PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — If you win the regular season, you go to the NCAA Tournament. That’s the way it has always been when it came to Ivy League basketball.
Not any more.
For the first time ever, the top four teams in the Ivy League will compete in a double-header four-team tournament at the Palestra, with the winner earning an automatic bid into the 2017 NCAA Tournament.
That means, despite a 6-8 conference record, the Penn Quakers are just two wins away from reaching the dance. On the flip side, the Quakers’ next opponent — the Princeton Tigers — have not yet earned a bid despite a perfect 14-0 conference record and 17 straight wins.
ESPN’s Bracketologist Joe Lunardi currently has Princeton reaching the tourney as a No. 13 seed.
No. 4 Penn will take on No. 1 Princeton on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. in the first semifinals game, while No. 2 Harvard faces No. 3 Yale at 4:00 p.m. The winners facing off in the Ivy League Championship game Sunday at 12:00 p.m.
All three games will take place at the Palestra.
“Our coaches have been wanting this for years,” Ivy League executive director Robin Harris told NCAA.com. “And I think in part they were reflecting what they know their student-athletes want.”
You can get tickets to the Ivy League Tournament here.