The Loyola Chicago Ramblers are back in the NCAA Tournament, as is their good luck charm, the 102-year-young Sister Jean.
She’s back. Yes, Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt, better known as just Sister Jean, is back in the March Madness spotlight, as are the University of Loyola-Chicago Ramblers.
America’s most recognized nun made her first appearance on the national stage during the 2018 NCAA Tournament, when the Ramblers, then coached by Porter Moser, made a stunning run to the Final Four, falling to national runner-up Michigan in the semifinal.
When asked about coming to watch the team play, Sister Jean was, of course, thrilled to have yet another opportunity to see the players be on the national stages of college basketball.
"“I’m excited to come here because of the NCAA having chosen (Pittsburgh) to be the spot of the games. This is something our team has been talking about all year long – long before the season began. When we won the conference (title), we were so happy because we had the past week to be thinking about it.”"
How old is Sister Jean?
The 102-year young nun and basketball team chaplain, along with her Ramblers, are back in the big dance for the second consecutive season. Last year as an 8-seed, the Ramblers pulled off an upset against a 1-seed in Illinois in the second round before falling in the Sweet 16. This time, the Ramblers are a 10-seed and will take on the Ohio State Buckeyes, another Big Ten team, in the first round.
This season, Drew Valentine’s Loyola-Chicago troops finished the regular season 25–7, good enough for 4th in the Missouri Valley Conference. From there on, they knocked off Bradley, Northern Iowa, and Drake to clinch another trip to the big dance, their second in a row. As said before, their next opponent is Ohio State.
But the Ramblers are not just led by Sister Jean’s power and grace; they too have talented individuals on the hardwood. Lucas Williamson leads the team in scoring, averaging 14 points per game, and Braden Norris averages just over 10 points per game. In their tournament clinching game over Drake, Williamson led the way with 18 points and ten rebounds.
10-seeded Loyola-Chicago will take on 7-seeded Ohio State on Friday at 12:15 pm EST at the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh on CBS. You can expect to see Sister Jean in the crowd wearing her noteworthy Loyola letter jacket and her maroon-and-yellow scarf.
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