Newman Arena opened its doors for the Big Red faithful tonight, and when their name was announced, the crowd as expected, went wild.
However, Cornell fans, despite the teams success, do have a legitimate argument to be upset.
Many people have declared Cornell the Cinderella team for 2010, however as a 12 seed, it will be very difficult.
Just a month earlier Cornell sat strongly as the No. 22 team in the country, (Which puts them in the ballpark range of a 4-7 seed.) With one loss to Penn, their dreams seemed to diminish. They won the rest of their schedule, but couldn't break back into the top teams, one reason being that they couldn't boost their resumé with a solid conference schedule.
However, we could sit here and talk about what could have been, or what should have been, but what will be is a matchup against a red hot Temple team fresh off an A-10 conference championship. The Owls come into the game ranked 17th in the country.
They have had a spectacular year beating both Villanova and Seton Hall (a team that beat Cornell), while flourishing in their conference schedule, losing just twice in the deepest A-10 conference in years.
Here are a few reasons why Cornell might win. One reason is that they score the ball. They don't need to focus on the interior, when basically anything will go in from the perimeter. Temple's defense is strong at keeping people from getting the ball down low, and they only allow around 56 points a game, while Cornell scores 75 points a game. If Cornell's shots fall, they will win this game.
Cornell gets up for big games. In their game against Kansas, Cornell nearly took away a win in an arena where not a single red shirt could be found except the ones on their backs. They should fare well on a neutral court (Jacksonville, Florida).
They are the underdogs. This game would never have happened. Cornell would be a six seed, and they would be a heavy favorite. It's just that one game. There is a lot less separation between these two teams than the seeding would indicate.
Cornell hasn't played since March 6th. Temple played on March 14th. Having a near two week resting period can be crucial come tournament time, after a long hard regular season, teams need some time off, and Cornell, will have it.
Although Cornell has been here two years in a row, the same is the case for Temple. The experience factor still goes to Cornell who have eight seniors compared to the two that Temple is boasting.
There are a lot of reasons why both teams can win. However, we can throw that all out Friday, when the game tips off.