivy League loss, 78-60, in New Haven.

Trends We Like to See...
• Fran Dunphy is 158-26 (.859 win percentage) against the Ivy League since the beginning of the 1992-93 season.

• Since starting the 2003-04 Ivy campaign with two losses, Penn is 25-3 against the Ancient Eight.

• Penn is 90-9 at home against Ivy League teams dating back to the 1991-92 season.

• Penn is 2-0 in the Ivy League for the 11th time under Dunphy, and the second year in a row; the Quakers have been 3-0 under Dunphy 10 times, and 4-0 nine times.

• Penn entered the week 12th nationally in steals per game (10.1), 40th in fewest turnovers per game (13.0) and 48th in scoring defense (62.5 ppg allowed).

• Penn has won seven of its last nine games, with three of the wins coming on the road (Hawaii, BYU-Hawaii, The Citadel) and the four home wins coming by an average of 28.0 points.

• Penn’s average margin of victory in its last five wins is 29.4 points.

• Penn has a +8.44 turnover margin in its last nine games, committing 99 (11.0 per game) and forcing 175 (19.4).

• Penn has had 10 or more steals in six of the last nine games; in the last seven games, the Quakers are averaging 11.3 thefts.

• Penn’s assist/turnover ratio in the seven games prior to Saint Joseph’s was 1.58 (123 assists/78 turnovers); against the Hawks, the Quakers had six assists and nine turnovers.

• Penn had hit 63 three-pointers in the seven games prior to Saint Joseph’s (9.0 per game); against the Hawks, the Quakers went 3-of-19 beyond the arc.

Speaking Personnel-y...
• Junior forward Mark Zoller -- the Big 5 Player of the Week on Jan. 23 and an honorable mention All-Ivy pick last year -- has started the last 11 games and averaged 14.3 points and 6.5 rebounds in that stretch; he has scored in double figures in nine of the last 10 games, and had double-doubles against Fordham and Saint Joseph’s.

• In the seven wins during this most recent stretch, Eric Osmundson has scored 101 points (14.4 ppg); he has hit 21 of his last 51 three-point shots (.412 percentage).

• Sophomore guard Brian Grandieri -- who missed last season with an injury -- has 26 assists and just five turnovers in the last eight games, a staggering 5.20 ratio.

• Junior post player Steve Danley, an honorable mention All-Ivy pick a year ago, has had five-straight double-figure scoring games after going six games without reaching that mark; he is averaging 13.0 ppg in that span.

• Senior forward Friedrich Ebede, who has seen the first major minutes of his career this season, was averaging 6.3 rebounds per game in the four outings prior to Saint Joseph’s.

Stuff to “Jaaber” About...
Some things that, when you know them, make Ibrahim Jaaber a really fun player to watch...

• He has 54 steals this season, giving him 171 for his career which makes him the program’s all-time leader (did we mention he is a junior?). Last Wednesday vs. La Salle, he had five steals to surpass Jerome Allen as the program’s leader. Last year, Jaaber set Penn and Ivy League records for thefts in a season with 85 (2.93 per game).

•Hehad a 17-game streak of double-figure scoring games snapped when he scored nine points against Saint Joseph’s.

•He leads the conference in points (17.8) and steals (3.38) per game and has been the Ivy League Player of the Week three times (Jan. 15, Jan. 4, Dec. 3).

•He entered the week fourth in the country in steals per game (3.38).

•He is shooting .532 from the field and has been better than 50 percent in all but four games this season -- unusual for a guard!

Download: MBK Notes 17-18 (B-Y).pdf