Recently it was announced that the Explorers will take on their biggest city rivals, the Temple Owls in the Palestra as part of ESPN’s College GameDay covered by State Farm.
The game will be on January 18 2014 with coverage beginning at 10 AM eastern time on ESPNU and continuing at 11 AM on ESPN. The game will tip-off at noon and air on either ESPN or ESPN2.
“It’s a great opportunity to be chosen from all the nations’ games to have ESPN’s coverage,” said Coach Dr. John Giannini.
Rece Davis will be the host of College GameDay. He will be joined by analysts Jay Bilas, Digger Phelps, and Jalen Rose.
College GameDay will be coming to Philadelphia two years in a row after both Temple and La Salle agreed to play at the Palestra for this upcoming season and the 2014-15 season. As part of the agreement La Salle will be the home team this year, and Temple will be the home team for the 2014-15 game.
The last time both these teams played at the Palestra was on January 4 1989.
The game at the Palestra will conclude ESPN’s “My Home Court” initiative which is a week long celebration of college basketball’s greatest venues.
It’s only fitting that the “My Home Court” tour ends here. The Palestra, located on the University of Pennsylvania’s campus, prides itself in being one of the oldest basketball gyms in the country, first opening in 1927. It was the first site of the NCAA tournament in 1939 and has since hosted 51 NCAA tournament games. Archives state that it has hosted more college games, more visiting teams and more NCAA tournaments than any other facility.
Both city teams shared the Big 5 title last year with a 3-1 record. The last time the Explorers ran into the Owls was during the 2012-13 regular season in a packed Temple gym. La Salle fell short, 74-82 to Temple who were led by senior Khlaif Wyatt.
In the last 113 meetings between the two schools La Salle has won 40 with their last win happening in 2009. The tables might turn this year after La Salle advanced further than Temple in the 2013 NCAA tournament. The Explorers made it all the way to the Sweet 16 while Temple lost to Indiana, 58-52 in the third round.