The rollouts aren't as clever as they used to be. Rules prohibit the
shower of streamers onto the court after the first made basket. Some of
the games are now played on the Main Line or in North Philly instead of
in the wonderfully musty Palestra.
Yet the Big 5, that thoroughly
blue-collar, totally old-school, completely Philadelphia creation, is
very much alive. It still resonates in a city that will proudly put its
hoops history up against the nouveau riche on Tobacco Road.
The main story is by the Daily News' own Dana Pennett O'Neil but for some reason when she writes for ESPN she is just Dana O'Neil. She seems to think the city of Philadelphia is brain washed by the Eagles, which I don't entirely agree with. Sure, Philly bleeds green, but the entire city was behind St. Joe's a few years ago. I'd say she was right on if she were talking about the average fan, which many of you may be, but a good portion of Philly fans are more than just die hard Birds fans. Anyway. It's nice to see 'Nova get some good national attention, even if I am somewhat of a 'Nova hater. Long story: grew up cheering for Nova but went to a school which used to be in the Big East so I learned to hate them. Then you have the whole Main Line attitude to deal with. I get a kick out of the Villanova kids who think their school is as hard to get into as an Ivy. They've probably just spent too much time in the tanning bed sun.
I did spend many summers growing up at Rollie Massimino, Fran Dunphy, and I think even one Phil Martelli basketball camp, so I will always have a soft spot for the Big 5.
Anyway, some great reads over at ESPN for you Nova fans.