Thursday, November 12, 2015

Let's Go Yale ... And Mary

It's possible that the most annoying commercial TigerBlog has ever seen is the Geico one with Peter Pan.

Seriously. This is the most grating commercial TB has ever seen.

You've seen it. The setting is a reunion, but Peter Pan never grew up and blah blah blah. It's torture to watch.

Actually, TB doesn't watch it. He turns the channel anytime it comes on, because he just can't stand to watch it.

The commercial does do one important thing. It gets you to remember the product. There have been some incredibly creative, funny, well-produced commercials that are really well done - but you can't remember what the product was when they're over.

So in that respect, Geico has succeeded. On the other hand, it takes a special kind of hatred of your final product to get the viewer to want to pay more for his car insurance for another company. That's how awful it is.

TB isn't a huge fan of the "if you're so-and-so then you do so-and-so. It's what you do" concept of the Geico commercials. But he'll still take one piece of it here.

If you're a Princeton fan, you root against Yale. It's what you do.

Well, not always anyway. It depends on a few factors. 

And if you're a Princeton fan, then you're definitely rooting for Yale this weekend.

No, not Saturday at 1 in the football game. You'd never do that.

TigerBlog is talking about tomorrow night, when Harvard comes to New Haven in women's volleyball. It's a crowded field at the top of the Ivy League women's volleyball standings, and Princeton enters the final weekend with a shot at the championship.

That's not how it looked like it would go after the first three matches of the league season. All of those were losses for the Tigers - to Penn, Dartmouth and Harvard.

Since then, Princeton has ripped off eight wins in nine matches, surging to 8-4 in the league. The only loss along the way was at Yale.

Not that Princeton is alone in losing at Yale in the league. The Bulldogs are 7-5 in the league, with a 5-0 record at home and a 2-5 record on the road.

Princeton probably needs Yale to push that record to 6-0 at home for the Tigers to have a shot at at least a share of the league title. Then again, Yale definitely needs to get to 6-0 to have it own shot.

There are four teams still alive in the Ivy League women's volleyball chase. Harvard is currently 9-3, followed by Princeton and Dartmouth at 8-4 and Yale at 7-5.

It's still possible to have a four-way tie at 9-5, with obvious math. It's also possible for there to be an outright champion, which mathematically at least could be Princeton, Harvard or Dartmouth.

Right now, Princeton would take any piece of the championship it can get. And that can only be accomplished should Harvard lose at least once this weekend.

Princeton is at Cornell tomorrow night and Columbia Saturday night. Harvard is at Yale tomorrow night and Brown Saturday; Dartmouth has the opposite schedule from Harvard.

No offense to Brown, but the Bears are 4-8 in the league right now, so Princeton better root for Yale Friday night to stay unbeaten at home. Harvard beat Yale 3-0 in the first meeting, but then again Yale beat Princeton 3-0 the first time they played and Princeton came back to beat Yale 3-1.

So that's women's volleyball.

The basketball season starts for both the men and women tomorrow night. The men are at Rider. The women are on Carril Court against American.

Can it really be basketball season already? Well, not til tomorrow, but close.

Tomorrow brings more than American's women's basketball team to campus. Or Dartmouth hockey.

There will also be the matter of the several hundred cross country runners who will be at the West Windsor course tomorrow for the NCAA regional. Princeton has hosted this before, and it's quite a sight.

There will be 30 women's teams and 28 men's teams at the starting lines. Each team will have seven runners.

Doing that math, there will be 210 women for that race, which starts at noon, and 196 men for the second race, which starts at 1. Teams and individual runners will be looking to qualify for the NCAA championship race, which will be held next Saturday in Louisville.

TigerBlog, you might recall, is a huge fan of Ivy League Heps cross country. The regional will be even more colorful, with so many different teams there to compete.

One of them will be Loyola. And one of the runners for the Loyola women will be Mary Sutton.

Mary is the daughter of Stephanie Sutton, Princeton's longtime ticket manager. Mary basically grew up in Jadwin Gym, and there probably aren't too many people who've seen more Princeton basketball in the last 18 years than she has. Now she's coming back to her hometown to compete as a college freshman.

It has to be pretty exciting for her. She's done well at Loyola, consistently running in the top three for Loyola. She was the team's third finisher at the Patriot League championships, where she finished 44th overall.

So if you're a Princeton fan, you can root for Mary.

And Yale. But only in women's volleyball.

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