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Jay Wright

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April 5, 2016 | By Bob Ford, Inquirer Columnist
HOUSTON - The other guys are taller and ranked higher and they will climb onto the raised court Monday night with one of the most iconic names in college basketball on the front of their jerseys. Villanova knows all that and, sure, the Wildcats would rather be playing the University of the Arts for the national championship than the North Carolina Tar Heels, but this is how the script played out and why not step into the ring and find Apollo Creed waiting? Who were you expecting, Bugs Bunny?
SPORTS
April 5, 2016 | By Joe Juliano, STAFF WRITER
HOUSTON - It has been Jay Wright's customary answer every year when Villanova is about to embark on a new season and he is asked about the team's goals. You will never hear him say what you anticipate a coach in his position would say: a Big Five championship, the Big East regular-season title, the conference championship, a deep run in the NCAA tournament. Instead, his stock saying is, "We want to be the best team we can be by the end of the season. " The success of the 2015-16 Villanova season has been a lot easier to measure.
SPORTS
April 5, 2016 | By Mike Kern, STAFF WRITER
HOUSTON - The next game is finally the last game, one way or the other. Which means Jay Wright will have to say goodbye to his two scholarship seniors. It won't be a comfortable moment, unless maybe there are nets involved. It rarely is. But Ryan Arcidiacono has been a four-year captain, almost his adopted son. Daniel Ochefu only brought him to the brink of tears earlier this week when he convinced Arch to kiss the Villanova logo on the floor of the Davis Center after their last practice there.
SPORTS
April 5, 2016
HOUSTON - If you are going to win a national championship, you may as well finish off what has been a glorious run of impossibly brilliant basketball against one of the marquee names in the sport, a university that has been so good for so long that it has played in a Final Four each of the last eight decades. Villanova's players will not be playing the tradition of North Carolina basketball Monday night at NRG Stadium, but they will be facing a very skilled team that plays a style completely different than their own. The seniors who will start played three years ago in a mostly forgettable 8/9 NCAA Tournament game in Kansas City.
SPORTS
April 5, 2016 | By Mike Sielski, Inquirer Columnist
HOUSTON - The last time Jay Wright led Villanova to the Final Four, it took less than two months after that national semifinal loss to North Carolina for an NBA team to tempt him with the opportunity to become a head coach. The year was 2009. The team was the 76ers. Their president at the time was Ed Stefanski, whose ties to the city and friendship with Wright were reason enough for Wright to come in for a sit-down and contemplate taking the job. The following week, Wright withdrew his name from consideration, but already he had set himself up for a similar overture in the future.
SPORTS
April 5, 2016 | By Mike Jensen, STAFF WRITER
HOUSTON - Kris Jenkins gives a little smile, the picture of cool, talking about the work he has to do Monday against North Carolina's big men. Sure, they've got a few inches on him and there are more of them. Jenkins knows all that better than anyone. If the Tar Heels are playing, he's watching. They are practically family. One of them is family. But stick to the court first. If Villanova wins a national title at NRG Stadium, odds are Jenkins will be way up the list of reasons why. Something like the 18 points and eight rebounds Jenkins had against Oklahoma - and his defensive work, including that charge he took from Buddy Hield - would look just dandy for 'Nova if he repeats it all. Jenkins is used to matchup issues.
SPORTS
April 5, 2016
"Except for (North) Carolina or Kansas, I don't think there's a team in this year's tournament that isn't worried about losing in the second round. As I told the kids, 'Is that going to kill us (if it happens again)?' No. If that's the worst it is, we can handle it. Now let's go try to win the whole thing.' " - Villanova coach Jay Wright on the Monday after Selection Sunday, when asked about all of the early exits by his Wildcats since they made it to the Final Four in 2009.
SPORTS
April 4, 2016 | By Dick Jerardi, Staff Writer
HOUSTON - Nearing the end of his senior year at Lower Merion High in 2012, Darryl Reynolds was being recruited by zero Division I schools. The Aces were playing Chester in the District I championship game at Villanova and Jay Wright was there to watch "all these great players," including Chester's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson. Larry Brown, between jobs, was there with his good friend Wright. "Larry Brown said, 'I like that guy' and he pointed at Darryl Reynolds," Wright said Friday at his Final Four news conference.
SPORTS
April 4, 2016
HOUSTON - A stone-faced Oklahoma undergrad, in the second row of the Boomer Sooners section, saw another lost Sooners possession and simply said, "C'mon, just give us two. " It was obvious in the best seats and the last rows of NRG Stadium: Oklahoma's will had been shattered. Sooners coach Lon Kruger put it this way about the whole Villanova avalanche that rolled over his squad Saturday in an NCAA national semifinal: "It became embarrassing right there. . . . We lost composure, and things fell apart.
SPORTS
April 4, 2016 | By Joe Juliano, STAFF WRITER
HOUSTON - With Villanova having knocked No. 1 overall seed Kansas out of the NCAA tournament last weekend, the thought was that North Carolina was the team to beat of the remaining teams in the Final Four. The top-seeded Tar Heels certainly looked the part Saturday night in the nightcap of the national semifinal doubleheader, using their dominant inside game to wear down Syracuse and take an 83-66 victory over the Orange before a crowd of 75,505 at NRG Stadium. North Carolina (33-6)
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