Revenge of the Nerds: When Ivy Leaguers Invade the NCAA Tournament

Revenge of the Nerds: When Ivy Leaguers Invade the NCAA Tournament


The "token black friend" gets busy.

So the student-athlete is dead? The Ivy League begs to differ! Seems like every few years, a group of über-competitive white nerds (and their token black friend) shock the world at March Madness. This year, it's Cornell, who advanced to the Sweet Sixteen yesterday with an upset win over Wisconsin. But the Big Red aren't the first Ivy Leaguers to fuck up a bracket. Take a look at our history of Ivy League hoops in the NCAA tourney...

Dartmouth1942

DARTMOUTH, 1942
ONE SHINING MOMENT: The Big Green went through Penn State and Kentucky to become the first and only Ivy League school to reach the NCAA championship game.
COMPLEX SAYS: They ended up losing the big game to Stanford, which is practically Ivy League anyway. Consolation prize: we all know Ivy League girls still give the best brain.

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UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, 1979
ONE SHINING MOMENT: The #9-seed Quakers (out of 10 seeds) beat big dogs such as North Carolina and Syracuse en route to the Final Four, before losing to Magic and Michigan State.
COMPLEX SAYS: Said Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim before Penn eliminated his Orangemen: "Who are we kidding? Penn is not an Ivy League team...They don't belong in the Ivy League because they are too good for that league." In short: BLACK!

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PRINCETON, 1989
MOMENT: The #16-seed Tigers almost took out the #1-seed Georgetown Hoyas, falling one point short in a 50-49 loss.
COMPLEX SAYS: Remains the closest a #16-seed has ever come to knocking off a top dog. Long live the god Pete Carril.

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PRINCETON, 1996
MOMENT: The #13-seed Tigers took out the defending champion and #4-seed UCLA Bruins in the opening round.
COMPLEX SAYS: There's a reason the "Princeton-style" offense lives on to this day. Maybe some of these white dudes need to look into this league after all.

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1998-princeton-tigers

PRINCETON, 1998
ONE SHINING MOMENT: The #5-seed Tigers earned the highest Ivy League ranking in tournament history and defeated #12-seed UNLV in the opening round before bowing out to Michigan State.
COMPLEX SAYS: "That team is beatable,'' said a Princeton player after the Michigan State loss. ''They were jumping up and down when they beat us, like they hadn't won a game in five days or a year. They were doing a lot for the Big Ten champs. They are beatable." Goes to show you: Things are a little bit different when you're no longer just the cute little Ivy League team and you catch a high seed.

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Tags: cornell, ivy-league, march-madness, ncaa-basketball
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