Introducing the Ivy League Digital Network

The Ivy League announced Friday that it has partnered with Internet Protocol television company NeuLion to create the league's first-ever digital sports network.

Scheduled to launch in August, the Ivy League Digital Network will be comprised of nine separate channels accessible on  tablets, computers and mobile devices, meaning Ancient Eight fans will no longer have to pay for each school's own individual streaming service.

The new nine-channel video platform will consist of eight channels for each individual school and one conference-wide channel which will feature all available Ancient Eight digital content. Schools' own production crews will continue to provide the streams, which will then be unified under the new network.

Subscription  costs have not been announced when the network goes live this summer.

Penn Athletic Director Steve Bilsky told The Daily Pennsylvanian in January that he had been involved in trying to get the Ivy League to offer all streaming available under one package.

“If we’re able to do this league-wide, you’re going to have every away game,” Bilsky said to The DP in January. “And as a real fan, you might be interested in watching the Harvard-Princeton basketball game on your network for whatever the price is. It will find its right value.”

Bilsky also noted in January that any universal Ivy streaming package would have to achieve comparable quality across all schools, so that fans of one school which features high-definition and announcers in its broadcasts won't grow frustrated with other schools' broadcasts that don't.

Schools' own production crews will continue to provide the Ivy League Digital Network's streams, which will then be unified under the new video platform.

Bilsky wasn't immediately available when reached for comment Friday afternoon.

 

 

 

 

Three Up, Three Down: Princeton Edition

Three Up Three DownIt's rare for the Penn-Princeton matchup to have no Ivy title implications. That said, both teams still have pride on the line: the Quakers (9-21, 6-7 Ivy) are looking to salvage a disappointing season by improving to a .500 record in conference play, while the Tigers (16-11, 9-4) will try to bounce back after suffering defeats on the road against Yale and Brown that ended their Ancient Eight championship hopes. When the two teams meet for what ESPN calls one of the greatest rivalries in college basketball Tuesday night at the Palestra,  who will be up and who will be down for Penn basketball?

Three Up-

Tony Hicks: It's hard to be "up" much more than averaging 23.8 points per contest over his last four games, but Hicks to continue his great play against the Tigers. Last time the teams met, Hicks was the lone bright spot for Penn, putting up 16 points in the defeat. Princeton has no defender quick enough to keep up with Hicks, who has only gotten better since their last meeting. The rookie guard is much improved from the free throw line, as he has made 40-for-45 (.889) from the charity stripe since the last Penn-Princeton matchup. With his quickness and shooting prowess, Hicks will likely put up 16+ points against the Tigers Tuesday night.

Darien Nelson-Henry: Despite Princeton sporting a lineup full of trees (no starter for the Tigers stands under 6-5), Nelson-Henry outweighs all of his opposing starters by at least 40 pounds. Combine that with soft hands and developing skills in the post, and the freshman center is in for a good night while carrying the load inside for Penn.

Attendance: A down year for Penn basketball has left the student section at the Palestra relatively empty on many occasions this season. However, a significant uptick in student attendance can be expected against Princeton. If nothing else, students will attend to wear their "Puck Frinceton" shirts and shout epithets at their rival school.

Three Down-

Three-point shooting defense: T.J. Bray buried the Quakers in January by burying six three-pointers on his way to a 23-point performance. Overall, the Tigers knocked down 11 treys while shooting 50 percent from distance. With Ivy League Player of the Year candidate Ian Hummer attracting attention inside the three-point line, the Penn defense will be distracted and end up chasing the ball around the perimeter. The Tigers, who lead the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Ancient Eight in assists, will succeed in making the extra pass and finding the open man.

Miles Cartwright: The junior guard struggled to find the bottom of the net against the Tigers last time around, converting just 1-for-7 from the field, and there is no reason to believe anything has changed for him since then. Unlike Hicks, Cartwright does not have the craftiness and agility to create his own shot and slice his way through the Princeton zone defense, and his three-point shooting has rarely been reliable this season. All signs point to Cartwright shooting well below 50 percent once again, though he can give Penn a chance to win by distributing the ball  and limiting turnovers.

Turnovers: Over the last three games, Penn has averaged just 13.7 turnovers per contest — a significant improvement from the poor ball handling earlier in the season. Additionally, Princeton ranks second-to-last in steal among the Ivies, which should help the Quakers maintain possession of the ball.

Scouting Report: Brown Edition

Familiar Foe: A month ago, Penn picked up its second Ivy League victory against these same Brown Bears at the Palestra. Miles Cartwright led the way with a career-high 28 points, while Tony Hicks added 15 as the Quakers won 71-48 in a rout.

Since We Last Met: After the loss to Penn, Brown was struggling, as the squad had started out 2-4 in Ivy play. And it didn’t get much better soon after, as the Bears proceeded to lose two of their next three, including a close three-point loss to Cornell. But coach Martin and the Bears have turned it around, having won three straight heading into the matchup with Penn in Providence. The first two wins, which came against Dartmouth and Cornell, came by a combined 28 points, but Brown needed a little more work for a road victory against Columbia at Levien Gymnasium. After a late Lions rally tied the game at 58, the Bears inbounded near midcourt with 1.1 seconds remaining. They ran a play that looked to be designed for junior guard Sean McGonagill to get the final shot, but instead set a back screen for Tucker Halpern to hit a buzzer-beating three pointer to sink Columbia.

Leading the Charge: So if Brown is playing well, the question becomes, thanks to who? The Bears are heavily reliant on their starting five since the team only played eight players in its recent road trip to Cornell and Columbia. That starting five – McGonagill, Halpern, Rafael Maia, Cedric Kuakahmensah, and Matt Sullivan – have been the keys to Brown’s winning streak, each averaging over 25 minutes a game on the season. McGonagill, who is fourth in the Ivies in points and assists per game, has been strong in the three-game stretch, averaging 11.7 points and 3.3 assists per contest. Halpern had a game-high 22 points against Cornell and Sullivan has put up at least 16 points in each of the three wins. Maia and Kuakahmensah have been strong in the post, averaging 9.3 and 6.6 rebounds per contest, respectively.

Sizing it up:

Scoring: PENN- Neither Penn nor Brown has been particularly impressive at putting the ball in the basket this season, ranking sixth and seventh, respectively, in the Ivies in scoring offense. And while Penn put up 75 points to beat Harvard last week and has the recent offensive surge of Tony Hicks, Brown has two of the top four scorers in points per game in the Ancient Eight while also having had its own 84-point outburst against Cornell. This one is pretty even, with a slight edge to Penn based on the 71 points the Red and Blue registered in the first meeting.

Rebounding: BROWN- While Darien Nelson-Henry looked strong down low against Harvard, the Quakers now face a much better frontcourt team than the Crimson. Maia and Kuakamensah are first and second respectively in rebounds per game in the Ancient Eight, and the Bears are second in offensive rebounds. Additionally, Brown is third in rebounding margin, while Penn is dead last.

Beyond the Arc: PENN- This is a close one statistically, as the two teams are within two points of each other in three-point percentage. But the Quakers displayed in the first meeting that they can hit treys very well, going 9-for-15 from three-point range. And the Quakers have weapons off the bench to make long-range jumpers, including Dau Jok and Patrick Lucas-Perry.

Bench: PENN- Speaking of the bench, this category is all Quakers. While the Red and Blue had just nine points off the bench against Harvard, their reserves can absorb a lot more minutes than Brown’s small three-man bench. With players like Jok, Lucas-Perry and Greg Louis, the Quakers can give their starters a spell while still providing quality minutes, something Brown doesn’t always get outside of their starters.

Defense: BROWN- The Bears have only allowed their opponent to score 70 points or more three times in conference play, and have held their past three opponents to 57.7 points per game. On the other side of the court, the Quakers have struggled defensively, ranking seventh in scoring offense, while allowing Harvard to drain 10 shots from beyond the arc Saturday.

Tony Hicks honored with second straight Ivy League Rookie of the Week

Different week, same award.Tony Hicks

For the second consecutive week, Tony Hicks was named Ivy League Rookie of the Week after putting up a combined 47 points in Penn's two games against Dartmouth and Harvard over the weekend.

Hicks led all players in scoring for the third and fourth straight games. He put up 23 points on 7-for-14 shooting in Friday night's loss to Dartmouth. The freshman guard also went 6-for-6 from the free throw line and helped Penn take a lead late in the game.

On Saturday night, Hicks was instrumental in the Quakers' upset of then first-place Harvard, as he scored 24 points while dishing out five assists. Those assists helped fuel a strong game from fellow-freshman Darien Nelson-Henry, who added a career-high 20 points against the Crimson.

Hicks has now scored 95 points in the last two weekends for an average of 23.8 points per game. In Penn's 11 Ivy contests, he leads the Red and Blue with 15.6 points per contest.

Tony Hicks named Ivy League Rookie of the Week

HICKS!!!Tony Hicks’ Empire State success has not gone unnoticed.

After scoring 48 points combined against Cornell and Columbia last weekend, Hicks was named Ivy League Rookie of the Week on Monday.

Hicks came out of the gates on fire against Cornell on Friday, scoring 15 of Penn’s first 17 points before finishing with a career-high 29 points. On Saturday, he led the Quakers with 19 points at Columbia as he went 8-for-15 from the field.

The freshman has been consistent for Penn in Ivy League play, leading the team with 13.8 points per game during the course of the Red and Blue’s nine-game Ivy slate.

Hicks is the third Quaker freshman to receive the Ancient Eight’s rookie of the week, following the lead of Jamal Lewis and Darien Nelson-Henry.

Men’s lacrosse’s Schwalje named Co-Ivy League Player of the Week

When you put up a big performance against a nationally ranked team, you are bound to receive some recognition.

After putting up a career-high seven points to lead the Quakers in a 14-9 upset victory over No.13/14 Duke, senior attackman Tim Schwalje was named Ivy League Co-Player of the Week.

Schwalje had three goals to go with a career-high four assists, while also having a hand in five of Penn’s final eight goals in their comeback victory. This was the senior's first time receiving the Ivy League Player of the Week award.

Goalkeeper Brian Feeney also received recognition from the Ancient Eight, as he was named to the Ivy League Honor Roll for his performance against Duke.

The junior had 15 saves against the Blue Devils, including six saves in the second period alone to keep the Quakers in the game.

The win against Duke moved men's lacrosse into the rankings this week, as the team placed No. 14 in the USILA national coaches poll and No. 15 in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media poll.

Game 26: Columbia — The Good, the Bad & the Ugly

Good Bad & Ugly

BOX SCORE // FULL RECAP

Riding momentum from a 79-71 victory over Cornell the night before, Penn entered its matchup at Columbia with a head of steam, as the squad was looking to log its first Ivy weekend sweep of the year. But the Quakers' offense stalled against the Lions, and Penn walked away with its most disappointing loss of the season, a 58-41 defeat that ended not with a bang but a sad, lonely whimper. The Quakers, however, were not alone in their offensive struggles. Though Columbia picked up a win, the Lions had an abysmal performance from the field in the second half in a game in which each Ivy squad seemed determined to match the other's horrific shooting. With bad play all around, this edition of "The Good, the Bad & the Ugly" will in actuality be "The Ugly, the Ugly & the Marginally Less Ugly."

THE UGLY: Six field goals from both teams combined in the second half.

In the second frame, Penn and Columbia scored a total of six field goals — four on the Quakers' side and two for the Lions, while shooting 16.7 percent and 10 percent from the field, respectively. While one would like to attribute the low scoring to excellent defense, it was largely a result of poor shooting performances by virtually everyone on the floor. Neither team finished above 33.3 percent shooting overall, though Columbia did convert 22-26 free throws in the game, which led the Lions to victory.

THE UGLY: Three technical fouls on Penn's side.

Freshman Tony Hicks followed up his 29-point performance against Cornell with 19 points against the Lions. However, his play was tarnished by receiving two technical fouls and ultimately fouling out of the game with 3:33 left in the game. Hicks logged his first 'T' at the 7:42 mark in the second half. It was unclear just what the call resulted from, but it seems like Hicks said something to the refs they didn't like after calling a foul against the rookie. His second technical came a few minutes later with 3:33 remaining. Again, the reasons for the infraction were unclear, but it sent Hicks to the showers early as he also tallied his fifth personal foul. His ejection killed Penn’s momentum and extinguished any chance of the Quakers crawling back into the game. If that weren't enough, just a moment later, coach Jerome Allen was whistled for a technical after reacting to a missed travel call.

MARGINALLY LESS UGLY: Hicks dazzles again with 19 points.

Despite the technical fouls, Hicks was certainly the closest thing to a bright spot for Penn. After Columbia defenders swatted away a couple of his first drives to the rim, Hicks adjusted and began to effectively utilize a jump shot that has improved greatly over the course of the season. The rookie shot 8-for-15 from the field, accounting for more than half of Penn's 14 field goals. Clearly, however, it was far from enough to keep the Quakers in the game, even with the Lions converting just 2-20 from the field in the second half.

Darien Nelson-Henry named Ivy League Rookie of the Week

Amanda Suarez/DP File Photo

Amanda Suarez/DP File Photo

Now the rest of the Ivy League has taken notice of DNH's momentum. It's his first Ivy weekly honor, and it comes after he posted his first double-double at Penn in the Quakers' 54-53 squeaker over NJIT Thursday night, notching 12 points and 11 rebounds. Nelson-Henry was also one of few bright spots for Penn in its loss to St. Joseph's Saturday, matching a career high with 17 points and being the only player to reach double figures against the Hawks.

DNH has started the last two games and is averaging 6.8 points (good for fourth on the team) and 3.3 boards per game (good for third) through 16 contests.