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Temple Owls

1. Philly's Phinest. An afterthought at the beginning of the season and seemingly since the departure of John Chaney, second year head coach/former Penn coach Fran Dunphy has transformed the Owls into a contender more quickly than anyone could have imagined. While everyone was raving about A-10 flameouts Dayton, Rhode Island and UMass back in December, the Owls laid low and got hot at the right time, winning their final seven games and defeating city and conference rival Saint Joseph's to win the A-10 title in AC. The Owls also assure the City of Brotherly Love that it won't be shut out of the Big Dance, which last happened in 1977.

2. Christmas Time in March. For those of you who still have the Christmas lights up, you're in luck! It's Christmas time in March this year! The Owls are lead by one of the nation's best one-two combos in Mark Tyndale and Dionte Christmas. Tyndale is the versatile senior leader who does all of the little things (leads team in assists and rebounds), while Christmas can light up the scoreboard (20.2 ppg). The one-two punch of Tyndale and Christmas often creates match-up nightmares for most teams; it has been nearly impossible to stop both all season.


3. Ole Ole Ole. The Owls transformation from NIT squad to tournament team may be the result of Spanish center Sergio Olmos progressing from "project" to "valuable big man." The 7'2" Spaniard has improved leaps and bounds from the start of the season, creating a post presence for the Owls that has been missing for years. Also, it's always fun to join the student section singing "Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole..." every time he scores a bucket. — Storming The Floor

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