A Night at the Pavilion for Hoops Mania

Are there any sports that receive as much fanfare for the start of the season as college basketball?

Villanova joined its collegiate brothers by continuing its tradition of celebrating the beginning of the basketball season with a pep rally that featured dancing, dunk contests, and a BAWCE. Ill explain a little later.

First up, the Villanova Pep Band got things started with a half hour set to entertain all of those waiting in line to get the best seats in the house for hoops mania.

(You’ll have to excuse the shoddy camera work in all of these photos and videos as I am a terrible camera man.)

Once in the Pavilion, I took my seat with the rest of the Villanova Pep Band, and we absolutely got the best seats in the house.

It took a little while for all of the students to pack the gym, but once they were in, the festivities started. The nationally ranked football team got introduced, urging the students to come out and support them against Towson on Saturday.

Unfortunately my attention was directed at this guy…What is this thing?

After the women’s basketball team was introduced with a ton of enthusiasm, it was time for the main event: the men’s basketball team.

I could write a couple paragraphs about all they did when they came on, painting a vivid picture of what you missed. Instead, I give you this:

So far the night had been entertaining, but fairly typical for anyone who had been to Hoops Mania before. We were then all treated to a new Hoops Mania tradition that required a bit of audience participation. As the story goes, on the first basket of the season, the crowd would throw streamers onto the court. Apparently this USED to be an old Philadelphia tradition that got banned by the NCAA or Big East many years ago. Here it is, and it is really cool to watch:

The abbreviated scrimmage lasted 7 points and we were treated to a very pretty assist by freshman Ryan Arcidiacano and a look at all of ‘Nova’s new pieces, which are many.

After the scrimmage, there was a very short dunk contest, which ended with transfer Dylan Ennis throwing down a through the legs jam.

And the night was over. Or was it? Jay Wright then introduced the night’s musical guests, local rapper Meek Mill and headliner Rick Ross, who ended up reminding the crowd that he loves performing at universities because the women are educated AND beautiful and we’re all on our way to becoming “BAWCES”, which is, I guess, the most correct way to pronounce the word “boss”.

In the end, it was an exciting look at what our team has to offer and an entertaining show. Bring on the Big East.

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