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  • As college football attendance drops nationwide, Penn gets creative to keep fans coming

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    It's never exciting to play at home in front of an empty stadium.

    Overall, college football has seen a steady decline in game attendance, and Penn is all too familiar with this issue.

    For the seventh time in eight yummer's departure.After helping the Blues win the Europa League in May, the influential playmaker made a £150million switch to the Bernabeu just a few days later.Hazard said, "When he finished the World Cup in Russia I wanted to go to Madrid, I had ears, national college football attendance has fallen. While 41,856 seems like a large number, this marks an all-time low since 1996 for average college football attendance among all 129 FBS programs last season.

    “Traditionally, we see spikes in student attendance for the first game of the season — a game that coincides with Family Weekend — and Homecoming," said Mike Honeywell, Penn's director of ticket sales & service. "Overall, attendance is traditionally higher in years where Princeton travels to Franklin Field."

    During the 2018 season, the Red and Blue only surpassed the 10,000-fan mark twice. These were games against and , which had 10,126 and 13,224 fans, respectively.

    For the rivalry game, only 7,756 people filed into the stands. This marks a stark decline from 2017's Penn-Princeton game, where 9,073 fans attended.

    While Penn placed second in the Ivy League — behind only Harvard — at an average of 7,768 people per home game, the national champion Clemson Tigers averaged a whopping 80,400 people per home game at Death Valley.

    In 2016 — the last time Penn football won a title — the average home game attendance was 5,560 people per game, which marked the third lowest weekly attendance in the Ancient Eight. Even in a year, when the Quakers were able to win a title, they still struggled to fill the stadium.

    This could be due in part to Ivy League rules, which stipulate that teams can only play 10 games each season. Clemson and Alabama each played 150% of the games Penn did last season. While was initiated to lower the risk of concussions, it also leaves fans fewer opportunities to make it out to games.

    In 2009, the Red and Blue averaged 10,600 people per game, which placed them third among Ivies behind Harvard and Yale. The title-winning Alabama Crimson Tide averaged 92,012 people per game that same year.

    During the rivalry game of Penn-Princeton in 2009, 14,027 fans showed up to Franklin Field —a sharp increase from recent years.

    In the last decade, Penn football has seen a drop of about 3,000 fans per game. While the average for the Red and Blue in 2009 was about 10,000 fans per game, they only surpassed that number twice last season.

    Another issue for the Quakers and the Ivy League is the lack of postseason play. The Ivy League has a rule in place that doesn’t allow for college playoffs, so an Ivy League squad's season finishes with the end of the regular season.

    Without a higher goal than the League title to play for, it may be harder to draw a large crowd, especially for teams who are eliminated early from contention. It's tough for the casual fan with no tie to the University to be interested in the Quakers with no chance of seeing the team compete beyond Thanksgiving.

    One way the football program is testing attendance levels is by experimenting with different start times for the games.

    “Over the past two seasons, we have also taken a deeper look into how kickoff times impact our attendance numbers," Honeywell said. “Our data shows that Penn footbalnter Milan boss Antonio Conte insists he's not panicking over their slow market.Conte is upset over Inter's failure to sign Roma striker Edin Dzeko or Manchester United's Romelu Lukaku.But he says, “I didn't have to be reassured.“The President, dl games draw better at two times in particular: Friday nights and Saturdays at 1 p.m. With this in mind, our kickoff times this season are all set for either 1 p.m. or 1:30 p.m. on Saturdays, with the exception of the Dartmouth game on Friday night."

    Additionally, this trend is somewhat due to the rise of sports media. While attendance at games has been down, television ratings are stronger than ever; many fans don’t see the benefit of going to a game when they could watch it from the comfort of their own home.

    Another issue for the Red and Blue is the lack of fans showing up to multiple games in a season. The football program is trying out new programs this season like multi-game ticket packages in order to entice fans to show up to games.

    “Historical data has shown that we have a number of fans that attend multiple football games [but] do not buy season tickets," Honeywell said. “With this in mind, we created the Red [and] Blue package, an option which bundles the Sacred Heart and Cornell games together at a discounted rate. This allows our fans to attend both Homecoming and one additional game at a more affordable rate, which should hopefully boost attendance for bnzema back to the club.Juninho wants Benzema to end his career back with his former club.He explained, "My wish is to propose to Karim to finish his career in Lyon. "He is from here, he feels from here. Why not make an economic effort between both paoth games."

    Even though nationwide college football attendance is dropping, Penn is determined to find innovative ways to draw fans to Franklin Field.

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  • Penn men's basketball edges George Mason in season opener, loses Betley to injury

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    Basketball season is back, and it didn’t take long for there to be a lot of drama.

    In a thrilling season opener that came down to the final seconds, Penn men’s basketball took down George Mason, 72-71. Even with the win, the biggest story of the night, however, was an injury to junior guard Ryan Betley.

    Just five minutes into the first half, Betley went down awkwardly on the baseline. His teammates immediately signaled for medical staff to come over, and he remained on the ground for several minutes. He was eventually helped off the court by teammates.

    He returned to the bench in the middle of the second half with a crutch and large brace on his righld Unghing up a raid on the French transfer market.Marca says Real are already looking at young talents who are standing out this season.First on the list is midfielder Eduardo Camavinga, who is already featuring for Rennes at 16 years of age.After makingited's promotion.Warnock was asked on Friday whether he would be getting a season ticket for the Blades."No. I did message Chris. It's a tremendous achievement I think everybody thought they'd fall by the wayside," he said. "They showed tremendot leg. On Wednesday, Betley announced on Twitter that the injury was a ruptured patellar tendon that would require surgery and keep him out for the remainder of the season.

    "It's not good. It's just aWilfried Zaha.The Arsenal-news-Wilfried-Zaha-Ryan-Fraser-transfer-target">Daily StarArsenal-news-Wilfried-Zaha-Ryan-Fraser-transfer-target"> says Gunners boss Unai Emery remains adamant that adding pace on the flanks is the most effective use of his hard part of this game. He puts [in] so much effort, wanted to have a great year, and it's just probably not going to happen," coach Steve Donahue said. "The only silver lining on this — it's the first game of the year. He doesn't lose a year of eligibility."

    "We always can rally. You know we're a family. I can't mention it enough — we're big on family," senior guard Antonio Woods said. "When one of our brothers goes down, we have to pick each other up, next guy steps up."

    In his absence, several players stepped up for the Quakers. For most of the first half, it was freshman forward Michael Wang who served as the three-point specialist. In his first collegiate game, Wang knocked down four treys and amassed 14 points, all of which came in the first half.

    "We've seen signs of it, but you never know when the lights are on exactly what he's going to do," Donahue said about Wang.

    After leading for much of the first 20 minutes, though, the Quakers saw their lead slip away. A series of fouls allowed the Patriots to push ahead and finish the half leading 37-33.

    The Patriots continued that strong run of play in the second half, stretching the lead to nine points. But the Quakers slowly began chipping away, with their comeback led by junior forward AJ Brodeur, who finished the game with a team-high 19 points. A layup from junior guard Devon Goodman brought the score within one with eight minutes left.

    That’s when senior guard Antonio Woods took over. He spent the first 13 minutes of the half on the bench with four fouls, but once he checked back in, he scored at will. In a two minute stretch, he scored eight straight points for the Quakers, all of which came while attacking the rim. Even so, the Patriots kept pace.

    "We rested him to the eight [minute timeout], that was our plan when you have four fouls. I love that he had the initiative to come in, and I think he felt that we needed something," Donahue said about Woods.

    The Quakers finally struck through with 2:17 left to play. A defensive stand, followed by a layup from Brodeur, gave the Quakers the lead for the first time since before the end of the first half.

    At that point, the game bounced back and forth. George Mason’s Otis Livingston II made a jump shot, and the Patriots added a bucket on a free throw. However, Woods once again came through to tie the game with just over a minute left.

    And that’s when Penn’s defense went into lockdown mode. The Quakers forced two consecutive misses, and Brodeur made one key free throw to put Penn up for good.

    Penn had plenty of chances to put the game away, but Woods and Brodeur combined to go 1 for 6 from the line in the final minute. An offensive rebound off a missed free throw gave the Quakers an extra chance to ice the game, but they came up empty at the line once again.

    "I feel like it was first game jitters," Woods said. "[It was] a great atmosphere, we just kind of took our mind off it."

    With just six seconds left, the Patriots had their last chance. They grabbed the ball off of Woods’ last miss and moved the ball quickly up the court, but the last-second shot came up short.

    The resiliency of the Quakers was on full display tonight. Ten different players scored a bucket, and the team refused to quit even when confronted with injuries and foul trouble. The team's perseverance will be especially important as the team moves on without one of its best players.

    This story was updated at 8:20 p.m. on Wednesday after Ryan Betley announced his injury on Twitter.

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  • Papazekos | The Red and Blue should beat Princeton in the biggest game of the season

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    They stumbled out of the gate, but Penn women’s basketball is exactly what we thought they were: a team that should win the Ivy title.

    Coach Mike McLaughlin has lead his team to back-to-back conference titles, including last year’s triumph at the inaugural Ivy Tournament. This year, the gapRooney has questioned Manchester United's pursuit of Real Madrid star Gareth Bale.United's all-time leading goalscorer has told his former club to ignore the enticement of a big named signing like Bale or Cristiano Ronaldo to focus on rebuilding the between Penn and the rest of the league has closed – or at least, the gap between Penn and Princeton has. Want proof? , the next closest team behind Penn and Princeton, is now two games back after two straight blowout losses to those two teams.

    runner-up, Princeton shocked the Red and Blue in their conference opener last month by a . It was the worst possible start to Ivy play for Penn, one that meant they had to work themselves back to the top of the league the hard way. Now, after three straight Ivy weekend sweeps, Penn finds itself in a tie for first in the confered with Atalanta striker Duvan Zapata.United are in the market for a new forward ahead of the January market.And Calciomercato says Zapata has caught their eye.The Colombia striker scored 28 goals and had eight assists in a total of 48 games last seaence with the only team they have yet to beat.

    Since that loss to Princeton, Penn has won nine straight, including two clinching wins over Villanova and Temple. Of those nine, only the two-point was within 15 points – that’s right, Penn has won eight of its last nine, including six Ivy and one Big 5 matchups – by a margin of 15 or more.

    So what’s the lesson?

    First of all, not to panic. One loss in the Ivy League is anything but a death sentence; both of the last two years Penn has won it all with a one-loss record. Even if the Quakers drop another game, the Ivy Tournament and the home court advantage it provides make perfection less of a necessity.

    That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be strived for or even achieved. Penn has the talent to go perfect in the conference, fluky opening losses notwithstanding. This team has high standards: like last year, the goal shouldn’t be to qualify for the tournament, or even to win it. The Quakers should strive to : win both the regular season and tournament conference titles. And, optimistically, to win a game even after that.

    The second lesson from Penn’s recent run of play is that the Quakers are who we thought they were. They didn’t always show it early in the season, but this is a good basketball team by any standard. They have the best frontcourt in the conference in reigning Ivy Player of the Year Michelle Nwokedi and presumptive Ivy Rookie of the Year . They have one of the better defenses in the country (the Quakers are 27th nationally in points allowed per game), a great stable of guards, and a coach who has been there and done that.

    Princeton is a good team, too, which is why Tuesday’s game will be so fun to watch. The Tigers are just as good, if not better, defensively. They have one of the better players in the league in Bela Alarie, and when their three ball is on like it was in January, they are nigh unstoppable.

    While it will be just the eighth conference game of the season for both these teams, Tuesday’s game will likely decide the league. The top seed is up for grabs.

    It will be low-scoring, physical, and spirited in Jadwin Gym. Here’s what it comes down to: who wins tChelsea boss Frank Lampard is reluctant to talk up their title chances after moving into third place.The Blues are eight points behind leaders Liverpool."It's nice to be above City, because I've got huge respect for them," Lampard said after victory he guard matchups? How will seniors Anna Ross and Lauren Whitlatch match-up against Princeton’s Gabrielle Rush’s sharpshooting and Alarie’s versatility? Down low, will Penn win on the glass and prevent the Tigers’ Leslie Robinson from racking up easy buckets?

    I think the Quakers win those matchups. As McLaughlin put it, “We’re better than we were then [in January].”

    The Quakers are better than they were in January and certainly better than they were on January 6th. Nwokedi and Parker are more comfortable playing off each other, as Nwokedi’s 30-point outburst on Saturday proved. Junior Ashely Russell’s role as the gritty defender has come into focus. Three-point shooting is up too.

    Penn should win this game.

    Because they are who we think they are.

    is a College sophomore from Pittsburgh, Pa., and is a Sports Editor for The Daily Pennsylvanian. He can be reached at papazekos@thedp.com.

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  • Penn men's basketball beats Brown, 95-90 in overtime thriller

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    It took a full 40-minute effort, and then some.

    But in one of the most exciting Penn men’s basketball games in a season full of them, the Quakers came back and then held on late to beat Brown 95-90 in overtime.

    The Quakers (14-6, 4-0 Ivy) were led with massive performances from guards Antonio Woods and Caleb Wood. Both hit big threes from all over the court – first to bring Penn back ibeing linked with the Rossonero.“I think so, I've worked for it," he told Tuttomercatoweb when asked if he was ready for a move to Europe.“I'd like to test myself in Europe with international players so I can learn and grow, both as a man and as nto the game, then to put them ahead.

    With the game on the line down the stretch, and the referees calling fouls at seemingly every contact (much to the anger of the Palestra crowd), the fate of the game was decided at the charity stripe.

    Brown (9-9, 2-3) was in the double bonus less than ten minutes into the second half, but it was the Quakers that found themselves at the line most often. Penn finished the game with a whopping 44 free throws, making 30 – just enough to edge them across the finish line.

    Meanwhile, Brown failed to take advantage of their big opportunity at the line, which came with fifteen seconds left in overtime with the ball in the hands of their best player. Freshman Desmond Cambridge, who finished with 29 hard-earned points, missed both attempts, squandering a chance to tie the game late.

    The large number of calls lead to foul trouble for both teams. Both Foreman and forward Max Rothschild were among those forced to sit for Penn. In all, four players fouled out, including Foreman and Cambridge.

    Cambridge carried Brown for large stretches of the game. In the opening five minutaco midfielder Youri Tielemans.The Sun says City are chasing £40m-rated Tielemans, 22, as they plan for life without Spanish maestro David Silva.City have already made contact with Tielemans' people.Monaco's Belgian international has been starring oes, the guard made several contested shots, leading to a 12-2 run that put the Bears up 15-6 just minutes into the game.

    “We had the benefit of watching the tape, and [Cambridge], he takes hard [shots],” Donahue said. “I think Antonio is one of the better defenders, if not the best on-ball defender in this league. I thought Cambridge surprised him at first, got it going and then made harder ones. I really didn’t think we let our guard down on that kid.”

    If Woods’ defensive effort failed to stop Cambridge from scoring, the junior’s offensive output almost matched his. Woods finished with 21 points on the night, including four three-pointers.

    The biggest three – in terms of distance if not importance – came in the first half. With seven seconds left after a Brown bucket, senior Darnell Foreman drove the court, dishing to a wide-open Woods trailing the play. Woods stepped up and calmly sunk the thirty-footer at the buzzer to pull within one.

    “Anytime you can score before the clock runs out, a buzzer-beater, it gives you a sense of momentum going into the half. I think we came out in the second half with a lot of energy, a lot of poise, and I think it showed,” Woods said.

    Unlike the first half, when Penn trailed by as much as nine, the second half was much closea.The midfielder's deal has been terminated by mutual consent and he is now a free agent."Last summer the directors told me to look for another club, since I was no longer part of their plans," he told Globo Esporte.“It was towards the end of the mr. Brown continued to lead the majority of the time, but the lead was one or two points. Penn struggled defensively to contain Brown’s guards, and on the interior against Bears driving the paint.

    Offensively, Penn’s lack of consistency was largely an effect of the turnovers they coughed up. The Quakers struggled at times offensively, forcing passes into tight windows. In a departure from the beginning of the season, it was the forwards who turned the ball over.

    Caleb Wood was there off the bench when the Red and Blue needed an offensive spark. The 6-foot-three guard finished with four triples of his own for 22 points.

    “Wood came off the bench and was terrific on some cuts and made big plays,” Donahue said. “They were game planning us a certain way, and Caleb Wood kind of messes that up a little bit … So I thought that got [Brown] on their heels a little bit.”

    Brown led for most of the game, but when it came down to it in the final minutes and in overtime, Penn’s free throw shooting and clutch defense were enough to overcome Cambridge’s hot shooting.

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  • Penn sprint football's Tracey Woods anchors defense despite inexperience

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    Penn sprint football wrapped up its fourth consecutive win to start the season this past weekend to head into an bye week still undefeated.

    Of the multitude of players who have raised their game this season, junior defensive back Tracey Woods has stood out as one of the most improved players on the roster. If Woods seems like a new face, it’s because he is only in his first year with the Quakers. In fact, he hadn’t played football at all for the last six years.

    Through four games, Woods has four pass breakups and one interception to go along with 10.5 total tackles. Looking at the how the defense has done this year as a whole also shows Woods’ importance to the team.

    Penn’s defense has allowed only four passing touchdowns through its first four games, wAston Villa defender Tyrone Mings will make his England debut against Bulgaria on Monday night.The 26-year-old has been impressive form this season.Gareth Southgate will use to centre-back to replace Michael Keane. The Everton defender delivered another poor display in Friday's loss to Czech Republic.hile picking off the opposing quarterback a noteworthy 13 times. This secondary is not just opportunistic though — they have proven capable of shutting down the opposing team’s passing attack each week by only a Vardy.Elder left the King Power Stadium in the summer to sign a three-year contract with the Tigers.Elder reckons that both Bowen and Vardy possess similar qualities which makes them both clinical in front of goal."I've said it to a lot of lads, a lllowing 5.5 yards per passing play. For contrast, Penn’s offense has averaged 10.1 yards per passing play this season.

    Though it may seem like a surprise that one of the team’s top players played his last football game before this season six years ago, Woods’ childhood experience with the sport and dedication to re-learning the game this offseason paved the way for the his successful season thus far.

    Woods’ football career began when he was just in elementary school, but by the time he reached high school, he began to develop interests in other sports, joining the cross country and bowling teams for St. Augustine High School in New Orleans. Though he was no longer playing organized football, his love for the sport never dwindled. Woods admitted that quitting football was a regrettable decision.

    “In hindsight, it wasn’t the best choice,” he said, “because every every year I didn’t play I just missed being on the field, and it’s not really something you can just recreate in a pickup game.”

    Joining the sprint football team this year allowed Woods to finally get the feeling back that he had lacked since before high school.

    Picking up a sport after a six-year layoff is not an easy task. To further complicate matters, Woods was also making the transition from wide receiver to cornerback. The difference between focusing on the quarterback, as he had learned as a wide receiver, and staying with his man as a cornerback was hard at first, and Woods will be the first to tell you that duringreturn to Chelsea.Obi is happy Frank Lampard is now in the Stamford Bridge hotseat. He was alongside Lampard in midfield for every minute at the Allianz Arena when Chelsea shocked Bayern Munich in the 2012 Champions League final - sharing the dressin the spring, he struggled at practice.

    “I was used to playing receiver and having the ball thrown at me,” he said. “So now I’m here at practice paying attention to the quarterback rather than the guy I’m supposed to be covering and just blowing coverage in every rep.”

    Over the summer he studied defensive footwork and technique, learning how to read a receiver’s hips, how to play both man and zone coverage and bait the quarterback into a risky pass. When it came time for preseason practices in August, Woods was a whole new player, ready to take on the daunting task of a starting cornerback role.

    Woods has been around successful football teams before. As a senior in high school, his school’s team featured current LSU superstar Leonard Fournette, who led the team to an 8-1 regular season. Though Woods was not a member of the team, he still felt the energy such a successful season was able to bring to the school, and for Penn sprint football that same type of energy is currently there.

    “This whole year the coaching staff has been saying this is a special team,” he said, “and now it’s time for us to finish it.”

    With a 4-0 record, big wins over Navy and Army, and only three games left on the schedule, this could be the year they do secure the title, on the back of Woods and the defense’s strong play.

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  • Higgins | Most wonderful time of the year for Penn Athletics

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    The date was April 13, 2014.

    Those of you with keen memories will remember this day as the Sunday of last year’s Fling weekend. For most of Penn’s student body, this particular Sunday is spent in various states of detoxification, paying homage to Gatorade, Advil and greasy bacon-egg-and-cheese sandwiches after a week’s worth of debauchery.

    But on that Sunday, I found myself sitting at Penn Park, under a clear Philadelphia sky watching the softball team slug its way through a doubleheader with Cornell. The Quakers captured wins in both of the afternoon’s games, scoring nine to the Big Red’s eight in each game.

    The numbers on the scoreboard are beside the point, though. Because it was there, sitting in the plastic stadium chairs at the softball diamond in Penn Park on that Sunday that it struck me: Penn students have no good reason not to attend the University’s spring sporting functions.

    Granted, there are those pesky things called problem sets, midterms and papers. But there is also this little thing called procrastination. And we all know that when the sun comes out from its winter hibernation, our inclination to complete work drops with every increasing degree of Fahrenheit. By the time the thermometer reaches the upper sixties, all bets at productivity are off.

    Plus, Penn’s roster of spring sports teams is good. Like, really good. The 13 teams competing in the spring have the potential to scoop up the most Ivy titles for Penn of any season of athletics.

    With a 7-1 conference record, baseball is off to its most explosive offensive start in program history with only one loss in the Ancient Eight — to Dartmouth, the Red Rolfe Division’s reigning champion. Last weekend, the team notched 13 home runs and 52 runs in four games. That’s almost madness.

    Softball is a perennial contender for the Ivy League crown, and this year is hardly different. With sluggers like junior Lauren Li and freshman Jurie Joyner — the Ancient Eight’s current Rookie of the Week — batting above .400, the action on the diamond won’t disappoint.

    Men’s lacrosse won the program’s first-ever program Ivy title in 2014, and despite a slow start to 2015 due to troubles in goal, the Quakers are finally translating their spurts of success on different parts of the field into wins.

    Women’s lacrosse, on the other hand, is nothing short of a dynasty. The Quakers have been absolutely destroying their opponents this year, with their only losses coming against No. 1 Maryland and No. 6 Northwestern.

    And did I mention that they have won the Ivy title for the last eight consecutive years?

    Men’s tennis to stick with his front three combination after victory at Tottenham.After the front three of Abraham, Mason Mount and Willian tormented Spurs all afternoon, the towering frontman loves the flexibility he and his team-mates are showing… even if it hit its way to its highest Intercollegiate Tennis Association ranking in program history — No. 39 — back in February. Although the team’s 0-3 Ivy record may not seem impressive, the lack of wins does not account for the strength of schedule, as the Ancient Eight features some of the stiffest competition in the nation.

    And if you must pick one spring sports team to support, at the very least root for track. Seriously, if you had to pick one sporting event to attend for the rest of the year between now and graduation, it would be Penn Relays from April 23 to 25.changed to to Not that you should really need a reason to see Franklin Field full for the only time all year, but the meet is the biggest track meet not just in the nation, but in the world. And it’s Penn Relays!

    As an athlete myself, I can attest to justignoring him and his teammates for awards in recent seasons.City have won the Premier League title three times in the last six seasons but none of their players have been crowned PFA Player of the Year. Sterling, who was named PFA Young Player of the how great it feels to see your friends, or really just anyone between the ages r City boss Pep Guardiola admitted his was very happy to leave Everton with a victory.A notoriously tough venue for top teams in recent years, the City boss was happy to tick this game off this season's fixture list.“In the first half, we started wof 18 and 23, in the stands supporting the Red and the Blue. Calling it ‘warm and fuzzy’ might be a little too far, but getting even just the slightest bit of recognition for all of the hours you spend on the field, in the pool, on the courtsoc or in the weight room is nothing short of gratifying.

    So go for for your friends, for your peers, for your resentment that Penn is not a school where sporting events are a campus-wide ordeals. But really, just go.

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  • Three up, three down: Penn women's soccer ends nonconference slate

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    After a draw against Yale, Penn women’s soccer closes out its nonconference slate against Lehigh on Tuesday. Here’s what’s up and what’s down as the Quakers (5-5-3) take on the Mountain Hawks (4-5-5).

    To be frank, she is on fire. In Penn’s last five matches, the freshman forward has scored three of the Red and Blue’s four goals, including game winners against CoJoel Matip hopes he can continue scoring goals for Liverpool.The centre-back was a surprising figure to open the scoring for the Reds in Saturday's 3-1 win over Arsenal.Matip told the club's website: "I want to score more goals and it's nice that I could score, but it's early in the season and there's still a lot to increase. "Maybe I'll get the opportunity to score a few more."lumbia and Loyola (Md.). Last weekend, Provini provided the equalizer in the Quakers’ 1-1 tie with Yale. She currently leads Penn in scoring with seven points on the season.

    Tuesday’s match against Lehigh marks the Quakers last nonconference tilt of the 2014 season. This means that Penn has one last chance to work out its kinks before it faces its final two Ivy foes: Brown and Princeton. If the Red and Blue can pull out a win against the Mountain Hawks, they might just give the team enough momentum to finish the season with a 3-3-1 conference record.

    This season, Penn’s 10 goals have been netted by seven players. Of those seven, just two are upperclassmen — senior back Haley Cooper and senior midfielder Kaitlyn Moore. Sophomores Ana Chevtchenko and Lindsey Sawczuk and freshmen Provini, Anna Estep and Kristen Miller are responsible for the rest of the Quakers’ goals. As the team has gotten deeper into the season, a core group of freshmen and sophomores — players that will likely be the backbone of the team in the years to come — have dominated Penn’s presence in the opposing third. This is good news for the future of the team, both for the last three games of this season and for the long-term success of the women’s soccer program at Penn.

    In Penn’s last nine matches, seven have been decided by one goal or fewer. Thus, it is clear that the Red and Blue are battling through every game. But it seems like they can’t quite make the tables turn in their favor. That is not to say that the Quakers have not had close calls and near misses — in Penn’s last game against Yale on Saturday, junior midfielder Erin Mikolai’s would-be game-winner deflected off the crossbar with three minutes remaining in overtime.

    With a current Ivy record of 1-3-1, Penn is sitting at seventh place in the Ancient Eight — definitely not a mark that the team was hoping for back in August. With so little left of the season, it is unlikely that the Quakers will be able to finish much higher than the middle pack. Yes, the team is young. Yes, the team is injury-ridden. But this year’s performance has been disappointing.

    Ultimately, it won’t matter whether or not the Red and Blue can pull off a victory over the nonconference Mountain Hawks on Tuesday because their fate within the to the club's academy coaches.Rashford has been speaking to Inside United magazine about what makes the United academy so special.He said, “The coaches are very good and they're almost doing, maybe, 12 years of developing an individual.“And in thIvy League is all but sealed. Even if Penn defeats Brown and Princeton in the coming weeks, a top-three league finish is already out of the question. Unfortunately for the Quakee on Anfield - placed on the stadium by a witchdoctor.Grobbelaar, known for his lively character and fiery personality, opened up on a secret prior to Liverpool's Premier League clash with Watford on Saturday lunchtime.The 62-year-old recounted a stors, this year’s performance is not quite up to snuff with coach Darren Ambrose’s expectation of success, which he defined back in August as perennially finishing at the top of the conference.

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  • No place to call home

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    Off on the corner of 34th and Walnut sits Hill College House, where no freshman wants to live, let alone a sophomore. Nobody, that is, except for Max Polkinhorne.

    This sophomore transfer from Santa Clara, Calif., who joined the men’s soccer team when he arrived at Penn, opted to join an all-transfer hall in Hill. This little community is more meaningful than meets the eye.

    Right next door is field hockey sophomore transfer Katelynn Mudgett. These two found each other when neither could go to the Transfer Students’ Organization night events due to their sports.

    “He and I had this conversation one day,” Mudgett said. “And he said, ‘Why did you pick to live in Hill?’ and I was like, ‘I didn’t pick to live here.’ And he said, ‘I did.’ And I was like, ‘And did it say there was air conditioning on the website?’ and he was like, ‘No,’ and I said, ‘And is there air conditioning?’ ‘No.’”

    Even without air conditioning, this hall in Hill is a safe haven for transfer students.

    While Polkinhorne and Mudgett weren’t able to go out with the other transfers, they had a safety blanket by being part of a team, as do most transfer athletes. They had the fortune of jumping into a new family upon arrival at Penn.

    In coming to West Philadelphia, transfers walk a fine line between being freshmen and “normal” sophomores and juniors.

    Three years ago, graduate Maggie Ercolani and senior Kim Gordon founded the Transfer Students’ Organization and began programming during NSO in 2011. Before this, nothing was in place to help transfers transition into Penn and distinguish them from freshmen.

    But make no mistake, even with all of the support now in place, transferring is scary for everyone.

    The risk is big, but the payoff is even greater.

    Max Polkinhorne wanted to come to Penn. He just had to figure out how.

    “The reason I was looking Ivy initially was for the academics,” Polkinhorne said. “I definitely used soccer to get into the Ivies.”

    Originally, the California native was looking to play in the Ancient Eight, but unfortunately, it didn’t work out.

    “It was a bad recruitment year,” he said. “Most of my top schools were full or had goalkeepers recruited already for freshman year, so I just ended up not getting into my top schools that I was looking at.”

    While he didn’t go into Santa Clara knowing he wanted to transfer, it did not take long for Polkinhorne to realize he wasn’t happy.

    In searching for a home, both academics and soccer factored into the then-freshman’s decision.

    Ultimately, it was then-sophomore goalkeeper Max Kurtzman’s departure from the team that created a hole in the Quakers’ roster.

    “These guys kind of contacted me halfway through the season because they lost a goalkeeper,” Polkinhorne said. “They were looking for a transfer goalkeeper kind of late in the year and so they knew that I was looking.”

    When Polkinhorne arrived at Penn though, he not only found a place of the team, but a friend.

    Polkinhorne’s next door neighbor Mudgett transferred from Brown to be in Wharton.

    Originally, she had chosen Brown over Harvard for the business-tailored educational opportunity.

    But Brown didn’t have a Wharton, and that was what Mudgett was looking for.

    In late May, when Mudgett got into Penn, she faced a dilemma. She hadn’t been able to talk to coach Colleen Fink because she was not officially released from Brown field hockey, as per Ivy rules.

    “Since I hadn’t been able to talk to the UPenn coach, I said, ‘Okay, now I’m taking a risk, if I go to Penn am I going to be able to play field hockey there or not?’” she said.

    When she decided to leave the Bears and join the Quakers, Mudgett told her che Gunners are not looking to sell too many players this month.Reports had suggested Arteta may have to sell players if he wanted to secure permanent signings.But the Spaniard refuted such suggestions and said they are not looking to sell anyone thisoach she wouldn’t be back and immediately reached out to Fink to ask if she could play for the Red and Blue. The answer was yes, and the risk paid off for Mudgett.

    Though transferring within the Ivy League is rare, for Mudgett, it was a comfort to be playing at a similar level of competition. Playing against her former teammates was a strange experience, but she did what was right for her education.

    “I was just thinking about academics, what was the best thing I could do for myself?” Mudgett said. “And it was Wharton.”

    Thanks to the Ivy League’s shorter spring season, staying within the Ancient Eight was important to Mudgett.

    And in time, the decision paid off.

    “I am going to a conference in Qatar,” Mudgett said. “And I just had an interview yesterday with the Philadelphia Eagles about an internship, which are opportunities I never would have been able to have at Brown.”

    Fifth-year senior quarterback Ryan Becker had a different road to West Philadelphia.

    Becker was all set to come to Penn out of high school, but due to financial issues, he had to put off his trip to Philadelphia.

    “There was the option of staying at home and working and getting some money, but I really wanted to stay in school and stay in football,” Becker said. “So I went to Florida State and walked on there and got the great opportunity to learn there. Then, once we were able to work the financial aid out, I was able to come to Penn.”

    Like most transfers, the transition process had some bumps, but Becker’s year at FSU helped ease the change.

    “It probably made my adjustment to Penn easier by seeing a little bit of college ahead of time even though it wasn’t as difficult as Penn academically,” he said.

    But academics were where the biggest struggle took place. Even with the year at FSU, Becker wasn’t prepared for the jump.

    Beyond academics, there are other struggles that come along with not entering as a traditional freshman.

    “You lose the experience of having a freshman class where you live in the dorms,” Becker said. “You do NSO and different events with freshmen so you don’t really have a class … [and] I personally was impacted by that.”

    Transfer athletes do have the added advantage of coming into a new school but with a whole team to meet and become a part of, where as the average transfer is really on his or her own.

    However, it is easy to get stuck only fraternizing with the teadate for the vacant Middlesbrough job.Terry has spent this season as assistant to Dean Smith at Aston Villa.The pair have helped guide Villa to the Championship play-off final.TalkSPORT says while Terry isn't one of the favourites for the job, he hasm. Becker chose to broaden his horizons by joining a fraternity.

    Though he had a great experience in his year at FSU, when considering academics, social realms and football, it was the academic strength of Penn that pulled Becker to the University — a running trend in transfer athletes.

    “The opportunity to come to Penn — the degree,” Becker said. “There were thoughts staying, thoughts going back, but overall, the degree kept me here, and it was just too great an opportunity to pass up.”

    Financial struggles are not unique to Becker’s transfer experience. Penn is well-known for its plentiful amounts of financial aid — a big factor in students’ decision to apply to be a part of the Red and Blue.

    Veronica Jones transferred as a junior this fall from Virginia. Coming from a top-20 team in women’s crew, Jones made the decision to leave the Cavaliers and join the Red and Blue because of academic and financial issues.

    Last year, Jones’ financial situation changed, making it harder to pay for school at UVA.

    “My coach told me that he wouldn’t give me any more athletic scholarship because there were too many people that he was recruiting for the next year,” Jones said. “So I started contacting other schools — Columbia and Penn and UNC.”

    Though it started as a financial issue, Jones also came to the realization that her life post-college would not center around rowing, despite her spot in the top 14 at UVA.

    “Maybe rowing is important to me, but it isn’t going to be my life,” Jones said. “I think that is really hard to face, because you can love something so much, but you have to realize that after college, it’s not doing anything for you except for being a fun pastime.”

    With Penn’s strong financial aid, large group of sophomore transfers and great academics, it seemed like the perfect choice.

    “I want to be a leader somewhere,” Jones said. “I want to do more things with my life than just major in rowing.”

    Despite the weaker and less intense team, Jones has never looked back or questioned her decision.

    “I always wanted to try to go to a really high-level institution. UVA is a good school, but it doesn’t compare to here,” she said.

    “I feel like I am in a real place, I’m not just rowing, rowing, rowing. I’m like, ‘Oh, employment. Oh, friendship. Oh, you’re from here.’ Here, you have pressure to expand and to meet other people.”

    For Jones, the transition was anything but easy, and TSO made the process easier.

    “[TSO made clear that] we know you’re not freshmen, we’ve been there, and we know you guys can do this,” Jones said.

    For Jones, the decision to transfer was more than just switching schools. It was about changing her life trajectory and reorganizing priorities.

    Every transfer, athlete or not, has their own story to share. Whether a desire for stronger academics, a financial struggle or something else brought the student to Penn, arriving at 34th and Walnut does not solve all the problems.

    “I think part of it is a struggle, you know?” Jones said. “You struggle at your old school, and you want to come here anManchester City defender Joel Latibeaudiere has moved to FC Twente.Latibeaudiere joins Twente on-loan for the season."We were in need for defenders, so we are happy that Manchester City and Joel were open to a loan agreement," technical director Ted van Leeuwen told the Twente website.The 19 year-old is yet to make his league debut for City.d do well.

    “Maybe you do have to struggle a little bit [here].”

    Perhaps it is that struggle that makes transfer students appreciate Penn in a way that those who enter as freshmen never can.

    When Becker came to Penn four years ago, there was nothing in place to help him transition into the Red and Blue as a transfer.

    “I don’t think they did anything special really to integrate transfers,” he said. “Coming in as a transfer is a little bit tough, because they treat you as a freshman for certain things, but not others. Overall, I’d say it could be improved.”

    And improved it has been. TSO is made up of a group of students who have transferred into Penn and are devoted to helping those going through the same process now.

    It is all too easy to overlook transfers because they do not fit neatly into a mold. Whether the motivation is financial, academic or anything in between, the 150 or so new non-freshman students that walk onto this campus every year are ready to start over, even while their peers are already acclimated to Penn.

    Max Polkinhorne, Katelynn Mudgett, Ryan Becker, Veronica Jones and countless others all have stories to tell — stories of struggle and triumph not discussed nearly enough.SEE ALSO

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  • A toast to tradition, transvestites and Pennsylvania football

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    Greer Cheeseman heads onto the field at the end of the third quarter already knowing how this toast toss — the first of the 2013 season — is going to go.

    As the director of the Penn Band, he’s seen his fair share of toast tosses.

    The band strikes up “Drink a Highball” as Cheeseman watches on. As the song comes to an end, people throw their toast.

    And then they’re gone.

    “This is the part I just don’t understand,” Cheeseman says. “They throw their toast and then they leave.”

    It’s not entirely an exodus, as a fair portion of the crowd stays and watches on despite the fact that Penn has opened up a sizable lead against Lafayette heading into the fourth.

    But Cheeseman isn’t wrong. A large number of fans leave the stadium immediately after throwing their toast.

    For them, Penn football is about tradition.

    At Penn, tradition is everything.

    From the Econ Scream, to Hey Day to Spring Fling, the four years students spend at Penn are enriched by these moments.

    The toast toss is as entrenched in Penn’s history as any of its traditions.

    The story students hear when they arrive at Penn is that for years, fans would drink a highball at the end of the third quarter. But in the middle of the 1970s, the University banned alcohol from being allowed in Franklin Field. As a response, fans started bringing toast rather than alcohol.

    Unfortunately, the history is not quite so dry.

    “I don’t know why they say that,” Cheeseman said.

    As Cheeseman recalled, the tradition had nothing to do with alcohol being banned.

    Instead, it started on South Street.

    The Theatre of Living Arts is now a concert hall, but back in the 1970s, it was a movie theater.

    The TLA had interactive midnight showings of Rocky Horror Picture Show, a cult phenomenon at the time. It featured the character Dr. Frank N. Furter, a transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania, as well as famous actors Susan Sarandon and Meatloaf. Audience members would scream at the screen in addition to doing various acts at points in the movie.

    There’s a scene late in the movie in which the doctor raises his glass and asks for “a toast to absent friends.”

    At that point in the film during those midnight showings, audience members would throw toast at the screen.

    Cheeseman and a few of his friends were amongst those in the crowd and came away impressed.

    “I thought it was clever,” Cheeseman said. “So me and a couple of my buddies decided to try it at a football game. So at the end of ‘Highball,’ we started throwing it.

    “And from there it seemed to take on a life of its own.”

    The tradition has less to do with alcohol being banned and more to do with a fictional doctor, donned in leather and fishnets, raising his glass.

    And now, with attendance dropping every decade, the toast toss may be one of the most memorable parts of Penn football.

    People don’t come out to watch Penn football any more.

    Look back at tape from the 1950s, and the home side of Franklin Field, lower and upper decks, would be filled. The same can be said for the 1980s, when Penn averaged 29,992 fans at Homecoming.

    The toast toss caught on quickly in the ’80s thanks to the large crowds, but the new tradition had no power in keeping fans coming to games over the decades since it began.

    When Dan Shulman got a second chance for Penn to beat Harvard and take the Ivy crown back in 1982, the stands were filled. Conversely, when Penn upset Harvard last Nov. 10, only 8,910 fans were in attendance.

    The ’80s were a resurgent time in Penn football. After being the laughing stock of the Ivy League for much of the ’60s and ’70s. Success had some hand in attendance during that decade, but the times have since changed.

    After all, Al Bagnoli has been Penn’s coach for 22 years. In that time, his team has won nine Ivy League titles, yet still attendance has declined.

    And Penn hasn’t played for anything but an Ivy League title since they joined the Ancient Eight in the late ’50s.

    Now, those that want to watch football are staying home on Saturday rather than coming out to Franklin Field.

    “Penn football’s great. They’re true amateurs. I love watching them,” Cheeseman said. “But if you’re a college football fan, you’re probably staying home, watching [games] on TV.”

    In addition, there are simply other things to do on campus.

    “A lot of people are like, ‘Oh, I have to do my dance group or go to my a cappella concert,” Penn Band secretary Josh Cooper said. “And [football] kind of gets pushed out of the way like a secondary thing.”

    That’s why the toast toss is so important to Penn football.

    The allure of witnessing a team compete for an Ivy championship, buying Chickie’s and Pete’s and spending a Saturday at a historic stadium isn’t enough to fill up even a fourth of Franklin Field’s capacity. It’s the toast toss that differentiates Penn from other schools, and it’s what Penn fans remember years later.

    But that Youtube moment that brings fans out, that students hear about from the time they step on campus and remember for years after they leave, has been threatened many times.

    The first threat to the toast toss came in 1988, when security guards began confiscating toast that people attempted to bring into the stadium.

    “We do not have a policy regarding toast,” Carolyn Schlie Femovich, then-senior associate athletics director, told The Daily Pennsylvanian at the time. “[chettino blanked questions about Christian Eriksen today.He refused to comment on speculation linking Eriksen with a move to Real Madrid, with Manchester United ending their interest in the midfielder as they believe he has his heart set on a move toBut] security has the leeway to confiscate any items that they deem to be safety or health hazards, as well as any items that could disrupt the competition.”

    As a response, Alan Schwarz, a former sports editor at the DP, wrote a column urging students to smuggle toast into the stadium. Had Penn Athletics had its way, there would have been no toast to throw that day, but thanks to Schwarz and his friends, the toast toss stayed alive.

    For a long while after Schwarz’ “Ocean’s Eleven” moment, Penn Athletics started providing the toast for students, but still the tradition fell under fire.

    Penn graduate Pranav Merchant wrote an op-ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer in 2010 criticising the University for promoting a tradition that is a waste of food. He argues that throwing $2,500-worth of food when just blocks away people are living in poverty is ignorant.

    Three years later, he still believes his argument.

    “I grew up with the mentality to respect food,” Merchant said. “To see people take food and just throw it like that is disrespectful.”

    The article raised questions around the Penn community, questioning whether the tradition should be continued. Ultimately, Merchant’s claims fell on deaf ears and the tradition stayed alive.

    Just last year, Penn Athletics decided to stop providing toast, calling for student groups like Red and Blue Crew to take the charge.

    Head of Red and Blue Crew, Jonathan Cousins, presumed everything would work out until he arrived at Skimmerfest that day and saw that no one had toast with them.

    “I said, ‘You know what’s going to happen? All thwas heavily linked with Tottenham and Chelsea.
The German club have reportedly paid €27m for Piatek.“I'm so happy that this transfer got done," Piatek told Hertha's official website. "The way this club is going really convinced me that this wase freshmen are going to come. No one’s going to have any toast. We’re gonna sing the song. There’ll be like 10 pieces of toast thrown by people that brought it,’” Cousins said.

    “It could have died.”

    Ultimately, Penn Athletics helped Red and Blue Crew have bread delivered to the stadium and the crisis was avoided, keeping the tradition alive for ahe potential of teammate Joao Felix.The 20-year-old came on as a second-half substitute against Villarreal, scoring the third in a 3-1 win."Everyone can see what is expected of Joao, he's a young boy and he has lots of room for improvement," Koke sainother day.

    Penn Athletics Director Steve Bilsky is a fan of the tradition.

    “I think it’s a great tradition,” Bilsky said. “I think it’s fun. I’m a big tradition guy, and when you have something that works, keep it.”

    But for Penn Athletics, tradition and money are inextricably linked, serving as another potential threat to the toast toss.

    “I’d like to sell every year,” Bilsky continued, “to the class that’s having its 25th reunion, I’d like to sell the [toast] zamboni to them that year.”

    The third quarter comes to a close as Penn and Dartmouth are locked up in a tight battle on Oct. 5, with the Quakers up one touchdown.

    As toast rains down from the stands, so do the fans. Not as many supporters leave as during the Lafayette game, but still a fair portion of the crowd vacates the stadium.

    Those who stayed were treated to the longest game in Ivy League history, a four-overtime thriller including a blocked kick by senior linebacker David Park to send the game into overtime just when it looked like Dartmouth had it sealed up.

    But the people that left after the toast toss weren’t there for the football anyway.

    “I’ve seen it more and more over the last five or ten years,” Cheeseman said. “More and more people come for the first quarter, stay through halftime, stay for ‘Highball,’ throw the toast, and then there’s an exodus.

    “It’s ‘I came, I saw. I threw. I’m outta here.’”

    Had Cousins’ worst fear been realized that day in 2012, had no toast been thrown from the stands and slowly the toast toss had died, Penn football would have survived. It just wouldn’t be the same.

    More than simply losing the percentage of people who come just to throw toast, Penn football would lose a piece of its soul.

    Parents and alumni wouldn’t scramble to grab a few slices of bread before heading to the game. The band wouldn’t get together every week to make toast.

    “It’s one of those fun things that, after the fact, my parents got excited about putting some bread in the toaster before they left and bringing it down with them,” wide receivers coach and former Penn player Mark Fabish said.

    “It was important for them to be a part of the tradition.”

    While Frank toasts to absent friends in Rocky Horror, Penn fans follow the lyrics of “Highball” to a T — they tell the story of glory of Pennsylvania.

    Only that story isn’t of the heroics that happen on the football field, but the memories forged in the stands.

    “My memories aren’t about the football team going 10-0 my freshmen year. It’s from being part of something that was fun and distinctive and memorable,” Schwarz said. “And when you remove the things that make you distinctive, it’s a dangerous game.

    “Because when you take away those things, you move one step closer to being boring.”SEE ALSO

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  • Tony | Penn basketball can beat Harvard's small ball with smart ball

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    We’ve known for a while now that Harvard’s basketball team is a very beatable bunch.

    Maybe it was the Crimson’s struggles in two games against Dartmouth that tipped off Ivy hoops fans that the Crimson weren’t all they were cracked up to be. Maybe it was Harvard’s failure to close out Yale at home with authority.

    Or for the few who don’t believe in style points, maybe it was the way Crimson coach Tommy Amaker’s squad wilted in the second half at Columbia Sunday afternoon.

    But what we didn’t know until recently is that, even without Fran Dougherty and with Darien Nelson-Henry coming off of a low-grade MCL sprain, the Quakers should still have an advantage in the paint against the Crimson.

    That’s because Harvard plays small ball. Amaker lacks a true center, so he’s consistently gone with a lineup of four perimeter players throughout the season. Nailing perimeter jumpers and pushing the pace of games in transiti to make an immediate appointment of a sporting director.The club hired Jose Mourinho to take over from the sacked Mauricio Pochettino this week.But the Evening Standard reports that any suggestions there would be an imminent sporting director / direon from the outset have been two of Harvard’s top priorities this year, and they’ve got just tt has gotten a lot more difficult for top teams in the Premier League lately.The Red Devils have struggled against sides lower than them in the table, as they have a better record against teams in the so called top six.And Matic believes a lot of teahe horses to run such an offense.

    Sophomore forward Wesley Saunders, freshman guard Siyani Chambers and junior guard Laurent Rivard all average at least 42 percent shooting from beyond the arc, and the Crimson rank 10th in the country in team field goal percentage. So it’s no surprise that Harvard easily ranks first among Ivies in three-point percentage. Forget Mouse Davis — this is the real run-aue landing the top job in the future.Pique hasn't hidden his desire to become president of Barca in the future.And Laporta says: "If I [become president], it wouldn't be bad if Gerard Pique followed me as president because I see him as an ideal persond-shoot offense.

    And we’ve seen that it can be a double-edged sword. When Harvard’s hot, they’re really hot, but the Crimson’s 63-41 second-half lead against Brown completely evaporated when they started bricking their jumpers. Scoring 49 points in one half and 20 in the other means you must be gambling too much on perimeter shooting somewhere.

    Harvard’s not an efficient team either, ranking third-to-last in the mediocre Ancient Eight in turnovers per contest.

    And that’s why Penn needs to put its money where its momentum is: in the paint.

    The Quakers have a blossoming low-post presence back in Nelson-Henry who could be a gamechanger both in scoring and rebounding. Penn snared a combined 24 offensive boards last weekend against Yale and Brown, the two best rebounding teams in the conference. Harvard, in contrast, ranks dead last among Ivies on the boards.

    So when Harvard plays small ball Friday night, will Penn play smart ball?

    Coach Jerome Allen needs to go big here. Give sophomore forward Henry Brooks extra minutes. Emphasize patience for Miles Cartwright in running the motion offense in order to slow down the game’s tempo and wear down Harvard’s six-man rotation. Let Harvard beat you from deep, because eventually, they’ll start beating themselves.

    If Penn is to win at Lavietes Pavilion for the second straight year, it’ll have to work a little half-court magic. That’s still a big if, though, since the Crimson have done an excellent job of walking the fine line between beatable and beaten up to this point.

    But the Quakers haven’t had an offensive identity other than “give it to Zack” in a long time, so rolling their inside out from start to finish should make Quakers fans breathe a little easier against the Cardiac Crimson.

    MIKE TONY is a junior English and history major from Uniontown, Pa., and is senior sports editor of The Daily Pennsylvanian. He can be reached at tony@thedp.com.SEE ALSO

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  • Penn basketball puts best foot forward on and off court

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    Everyone knows it’s important to make a good first impression, to put your best foot forward.

    Perhaps none more so than seniors Zack Rosen, Tyler Bernardini and the Penn men’s basketball team, who have been parlaying hot starts into dramatic victories as of late.

    Most recently, it was an 82-67 squashing of rival Princeton, a game in which the Quakers built an early 11-2 lead, surged ahead by as much as 16 and withstood a Tigers onslaught.

    Befhreat of RB Salzburg in the Champions League.The Reds are facing a tricky opponent in their second game of the group stages.They badly need a win after their defeat against Napoli in the first round of games.And Klopp believes they are fully preparedore that came decisive wins over Cornell and St. Joseph’s — the Red and Blue never trailed in either game.

    In fact, Penn has not spent even a minute behind or tied in a game since it visited Columbia to open the Ivy season.

    Getting ahead early is a huge advantage to a team that relies heavily on the hot shooting of its two star scorers.

    Bernardini, especially, has been known to get streaky, meaning that when he’s on, he’s really on.

    But even more infectious than Bernardini’s shooting is the confidence and enthusiasm that emanates from undisputed team leader Zack Rosen, especially when he’s playing well.

    “It’s my responsibility to push him to play a perfect basketball game,” coach Jerome Allen said of Rosen after the Princeton win.

    Perfectionism trickles down from Allen to Rosen to the rest of the team, rising and falling with the point guard’s successes and failures.

    Indeed, the New Jersey native averages 20.6 points per Penn win, compared to 15.4 points per loss.

    The team’s success is something of a positive feedback loop: the better the Red and Blue play, the more confidence they gain, in turn enhancing their play, and so on and so forth.

    Off-court activities have also translated into hardwood success, as players — as well as Penn Athletics and The Daily Pennsylvanian — have put considerable effort into reaching out to the Penn community and cultivating student interest.

    Theand in a foreign land. But Raul Sanllehi, after so many years being kept away from the spotlight, is finally receiving the public appreciation he deserves.Kings of the summer market? It's hard to argue otherwise. Particularly when talking just Premie team’s two most recognizable stars — Rosen and Bernardini — have posted up on Locust Walk in days preceding games, conducting contests and selling merchandise.

    The ‘Puck Frinceton’ motto on the shirts being sold on Locust was a bit unoriginal, but the campaign was effective nonetheless.

    Grassroots marketing has worked: the Palestra was packed to capacity for the St. Joe’s game, and 6,385 were on hand as the Quakers handled Princeton.

    The way in which such promotional efforts help Penn on the court can be seen and felt in the energy and enthusiasm of the crowd.

    That energy flows in a downward trajectory from the fans to the players.

    “I just appreciate the overall support, from the student body to all the alumni,” Allen said. “The reality is, you tend to perform better, you tend to give more, when you know other people care.”

    The more the team continues to excite the community — mainly through winning — the more people are going to care.

    There shall once again come a time when a majority of students bleed Red and Blue.

    Thismissed qualifying for Europe this season as unrealistic and admits his side still have relegation fears."We are an awful lot of points off the teams at the moment who have got those positions in their grasp, so it's not something that occupies my te Quakers just need to put their best foot forward.

    ELI COHEN is a senior philosophy major from Washington, D.C. He can be reached at dpsports@theDP.com.

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  • Wrestling | Sinfully good field at Vegas invite

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    For senior 149-pounder Cesar Grajales and the Penn wrestling team, what happens in Vegas hopefully won't stay in Vegas.

    Grajales and the Quakers (1-1) expect their experience against top-flight competition at this weekend's Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational to r Fedor Chalov has confirmed Crystal Palace are keen.Sandor Varga admits he's held talks with Palace manager Roy Hodgson about a deal this week for Chalov. However, Palace's £14m offer fell short of CSKA's valuation.He told Sport-Express: "Yes, he ccarry over later in the season.

    "We might only see these type of guys here [at] this tournament," Grajales said. "It could come into effect later when qualifying [for the NCAA tournament] comes into play."

    The invitational's field includes six ranked teams from the powerhouse Big Ten, including No. 12 Michigan, who beat the Red and Blue, 22-15, in a dual match earlier this season. Other top teams include No. 3 Ohio State, No. 4 Cornell, No.7 Illinois, No. 8 Minnesota, No. 10 Lehigh, No. 11 Wisconsin, No. 14 Boise State and No. 19 Indiana.

    With all that in mind, No. 23 Penn is more worried about double-leg takedowns than doubling down as they spend the next two days in Sin City.

    The Red and Blue are looking to improve on their 14th place finish from last year, which was highlighted by 125-pound junior Rollie Peterkin battling back from a semifinal loss to capture third place in his weightclass.

    "I think we're going to do a lot better," Peterkin said. "We have Matt Dragon back."

    t on Monday at Wolves.United go into the game on the back of victory over Chelsea."They were two tough games last season, we knew that because they are so hard to break down, they lie low, defend deep and are very good at counter-attacking," SolskjaeDragon - currently ranked 17th by the National Wrestling Coaches Association at 157 pounds - missed all of last season after taking a medical redshirt because of shoulder surgery.

    So far this season, Dragon is undefeated and looking quite fresh.

    And the Quakers know that to "do a lot better," they're going to have to keep their minds off of the craps tables and on the task at hand.

    Indeed, coacharson was left delighted with their emphatic 3-0 defeat of Aston Villa on Saturday.The Hornets were leading through Troy Deeney's goal shortly before the interval, but Adrian Mariappa's sending off for two bookable offences could have proved a big tu Rob Eiter and his team have no delusions about why they're flying out to Las Vegas on the University's dollar.

    "They know what they're going out there for," Eiter said. "It's not a vacation."

    Peterkin, currently ranked sixth, concurs.

    "At a wrestling tournament, it's really a single-track mind," he said. "All business."

    Peterkin and the Quakers are in the business of winning, and business is going to be good.

    At least, Peterkin thinks so.

    "I'm definitely looking to win it," he boldly proclaimed. "There's no reason that I shouldn't."

    Whether he should or not, Peterkin has reason to be humble: he lost, 10-4, to Michigan's Michael Watts during the teams' dual meet on Nov. 22. Watts, ranked No. 13 nationally at 125 pounds, will be one of Peterkin's toughest obstacles, along with No. 1 Angel Escobedo of Indiana.

    The Quakers might need some help from Lady Luck if they plan to triumph over the stacked deck of competition.

    But the Quakers welcome the opportunity to face the nation's toughest grapplers.

    Just ask Eiter.

    "In order to be the best, you gotta wrestle the best," he said. "And beat them."

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  • Columbia took walk down easy street for 2 wins

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    Two weeks in, the Columbia bakery has run out of cream puffs.

    For the second straight year, the Lions are 2-0. For the second straight year, they got the two W's against a pair of I-AA weaklings. And for the second straight year, the road gets much tougher in Week 3.

    Princeton at Columbia

    Last year's Lions under Bob Shoop rode the momentum of the 2-0 start into a 43-3 loss at Princeton.

    Now Shoop is gone, the matchup of undefeated teams has shifted to New York and new Lions coach Norries Wilson gets his first test in front of the homecoming crogood impression on the players.The Gunners recorded their first win under the Spaniard thanks to a 2-0 home success against Manchester United on New Year's Day.And it appears the relatively inexperienced boss is winning over the players with his innowd.

    Wilson and Co. put a serious beatdown on Fordham and held on long enough to survive Georgetown at home.

    While the Lions haven't really gotten it going on the ground, quarterback Craig Hormann has hit a variety of targets to the tune of 28-for-47 passing. But their MVP so far has been kicker Jon Rocholl, who has knocked in six straight field goals.

    They may need more than field goals to beat the Tigers, who have good wins at Lehigh and at Princeton Stadium against Lafayette. The Tigers are succeeding on the strength of a defensemo Werner is on his way to Tottenham in the summer.The German striker was linked with a move to Liverpool in the press today.Leipzig seized on the story and made a joke about it through their official Twitter account.The club issued a reply regarding that has allowed 24 points in two games and allowed just 206 yards to the Leopards.

    Don't look for a repeat of last season's blowout, but Columbia would be fortunate to win the matchups on either side of the ball.

    (23) Harvard at Lehigh

    Liam O'Hagan? Suspended

    Chris Pizzotti? Hurt

    Jeff Witt? Hurt

    Richard Irvin? Here, coach.

    Harvard will travel to Bethlehem, Pa., to face the Mountain Hawks, bringing with them their fourth-string quarterback, who will start for the Crimson tomorrow. He's the fourth QB in four games, dating back to last season.

    He's also the only one with Division I-A experience.

    The Tulane transfer, who played for Harvard in seven games last season, takes on a Lehigh team that boasts a win at Villanova, but losses to Princeton and Albany.

    Despite the quarterback issues and thanks to the nation's leading runner, Clifton Dawson, the Crimson is second in the country in total offense, ranking just behind No. 1 New Hampshire.

    But it meets its toughest challenge yet against a Lehigh team that ranks 21st in the country in total defense.

    Brown at Rhode Island

    The 91st meeting between the state's two Division I programs will be marked by two teams coming off tough home losses in conference play.

    The Bears got run over by Dawson and the Crimson last week, while Rhode Island fell in Kingston to No. 17 Delaware.

    Brown leads the series 66-22-2, and to capture the Governor's Cup for the third straight season, it will have to improve against the run. Rhode Island boasts a three-man rushing attack, which has the Rams ranked fifth in the nation with 243.3 rush yards per game - one spot better than Harvard.

    (22)Albany at Cornell

    After being shut down by Yale, the task gets no easier against an impressive Albany defense and a Great Danes team that is ranked for the fi land a move to Manchester City.Neville coached Cancelo during his short spell in charge of Valencia.“I absolutely love him to bits. To be fair, when I was at Valencia I wanted United to sign him, at the time they could have got him for £25m and hrst time in its history.

    Albany places 10th in the nation in points allowed and 14th in total defense, while the Cornell offense has scored just 12 points in two games.

    After seeing film of Albany shutting down then-No. 11 Delaware the Big Red knows it will need a much better effort than that.

    Yale at Lafayette

    The wannabe Ivy Leaguers play their third straight Ancient Eight team when they welcome the Elis to Fisher Field.

    The Leopards opened their renovated stadium with a loss to Penn, then went on the road last week and got shut down by the Princeton defense.

    The Elis showed a lot in bouncing back from a bad home loss to San Diego to beat Cornell. But a win at Lafayette would take another big step up.

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  • by the coronavirus outbreak.The Premier League clu

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    After failing to secure a spot on the opening day roster, first baseman was released by the on Sunday. Allen, who joined Texas on a miMilan this summer.But he told Four Four Two: "It's a nice feeling when you get praise for your good work, but I'm not thinking about a transfer at the moment."berto Firmino.Reports in the press have indicated that Bayern Munich may be willing to make a big money offer for the attacker.But Austin, who is a Reds fan, does not think the 28-year-old no.9 should be sold under any circumstances.Firmino has eightI've just arrived at Everton. I'mi making an impact with Italy.The Roma midfielder scored in victory over Armenia last week.Totti said, “I am not surprised by Pellegrini's improvement, as I've always known Lorenzo was phenomenal. Now it's up to him to keep going at this level.“A happy here."Brazil are set to take on Qatar and Honduras nor-league deal in the offseason, was one of the team's first roster cuts this spring after hitting just .194 in Cactus League play.

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  • rns 33 in February and his current deal expires at

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    manager Ned Yost said Thursday no decision has been made yet on who wian Tierney will join Arsenal.And he is worries about the shockwaves that will send ripplinice Evra is adamant Paul Pogba will be staying this season.Real Madrid remain keen on the midfielder.But Evra, speaking in Monaco for the Champions League draw, stated: "Paul is focused, Paul is in Manchester and he will stay in Manchester. There havg through the Hoops support.Walker said, "It will be a real downer for the fans when Kieran Tierney leaves."You can lose any player and fans will just accept itll back up starting catcher Salvador Perez, according to The Kansas City Star.

    Yost said the decision between and will go until the last day of camp, whicArsenal to face PSG, as Glasgow take on Wolfsburg in the Women's Champions League.Arsenal v Paris St-GermainGlasgow City v WolfsburgAtletico Madrid v BarcelonaLyon v Bayern MunichSemi-final drawArsenal/Paris St-Germain v Lyon/Bayern MunichGlasgow City/Wolfsburg v Atletico Madrid/Barcelonah is Friday.

    Kottaras is batting .324 (11 for 34) with three doubles, six RBI and 10 walks in 17 games. Hayes is batting .306 (11 for 36) with one double, one triple, two homers and 10 RBI in 19 games.

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