Villanova Wildcats men's basketball

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Villanova Wildcats
2013–14 Villanova Wildcats men's basketball team
Villanova Wildcats athletic logo
University Villanova University
Conference Big East
Location Villanova, PA
Head coach Jay Wright (13th year)
Arena The Pavilion
(Capacity: 6,500)
Nickname Wildcats
Colors

Blue and White

            
Uniforms
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Home jersey
Kit shorts blanksides2.png
Team colours
Home
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Away jersey
Kit shorts whitesides.png
Team colours
Away
NCAA Tournament champions
1985
NCAA Tournament Final Four
1939, 1971*, 1985, 2009
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
1939, 1949, 1962, 1970, 1971*, 1978, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1988, 2006, 2009
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1951, 1955, 1962, 1964, 1970, 1971*, 1972, 1978, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1988, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009
NCAA Tournament appearances
1939, 1949, 1951, 1955, 1962, 1964, 1969, 1970, 1971*, 1972, 1978, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014
*vacated by NCAA
Conference tournament champions
1978 (A10), 1980 (A10), 1995
Conference regular season champions
1978 (A10), 1979 (A10), 1980 (A10), 1982, 1983, 1997, 2006, 2014

Villanova University's men's basketball team has competed since the 1920–21 season. Nicknamed the "Wildcats", Villanova is a member of the Big East Conference and the Philadelphia Big Five. The Villanova Wildcats have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 33 times, the 8th highest total in NCAA history. They made the Final Four in 1939, 1971, 1985 and 2009, and were National Champions in 1985. Villanova has appeared in the NIT 17 times, winning in 1994, and won the Big East Tournament in 1995. Villanova entered the 2007-2008 season with an all-time winning percentage of .637, placing the Wildcats 20th among all NCAA Division I basketball programs.[1]

Early years (1920–1936)[edit]

Villanova began its varsity basketball program in 1920. Michael Saxe coached for six seasons, from 1920–1926, compiling a 64–30 record (.681). John Cashman coached three seasons, from 1926–1929, compiling a 21–26 record (.447). George "Doc" Jacobs coached seven seasons, from 1929–1936, and had a 62–56 record (.525).

The team played its first game in 1920 in Alumni Hall on Villanova's campus, beating Catholic University 43–40. In the early years, Villanova's home courts were Alumni Hall and West Catholic High School. The Wildcats moved into the Villanova Field House (now known as the Jake Nevin Field House) in 1932. Villanova also played many home games at the Palestra on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania beginning in 1929. The Wildcats played home games in both the Villanova Field House and the Palestra until 1986.

Al Severance era (1936–1961)[edit]

Alexander Severance coached Villanova for 25 seasons, from 1936 to 1961. It was under the leadership of Coach Severance that Villanova's basketball program rose to prominence. Severance compiled a 413–201 record (.673).

The 1938-39 team won the first ever NCAA Tournament game, which put them in the inaugural Final Four. Severance led the Wildcats to the NCAA Tournament again in 1949, 1951, and 1955. Villanova earned NIT bids in 1959 and 1960.

The most storied player in Villanova history, Paul Arizin, played during this era. Severance discovered Arizin, already a Villanova student, playing basketball in the Villanova Fieldhouse. Arizin holds the Villanova record for most points in a game (85), and is credited with inventing the jump shot and was the 1949 College Player of the Year. Other notable players from the Severance era include Joe Lord, Larry Hennessy, Bob Schafer and George Raveling.

Coincidentally, Al Severance died in 1985 on the same day that Villanova upset Georgetown University and Patrick Ewing to take the NCAA basketball championship.

1939 Final Four[edit]

The inaugural NCAA Tournament featured eight teams from throughout the country. Villanova, representing the Middle Atlantic States, beat Brown, representative of the New England States, 43–40 before a crowd of 3,500 at the Palestra. The following night, the Wildcats lost to Ohio State 53–36 in the Eastern Division Championship.

Jack Kraft era (1961–1973)[edit]

Jack Kraft coached Villanova for 12 years, from 1961 through 1973. He compiled a 238–95 record (.715). Kraft led Villanova to the NCAA Tournament six times, and five times to the NIT. Only once did Kraft's teams fail to earn a post-season bid, in his final season. The 1971 team, led by Howard Porter, reached the NCAA Championship game, and lost to UCLA at the height of the UCLA dynasty.

Notable players during the Jack Kraft era include: Chris Ford, Tom Ingelsby, Wali Jones, Bill Melchionni, Howard Porter, Jim Washington, and Hubie White.

1971 NCAA Finalist[edit]

On March 27, 1971, Villanova made its first appearance in an NCAA basketball tournament championship game. The unheralded Wildcats took on the legendary John Wooden and his mighty UCLA Bruins. The 28–1 UCLA squad featured Sidney Wicks, Curtis Rowe, Henry Bibby, and Steve Patterson. Going into the title game, the Bruins had won six of the previous seven NCAA championships, including the previous four.

Jack Kraft's Villanova squad, nicknamed the "Iron Men", was made up of just nine players. Led by Howard Porter, Clarence Smith, Hank Siemiontkowski, Chris Ford, Tom Ingelsby, Bob Gohl, Mike Daley, John Fox and Joe McDowell. Villanova amassed a 27–6 record, including a shocking 90–47 victory over a powerhouse Penn squad.

Villanova fought from behind for most of the game, twice cutting the lead to three in the final minutes. Villanova lost by six, 68–62. The six-point loss was the narrowest spread of UCLA's seven consecutive victories in NCAA title games.

Despite the loss, Villanova's Howard Porter was named the Tournament's Most Outstanding Player. Porter was later stripped of the award and the team's NCAA victories were vacated after it was discovered that Porter had violated NCAA rules because he had signed a professional contract with the Pittsburgh Condors of the American Basketball Association during the middle of his senior year.

Rollie Massimino era (1973–1992)[edit]

During Rollie Massimino's tenure, the Villanova Wildcats abandoned their traditional independent status by joining the newly formed Eastern Eight Conference in 1975. In 1980, the 'Cats moved into the new Big East Conference, along with Georgetown, St. John's, and Syracuse. The 1980s were the golden age of the Big East, highlighted by the 1985 NCAA Tournament, when Villanova, Georgetown, and St. John's reached the Final Four.

Massimino's teams had tremendous success in the NCAA Tournament, usually in an underdog role. Coach Massimino led the Wildcats to the NCAA Tournament eleven times, winning in 1985. His teams reached the Elite Eight five times in an eleven-year span: 1978, 1982, 1983, 1985, and 1988. Coach Massimino's teams were well-prepared for the Tournament, always playing a difficult schedule, and playing tenacious defense. Massimino lost their opening game in the NCAA Tournament only once, to Shaquille O'Neill and Chris Jackson-led LSU in 1990.

Massimino coached for 19 seasons at Villanova, compiling a record of 357–241 (.596). In the NCAA Tournament, Massimino had a 20–10 record (.667).

Notable players from the Massimino era include Alex Bradley, Stewart Granger, Keith Herron, Dwayne McClain, Harold Jensen, Ed Pinckney, John Pinone, Harold Pressley, Rory Sparrow, and Doug West.

In 1976, the Wildcats played their first game in the Spectrum in Philadelphia. Because of the greater seating capacity, the 'Cats generally played a few home games each year at the Spectrum until the opening of the Wells Fargo Center. Villanova christened its current home court, the Pavilion, with a 64–62 victory over Maryland on February 1, 1986.

1985 National Champions[edit]

In 1985, under the direction of coach Rollie Massimino, the men's basketball team completed one of the most surprising runs in NCAA tournament history by winning the national championship in the first year of the 64-team field. The eighth-seeded Wildcats (unranked in the final AP poll) beat Dayton (at Dayton), top-seeded Michigan, Maryland and second-seeded North Carolina to win the Southeast Regional en route to the Final Four in Lexington, Kentucky. After defeating 2-seed Memphis State in the national semifinals, Villanova met defending champion and ten-point-favorite Georgetown, led by Patrick Ewing, in the title game on April Fool's Day.

Top-seeded Georgetown had beaten conference rival Villanova twice during the regular season, and had reached the title game with tenacious defense, which gave up less than 40% of their opponents' shots from the field in both the regular season and the postseason. Before the championship game, Massimino told his team they would have to play a perfect game in order to beat Georgetown. In perhaps the greatest shooting performance in NCAA history, the Wildcats went 22-of-28 from the field to convert a blistering 78.6% of their shots, including a second half where they missed only one basket. The Hoyas hung tough, converting 55% of their 53 attempts, but were unable to overcome the astounding shooting performance as Villanova won 66–64 to claim the NCAA championship. The Wildcat squad remains the only eight-seed and the lowest overall seed in tournament history to win the championship, and their overall team shooting percentage remains an NCAA tournament record for a single game. The game is often cited among the greatest upsets in college basketball history. Ed Pinckney, who shot 5-of-7 and had 16 points in the game, was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player.

In an ironic coincidence, Al Severance, Villanova's coach for 25 years from 1936-1961, died on April Fools' Day, April 1, 1985, which was the same day that Villanova won the NCAA Championship.

Steve Lappas era (1992–2001)[edit]

The Steve Lappas era was marked by extraordinailry strong regular seasons, including teams that won Villanova's only NIT and Big East Tournament Championships. However, Lappas' teams are also remembered for their underachieving performances in NCAA Tournaments.

Lappas compiled a respectable record of 174–110 (.613) during his years at Villanova. The 1994 and 1995 teams, led by Kerry Kittles, Jason Lawson, and Alvin Williams, won the NIT and Big East Tournaments, respectively. However, five nights after their victory in the Big East Championship, the 1995 Wildcats lost a triple-overtime thriller to underdog Old Dominion on St. Patrick's Night in Albany, NY in a game many Villanova fans consider the most painful loss in Villanova history.

Under Coach Lappas, Villanova reached the NCAA Tournament in 1995, 1996, 1997, and 1999, compiling a 2–4 record.

Notable players in the Lappas era include Michael Bradley, Kerry Kittles, Jason Lawson, Tim Thomas, and Alvin Williams.

Villanova began playing a few major home games at the Wells Fargo Center beginning in 1996. Villanova's first game in the new arena was a December 1996 loss to the Duke Blue Devils.Wells Fargo Center was known as the CoreStates Center, the First Union Center, and the Wachovia Center before it adopted the Wells Fargo Center name.

1994 NIT Champions[edit]

On March 30, 1994, Villanova became the 15th school to win both NCAA and NIT Championships when the Wildcats defeated Vanderbilt 80–73 to win the NIT title. The Wildcats were led by Jonathan Haynes, who scored 19 points, and Kerry Kittles, who posted 18. Eric Eberz added 16 points and seven rebounds. Haynes and Kittles earned spots on the All-Tournament team for their efforts.

Jay Wright era (2001–present)[edit]

Jay Wright was named Villanova's coach in 2001. As a former Rollie Massimino assistant, Wright was well-acquainted with Villanova. Prior to his appointment at Villanova, Wright was head coach at Hofstra.

Villanova earned a post-season tournament berth in each of Wright's initial ten seasons as Villanova head coach. The Wildcats played in the NIT in 2002, 2003, and 2004, and in the NCAA Tournament in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011. During Wright's tenure, Villanova has compiled a 12–7 record in the NCAA Tournament. Four of Wright's seven NCAA Tournament losses at Villanova were to the eventual National Champion. The highlight of his tenure was an amazing run to the 2009 Final Four when Villanova beat Pittsburgh in the Elite 8 on a coast to coast buzzer beater shot by team captain Scottie Reynolds. Villanova subsequently lost in national semifinals to eventual NCAA Champion North Carolina.

The struggling finishes to both the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons were highlighted by losing streaks down the stretch followed by some poorly played NCAA games where Villanova barely beat Robert Morris in overtime and took losses at the hands of St Mary's (2010) and George Mason (2011) in the NCAA Tournament. Villanova had a rebuilding season with a disappointing 13-19 record in 2011-12 season and they missed an NCAA bid after 7 consecutive appearances in the Tournament. It was also the first season that Jay Wright did not lead the program into any postseason tournament.

Notable players during the Jay Wright era include Curtis Sumpter, Randy Foye, Allan Ray, Kyle Lowry, Scottie Reynolds, Corey Fisher, Jason Fraser, Will Sheridan, Corey Stokes, Malik Wayns, James Taj Bell, and Dante Cunningham.

2004–05 season[edit]

Under coach Jay Wright, Villanova's men's basketball team reached the 2005 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16, defeating New Mexico and Florida before losing to #1 seed and eventual champion North Carolina by one point. Junior Forward Curtis Sumpter was injured in the Florida game and did not return to the court until the 2006-07 season. There is controversy surrounding a disputed traveling call against Allan Ray made in the closing seconds of the UNC game. With under a minute left and Villanova down by three, Ray drove and made a shot. There was contact with a UNC defender and a whistle. Most assumed the whistle signified a foul on Carolina, giving Ray a chance to tie the game with the resultant free-throw. Incredibly, the officials ruled that Ray committed a traveling violation prior to taking the shot, negating the basket, and rendering Kyle Lowry's buzzer beating 3 pointer a mere footnote to a painful loss.

2005–06 season[edit]

Led by senior guards Randy Foye and Allan Ray, the Villanova men's basketball team began the 2005-2006 year ranked #4 in the major polls from USA Today and the Associated Press. Having lost only three regular season games, the Wildcats enjoyed a #1 seed in the 2006 tournament—their first. The Wildcats' wins over Monmouth, Arizona, and Boston College brought them to the Elite Eight for the first time since 1988. Villanova's 75–62 loss in Minneapolis to eventual champion Florida ended the team's run for a second NCAA championship in the Regional Final. The loss to Florida was the second consecutive year that Villanova was eliminated in the NCAA Tournament by the eventual national champion. The Wildcats' 28 wins during the 2006 campaign represent the second most victories for any Villanova Men's Basketball team.

2006–07 season[edit]

Wright's 2006–2007 team was composed mainly of freshmen and sophomores who, at times, struggled to mesh. The Wildcats improved throughout the season, due in large part to the emergence of freshman Scottie Reynolds. Villanova finished the 2006–07 season with a record of 22–11. The Wildcats earned an at-large bid to the 2007 NCAA Tournament, where they lost in the second round to the Kentucky Wildcats. Villanova's 2006–07 free throw percentage of .781 led the NCAA, and set a Villanova season record.[2]

2007–08 season[edit]

The 2007–08 campaign was an erratic one for the young Wildcats, a team with no seniors. After a promising 9–1 start, Villanova had a rough start to its Big East season. In mid-season, the Wildcats lost five consecutive games by double digits and lost 6 of 7 games during a 3-week span in the middle of the season, as the freshmen struggled to adjust to the college game, and the experienced players encountered difficulties in adjusting to leadership positions. In February and March, as the players became more comfortable within Coach Wright's system, and with improved defense, the team began to win.

A win against Syracuse in the Big East Tournament was good enough for the Wildcats to secure one of the final at-large bids to the NCAA Tournament. Villanova proved it was worthy of the bid when an upset over Clemson and a victory over Siena put them in the final 16 teams in the tournament, where they lost to eventual National Champion Kansas.

2008–09 season[edit]

Most notable in the 2008-09 season was the rise to prominence of senior forward Dante Cunningham. Cunningham averaged 16.1 points per game, an increase of nearly 6 points over the previous season. He also managed to average 7.5 rebounds, 1.2 blocks, and 1.2 steals per game.[3] Cunningham was honored as the Big East Most Improved Player.[4] His teammate, tenacious sophomore guard Corey Fisher, was also honored as the Big East Sixth Man of the Year for his contributions off the bench.[4]

The Wildcats finished the regular season with a mark of 26–7, earning a school record for most regular season victories. They lost their final regular season game to the Louisville Cardinals, 69–55, in the fourth round, or semi-finals of the Big East Tournament.[5] The Wildcats began the NCAA Tournament at the Wachovia Center, a secondary venue for home games. They survived an early scare by American[5] to handily beat two of college basketball's most prestigious programs, UCLA and Duke, in the rounds of 32 and 16 by a combined margin of 43 points.[6][7]

Villanova won a very close match up against number 1 seed Pittsburgh in the Elite 8 round of the tournament, with guard Scottie Reynolds racing down the court to make a layup with only 0.5 seconds left. Pitt took the final shot, which bounced off the backboard to end the game. The last-second basket by Reynolds was widely hailed as one of the most exciting plays of that year's tournament, with Sports Illustrated's Seth Davis calling the victory "one of the great games in NCAA tournament history".[8] Villanova advanced to the Final Four where they faced the North Carolina Tar Heels. Villanova fell to the Tar Heels in the National Semifinals at Ford Field in Detroit, MI, by a final score of 83–69.[9] This would be the fourth time in five years that Villanova's tournament ouster would be by the eventual National Champion.

The Wildcat's record of 30–8 broke a previous high for most victories in a season, a distinction previously held by the 2005–06 Wildcats squad. The senior class of 2009, composed of forwards Dante Cunningham, Shane Clark, Dwayne Anderson and Frank Tchuisi, earned the distinction of being the winningest senior class in school history.[10]

2009–10 season[edit]

The Wildcats enjoyed another highly successful regular season, finishing with a record of 24–7 and earning a #2 Seed in the NCAA Tournament. They lost in the first round of the Big East Tournament to Marquette and required overtime to defeat 15th seeded Robert Morris University in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats were defeated in the 2nd round by the 10th seeded St. Mary's Gaels.

Scottie Reynolds ended his career as the second-leading scorer in Villanova history with 2,222 points, 21 points short of breaking Kerry Kittles's all-time record. He finished his College career with 472 assists and 203 steals. Reynolds was named to the 2010 AP All-American 1st team, but was not selected in the NBA draft.

Player Honors[edit]

All-America

National Freshman of the Year

National Coach of the Year

Big East Player of the Year

Big East Rookie of the Year

Big East Coach of the Year

Big East Sixth Man of the Year

Big East Most Improved Player of the Year

Postseason[edit]

NCAA Tournament history[edit]

Villanova has appeared in 34 NCAA Tournaments, beginning with the first in 1939. The Wildcats have amassed a Tournament record of 49–32 (.605), and were the National Champions in 1985. Villanova has won as the underdog (based on Tournament seeding) 15 times, more than any other program.[12] Villanova is one of only two programs (the other being Ohio State) that has played in the NCAA Tournament in every decade since the 1930s.

Opponent Result Score Site City Round
2014 - 2 Seed
Milwaukee W 73–53 First Niagara Center Buffalo, NY Second Round
Connecticut L 65–77 First Niagara Center Buffalo, NY Third Round
2013 - 9 Seed
North Carolina L 71–78 Sprint Center Kansas City, MO Second Round
2011 - 9 Seed
George Mason L 57–61 Quicken Loans Arena Cleveland, OH Second Round
2010 - 2 Seed
Robert Morris W 73–70 OT Dunkin' Donuts Center Providence, RI First Round
St. Mary's L 68–75 Dunkin' Donuts Center Providence, RI Second Round
2009 - 3 Seed - FINAL FOUR
American W 80–67 Wachovia Center Philadelphia, PA First Round
UCLA W 89–69 Wachovia Center Philadelphia, PA Second Round
Duke W 77–54 TD Banknorth Garden Boston, MA Regional Semifinals
Pittsburgh W 78–76 TD Banknorth Garden Boston, MA Regional Finals
North Carolina L 69–83 Ford Field Detroit, MI National Semifinals
2008 - 12 Seed - Sweet 16
Clemson W 75–69 St. Pete Times Forum Tampa, FL First Round
Siena W 84–72 St. Pete Times Forum Tampa, FL Second Round
Kansas L 57–72 Ford Field Detroit, MI Regional Semifinals
2007 - 9 Seed
Kentucky L 58–67 United Center Chicago, IL First Round
2006 - 1 Seed - Elite 8
Monmouth W 58–45 Wachovia Center Philadelphia, PA First Round
Boston College W 60–59 OT Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome Minneapolis, MN Regional Semifinals
Florida L 62–75 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome Minneapolis, MN Regional Finals
2005 - 5 Seed - Sweet 16
New Mexico W 55–47 Gaylord Entertainment Center Nashville, TN First Round
Florida W 76–65 Gaylord Entertainment Center Nashville, TN Second Round
North Carolina L 67–66 Carrier Dome Syracuse, NY Regional Semifinals
1999 - 8 Seed
Mississippi L 70–72 Bradley Center Milwaukee, WI First Round
1997 - 4 Seed
Long Island W 101–91 Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum Winston-Salem, NC First Round
California L 68–75 Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum Winston-Salem, NC Second Round
1996 - 3 Seed
Portland W 92–56 Bradley Center Milwaukee, WI First Round
Louisville L 64–68 Bradley Center Milwaukee, WI Second Round
1995 - 3 Seed
Old Dominion L 81–89 3OT Pepsi Arena Albany, NY First Round
1991 - 9 Seed
Princeton W 50–48 Carrier Dome Syracuse, NY First Round
North Carolina L 69–84 Carrier Dome Syracuse, NY Second Round
1990 - 12 Seed
LSU L 63–70 Thompson-Boling Arena Knoxville, TN First Round
1988 - 6 Seed - Elite 8
Arkansas W 82–74 Riverfront Coliseum Cincinnati, OH First Round
Illinois W 66–63 Riverfront Coliseum Cincinnati, OH Second Round
Kentucky W 80–74 BJCC Birmingham, AL Regional Semifinals
Oklahoma L 59–78 BJCC Birmingham, AL Regional Finals
1986 - 10 Seed
Virginia Tech W 71–62 LSU Assembly Center Baton Rouge, LA First Round
Georgia Tech L 61–66 LSU Assembly Center Baton Rouge, LA Second Round
1985 - 8 Seed - NCAA CHAMPIONS
Dayton W 51–49 University of Dayton Arena Dayton, OH First Round
Michigan W 59–55 University of Dayton Arena Dayton, OH Second Round
Maryland W 46–43 BJCC Birmingham, AL Regional Semifinals
North Carolina W 56–44 BJCC Birmingham, AL Regional Finals
Memphis State W 52–45 Rupp Arena Lexington, KY National Semifinals
Georgetown W 66–64 Rupp Arena Lexington, KY National Championship
1984 - 7 Seed
Marshall W 84–72 The MECCA Milwaukee, WI First Round
Illinois L 56–64 The MECCA Milwaukee, WI Second Round
1983 - 3 Seed - Elite 8
Bye First Round
Lamar W 60–56 The Summit Houston, TX Second Round
Iowa W 55–54 Kemper Arena Kansas City, MO Regional Semifinals
Houston L 71–89 Kemper Arena Kansas City, MO Regional Finals
1982 - 3 Seed - Elite 8
Bye First Round
Northeastern W 76–72 3OT Nassau Coliseum Uniondale, NY Second Round
Memphis State W 70–66 OT Reynolds Coliseum Raleigh, NC Regional Semifinals
North Carolina L 60–70 Reynolds Coliseum Raleigh, NC Regional Finals
1981 - 9 Seed
Houston W 90–72 Charlotte Coliseum Charlotte, NC First Round
Virginia L 50–54 Charlotte Coliseum Charlotte, NC Second Round
1980 - 8 Seed
Marquette W 77–59 Providence Civic Center Providence, RI First Round
Syracuse L 83–97 Providence Civic Center Providence, RI Second Round
1978 - Elite 8
La Salle W 103–97 Palestra Philadelphia, PA First Round
Indiana W 61–60 Providence Civic Center Providence, RI Regional Semifinals
Duke L 72–90 Providence Civic Center Providence, RI Regional Finals
1972 - Sweet 16
East Carolina W 85–70 Jadwin Gymnasium Princeton, NJ First Round
Pennsylvania L 67–78 WVU Coliseum Morgantown, WV Regional Semifinals
South Carolina L 78–90 WVU Coliseum Morgantown, WV Consolation
1971 - NCAA RUNNER-UP
Saint Joseph's W 93–75 Palestra Philadelphia, PA First Round
Fordham W 85–75 Reynolds Coliseum Raleigh, NC Regional Semifinals
Pennsylvania W 90–47 Reynolds Coliseum Raleigh, NC Regional Finals
Western Kentucky W 92–89 Astrodome Houston, TX National Semifinals
UCLA L 62–68 Astrodome Houston, TX National Championship
1970 - Elite 8
Temple W 77–69 Palestra Philadelphia, PA First Round
Niagara W 98–73 Carolina Coliseum Columbia, SC Regional Semifinals
St. Bonaventure L 74–94 Carolina Coliseum Columbia, SC Regional Finals
1969
Davidson L 61–75 Reynolds Coliseum Raleigh, NC First Round
1964 - Final 16
Providence W 77–66 First Round
Duke L 73–87 Regional Semifinals
Princeton W 74–62 Consolation
1962 - Final 8
West Virginia W 90–75 Palestra Philadelphia, PA First Round
NYU W 79–70 Cole Field House College Park, MD Regional Semifinals
Wake Forest L 69–79 Cole Field House College Park, MD Regional Finals
1955 - Final 16
Duke W 74–73 Madison Square Garden New York, NY First Round
Canisius L 71–73 Palestra Philadelphia, PA Regional Semifinals
Princeton W 64–57 Palestra Philadelphia, PA Consolation
1951 - Final 16
North Carolina State L 62–67 Regional Semifinals
1949 - Final 8
Kentucky L 72–85 Madison Square Garden New York, NY Regional Finals
Yale W 78–67 Madison Square Garden New York, NY Consolation
1939 - NCAA FINAL FOUR
Brown W 42–30 Palestra Philadelphia, PA Regional Finals
Ohio State L 36–53 Palestra Philadelphia, PA National Semifinals

NIT history[edit]

The Wildcats have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) 17 times. Their combined record is 24–17. They were NIT Champions in 1994.

Year Round Opponent Result
1959 First Round St. John's L 67–75
1960 First Round
Quarterfinals
Detroit
Utah State
W 88–86
L 72–73
1963 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
3rd Place Game
DePaul
Wichita State
Canisius
Marquette
W 63–51
W 54–53
L 46–61
L 58–66
1965 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
3rd Place Game
Manhattan
NYU
St. John's
W 73–71
W 91–69
L 51–55
1966 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
3rd Place Game
St. John's
Boston College
NYU
Army
W 63–61
W 86–85
L 63–78
W 76–65
1967 First Round Marshall L 68–70
1968 First Round
Quarterfinals
Wyoming
Kansas
W 77–66
L 49–55
1977 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
3rd Place Game
Old Dominion
Massachusetts
St. Bonaventure
Alabama
W 71–68
W 81–71
L 82–86
W 102–89
1987 First Round La Salle L 84–86
1989 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Saint Peter's
Penn State
Michigan State
W 76–56
W 76–67
L 63–70
1992 First Round Virginia L 80–83
1994 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Finals
Canisius
Duquesne
Xavier
Siena
Vanderbilt
W 103–79
W 82–66
W 76–74
W 66–58
W 80–73
2000 First Round
Second Round
Delaware
Kent State
W 72–63
L 67–81
2001 First Round Minnesota L 78–87
2002 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Manhattan
Louisiana Tech
Temple
W 84–69
W 67–64
L 57–63
2003 Opening Round Siena L 59–74
2004 First Round
Second Round
Quarterfinals
Drexel
Virginia
Rutgers
W 85–70
W 73–63
L 60–72

Year-to-year history[edit]

colspan="6" style="text-align:left;"| Total Overall Record:

Season Head Coach Overall Record Conf. Record Postseason
1920-21 Michael Saxe 8-7 - -
1921-22 Michael Saxe 11-4 - -
1922-23 Michael Saxe 10-6 - -
1923-24 Michael Saxe 14-7 - -
1924-25 Michael Saxe 10-1 - -
1925-26 Michael Saxe 10-6 - -
1926-27 John Cashman 11-7 - -
1927-28 John Cashman 4-11 - -
1928-29 John Cashman 6-8 - -
1929-30 George Jacobs 11-6 - -
1930-31 George Jacobs 7-13 - -
1931-32 George Jacobs 7-11 - -
1932-33 George Jacobs 9-4 - -
1933-34 George Jacobs 9-3 - -
1934-35 George Jacobs 13-7 - -
1935-36 George Jacobs 6-12 - -
1936-37 Alexander Severance 15-8 - -
1937-38 Alexander Severance 25-5 - -
1938-39 Alexander Severance 20-5 - NCAA FINAL FOUR
1939-40 Alexander Severance 17-2 - -
1940-41 Alexander Severance 13-3 - -
1941-42 Alexander Severance 13-9 - -
1942-43 Alexander Severance 19-2 - -
1943-44 Alexander Severance 9-11 - -
1944-45 Alexander Severance 6-11 - -
1945-46 Alexander Severance 10-13 - -
1946-47 Alexander Severance 17-7 - -
1947-48 Alexander Severance 15-9 - -
1948-49 Alexander Severance 23-4 - NCAA Final 8
1949-50 Alexander Severance 25-4 - -
1950-51 Alexander Severance 25-7 - NCAA Final 16
1951-52 Alexander Severance 19-8 - -
1952-53 Alexander Severance 19-8 - -
1953-54 Alexander Severance 20-11 - -
1954-55 Alexander Severance 18-10 - -
1955-56 Alexander Severance 14-12 - NCAA Final 16
1956-57 Alexander Severance 10-15 - -
1957-58 Alexander Severance 12-11 - -
1958-59 Alexander Severance 18-7 - NIT First round
1959-60 Alexander Severance 20-6 - NIT Final 8
1960-61 Alexander Severance 11-13 - -
1961-62 Jack Kraft 21-7 - NCAA Final 8
1962-63 Jack Kraft 19-10 - -
1963-64 Jack Kraft 24-4 - NCAA Final 16
1964-65 Jack Kraft 23-5 - -
1965-66 Jack Kraft 18-11 - -
1966-67 Jack Kraft 17-9 - -
1967-68 Jack Kraft 19-9 - -
1968-69 Jack Kraft 21-5 - NCAA First Round
1969-70 Jack Kraft 22-7 - NCAA Final 8
1970-71 Jack Kraft 20-8 - NCAA RUNNER-UP
1971-72 Jack Kraft 20-8 - NCAA Final 16
1972-73 Jack Kraft 11-14 -
1973-74 Rollie Massimino 7-19 -
1974-75 Rollie Massimino 9-18 -
1975-76 Rollie Massimino 16-11 -
1976-77 Rollie Massimino 23-10 -
1977-78 Rollie Massimino 23-9 - NCAA Final 8
1978-79 Rollie Massimino 13-13 -
1979-80 Rollie Massimino 23-8 - Second Round
1980-81 Rollie Massimino 20-11 - Second Round
1981-82 Rollie Massimino 24-8 - NCAA Final 8
1982-83 Rollie Massimino 24-8 - NCAA Final 8
1983-84 Rollie Massimino 19-12 - Second Round
1984-85 Rollie Massimino 25-10 - NCAA CHAMPIONS
1985-86 Rollie Massimino 23-14 - Second Round
1986-87 Rollie Massimino 15-16 -
1987-88 Rollie Massimino 24-13 - NCAA Final 8
1988-89 Rollie Massimino 18-16 -
1989-90 Rollie Massimino 18-15 - NCAA First Round
1990-91 Rollie Massimino 17-15 - NCAA Second Round
1991-92 Rollie Massimino 14-15 -
1992-93 Steve Lappas 8-19 3-15
1993-94 Steve Lappas 20-12 10-8 NIT CHAMPIONS
1994-95 Steve Lappas 25-8 14-4 NCAA First round
1995-96 Steve Lappas 26-7 14-4 NCAA Second round
1996-97 Steve Lappas 24-10 12-6 NCAA Second round
1997-98 Steve Lappas 12-17 8-10
1998-99 Steve Lappas 21-11 10-8 NCAA First round
1999-00 Steve Lappas 20-13 8-8 NIT Second round
2000-01 Steve Lappas 18-13 8-8 NIT First round
2001-02 Jay Wright 19-13 7-9 NIT Second round
2002-03 Jay Wright 15-16 8-8 NIT First round
2003-04 Jay Wright 18-17 6-10 NIT First round
2004-05 Jay Wright 24-8 11-5 NCAA Final 16
2005-06 Jay Wright 28-5 14-2 NCAA Elite 8
2006-07 Jay Wright 22-11 9-7 NCAA 64
2007-08 Jay Wright 22-13 9-9 NCAA Final 16
2008-09 Jay Wright 30-8 13-5 NCAA FINAL FOUR
2009-10 Jay Wright 25-8 13-5 NCAA 32
2010-11 Jay Wright 21-12 9-9 NCAA 64
2011-12 Jay Wright 13-19 5-13 -
2012-13 Jay Wright 20-14 10-8 NCAA 64

Basketball Hall of Fame[edit]

Paul Arizin '50, inducted 1978.

Retired numbers and jerseys[edit]

Villanova honors outstanding former players, coaches, and others by retiring their numbers or jerseys. For those honored, a replica jersey is hung in the rafters of the Pavilion. Uniform numbers of retired jerseys remain in circulation, while retired numbers are no longer used. Paul Arizin's #11 is the only retired number. As of 2011, 19 have been honored with a retired number or jersey, including 14 players, four coaches, and longtime trainer Jake Nevin.[13]

The honorees include:

Al Severance, Coach.

Jack Kraft, Coach.

Rollie Massimino, Coach (1973–92). Jersey retired in 2005.

#1 Jake Nevin, longtime trainer. Jersey retired in 1984.

#2 Randy Foye (2003–06). Jersey retired in 2011.

#11 Paul Arizin (1947–50). Number retired in 1994.

#14 Larry Hennessy

#14 Hubie White (1959–62). Jersey retired in 2001.

#24 Wali Jones (1961–64). Jersey retired in 1995.

#24 Tom Ingelsby (1970–73). Jersey retired in 2006.

#25 Bill Melchionni (1963–66). Jersey retired in 1995.

#30 Kerry Kittles (1992–96). Jersey retired in 1998.

#33 Keith Herron

#42 Chris Ford (1969–72). Jersey retired in 2006.

#45 John Pinone (1979–83). Jersey retired in 1995.

#54 Howard Porter (1968–71). Jersey retired in 1997.

#54 Ed Pinckney (1981–85).

Villanova career records[edit]

Games Played: Scottie Reynolds - 139 games /// Doug West & Gary Massey - 138 games
Rebounds: Howard Porter - 1,325 rebounds
Assists: Kenny Wilson - 627 assists
Steals: Kerry Kittles - 277 steals
Blocks: Jason Lawson - 375 blocks
Points Scored: Kerry Kittles - 2,243 points

Villanovans in the NBA/ABA[edit]

Villanova's All-Time NBA/ABA Roster[edit]

Malik Allen '00, Paul Arizin '50, Alex Bradley '81, Michael Bradley '01, Thomas Brennan '52, John Celestand '99, Dante Cunningham '09, Chris Ford '72, Randy Foye '06, Stewart Granger '83, Larry Hennessy '53, Keith Herron '78, Tom Hoover '61, Tom Ingelsby '72, Wali Jones '64, Kerry Kittles '96, Herman Red Klotz '44, Jason Lawson '97, Kyle Lowry '06* (left for NBA after soph season), Dwayne McClain '85, Bill Melchionni '66, James Mooney '53, Richie Moore '64, Fran O'Hanlon '70, John Olive '77, Ed Pinckney '85, John Pinone '83, Howard Porter '71, Harold Pressley '86, Sherwin Raiken '50, Allan Ray '06, Bob Schafer '55, Rory Sparrow '80, Arthur Spector '41, Tim Thomas '97, Maalik Wayns '12(left after Junior season) Jim Washington '65, Doug West '89, Hubie White '62, Alvin Williams '97.

Members of Professional Championship Teams[edit]

  • 1948 Baltimore Bullets (BBA) - Herman "Red" Klotz
  • 1956 Philadelphia Warriors (NBA) - Paul Arizin, Larry Hennessy
  • 1967 Philadelphia 76ers (NBA) - Wali Jones, Bill Melchionni
  • 1974/1976 New Jersey Nets (ABA) - Bill Melchionni
  • 1981 Boston Celtics (NBA) - Chris Ford
  • 2000 Los Angeles Lakers (NBA) - John Celestand

Villanova Players Currently in the NBA[edit]

Villanova Records in the NBA[edit]

Games Played: Rory Sparrow - 836 games
Minutes Played: Paul Arizin - 24,897 minutes
Rebounds: Jim Washington - 6,637 rebounds
Assists: Rory Sparrow - 4,192 assists
Steals: Chris Ford - 1,152 steals
Blocks: Ed Pinckney - 435 blocks
Points Scored: Paul Arizin - 16,266 points

Villanovans Drafted[edit]

Rivals[edit]

Big East[edit]

Most Villanovans count Georgetown as their most intense rivalry, having played a historic NCAA Championship game and many competitive Big East Tournament and regular season games against the Hoyas. Other rivals from the Big East include Providence (an eastern rivalry which predates the BE Conference), St. John's, Syracuse, and Connecticut who were all founding members of the Conference.

Big Five[edit]

Villanova along with St. Josephs, La Salle, Temple and Penn banded together to create the Philadelphia Big-5 in 1954-55. From that date until the mid-1970s all Big 5 games were contested at the Palestra (cap. 9,208) on Penn's campus. The Five competed in a round-robin City Series. Additionally, all participated in numerous doubleheaders against non-Big 5 opponents. Most games were televised locally on WPHL-TV, broadcast by Harry Kalas.

Villanova's bitterest Big 5 rival is Saint Joseph's University, in what has become known as the Holy War. See main article.

Traditions[edit]

Villanova basketball athletes traditionally remain enrolled four years, graduate, and go on to enjoy post-college success. Villanova has never had to fire a head basketball coach (men's or women's) for any reason. Villanova has won more NCAA tournament games as a lower seed than any school. Villanova won what has been called the greatest college basketball game ever played, defeating Georgetown 66-64 on April 1, 1985 to win the NCAA National Championship.

Songs[edit]

V for Villanova is the Wildcats' fight song. Other Villanova songs include March of the Wildcats.

Streamers[edit]

Villanova had a tradition of throwing paper streamers in the school colors of blue and white onto the basketball court at home games, particularly Big Five games, after the first Wildcat basket. This tradition was shared by other Big Five basketball teams, and at Big Five games, streamers were thrown by both teams following their team's first field goal. The tradition was stopped in the late 1980s after the NCAA declared that throwing streamers would result in a technical foul.

Hoops Mania[edit]

Hoops Mania has been an annual tradition to celebrate the start of basketball season. It was originally held in the Jake Nevin Fieldhouse for students and has since grown larger after the success of the 2005-06 season. For the past two years it has been open to the public and students.

Tony Yayo At Villanova Hoops Mania 06'

The 2006-07 Hoops Mania was most noted for having special guest appearances by G-Unit members 50 Cent and Tony Yayo. The Pavilion was brought to their feet and the crowd erupted as the two rap artists entered.

The 2008 Hoops Mania featured a performance by T-Pain.

Public Address Announcer Kevin Scholla pumped up the crowd at four Hoops Mania events. He also got Nova Nation going during every home game on campus, at the Wells Fargo Center (Philadelphia) (formerly Wachovia Center), and at the Wachovia Spectrum from 2007-2011. With Scholla behind the microphone, Villanova went 33-0 at the Pavilion. The Wildcats promptly lost at the Pavilion the very first season after Scholla left. The Fans especially seemed to like his game calls for Dante Cunningham, Antonio Pena, and Corey Stokes.[15]

Hoops Mania 2011 had a guest appearance by Drake.

References[edit]

  1. ^ 2007 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball All-Time Winningest Teams
  2. ^ http://villanova.cstv.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/051007aaa.html
  3. ^ Fri8:00 PM ET (1987-04-22). "Dante Cunningham Stats, News, Videos, Highlights, Pictures, Bio - Minnesota Timberwolves - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  4. ^ a b "Cunningham and Fisher Honored by BIG EAST - Villanova University Official Athletic Site". Villanova.com. 2009-03-09. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  5. ^ a b CBSSports.com wire reports. "NCAA College Basketball Recap - Villanova Wildcats at Louisville Cardinals - Mar 13, 2009". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  6. ^ Maaddi, Rob (2009-03-22). "'Nova reaches round of 16 with 89-69 win over UCLA". Usatoday.Com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  7. ^ Gardiner, Andy (2009-03-28). "Villanova vexes Duke, storms into Elite Eight with 77-54 romp". Usatoday.Com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  8. ^ "Villanova-Pittsburgh was one of the NCAA tourney's greatest games - Seth Davis - SI.com". Sportsillustrated.cnn.com. 2009-03-28. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  9. ^ 9:18 PM ET, April 4, 2009Ford Field, Detroit, MI (2009-04-04). "Villanova Wildcats vs. North Carolina Tar Heels - NCAA Tournament Game - Recap - April 04, 2009 - ESPN". Espn.go.com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  10. ^ Pedulla, Tom (2009-03-18). "Villanova's winningest class hopes seniority rules at Dance". Usatoday.Com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  11. ^ a b [1][dead link]
  12. ^ http://villanova.cstv.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/031107aaa.html
  13. ^ http://www.nba.com/celtics/news/press-ford013006.html
  14. ^ "Richie Moore Past Stats, Playoff Stats, Statistics, History, and Awards". Basketballreference.com. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  15. ^ Lane, Chris (2008-10-27). "Hoops Mania Update". VU Hoops. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 

External links[edit]