2014 NCAA Tournament: Don't Be Shocked By Deep Run From St. Joseph's

By Phil Naegely
St. Joe's 2014 NCAA Tournament
Anthony Gruppuso-USA Today Sports

The Saint Joseph’s Hawks defeated No. 23 ranked VCU to win the Atlantic 10 Title and earned a spot in the 2014 NCAA Tournament. With the win, the Hawks return to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2008. Instead of waiting on the bubble, St. Joe’s awaits to hear where and who they play next. No matter which regional and pod they end up in, the Hawks are poised to make a deep run.

It’s an understatement to say that this team has faced adversity all season. Their season resume is not impressive overall, but this team has a drive and will to succeed. Since the start of 2014, Phil Martelli has led his Hawks to a 16-5 record capped off by a three-game A-10 Championship win streak and title victory.

Throughout the season, the Hawks have fought back hard all year. Very few experts and fans gave the Hawks a chance this weekend to win the A-10 title, but Martelli and company showed their physicality and effort this past week. Because of that, St. Joe’s will use those attributes along with a skilled senior class to guide them through the tournament.

Lastly, Martelli’s NCAA Tournament experience will ease the nervousness and anxiety of a squad’s first big dance inclusion. Likewise, his experience gives his squad an edge in practice and scouting this week. When it matters, Martelli has proven he can make critical decisions technically at a second’s notice.

When the bracket comes out on Sunday, make sure to have your eyes on the St. Joe’s region. With a proven coach, experienced squad, momentum, and more, St. Joe’s is ready to make noise during the tournament. You heard it here first. Don’t be shocked if St. Joe’s advances to the Sweet 16, if not the Elite Eight.

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