Saint Peter’s Locked Out of Final Four


Caiden Lujin, Staff Writer

Cinderella shook up the college basketball scene this March as Saint Peter’s made history as the first 15 seed to make it to the Elite Eight round in an underdog story for the ages. Though their run ended Sunday against North Carolina, the Jersey City college immortalized itself in sports history by winning over the hearts of the entire country this March Madness.

Thursday, March 17 marked the first men’s college basketball tournament with full capacity crowds since 2019. It started off tame, with upsets few and far between across the first few hours. 

Then came the Saint Peter’s Peacocks. 

Matched up against a basketball Goliath in Kentucky, the overtime win was an upset on all fronts. Saint Peter’s men’s basketball budget sits at $1.6 million compared to Kentucky’s $18.3 million. 3,200 can be seated at Saint Peter’s Run Baby Run arena to Kentucky’s Rupp Arena seating 23,500. Not to mention, Saint Peter’s had games canceled multiple times throughout the ceiling due to leaky roofs. 

So, how did this happen?

The upset over Kentucky was just the 10th time in NCAA history a 15 had taken down a 2 in the first round, the ninth coming last year with Oral Roberts beating Ohio State. Rallying behind America’s most famous mustache worn by Doug Edert, the Peacocks strutted into the second round to play the 30-2 Murray State Racers.

After a convincing 10 point win, the basketball world began to question whether the run was a fluke. Before anyone could answer that question, Saint Peter’s defeated the heavily favored Purdue Boilermakers on National Peacock Day in the Sweet Sixteen, becoming the first 15 seed to ever make it to the Elite Eight.

Small town student athletes became household names within a matter of weeks, and the Peacocks quickly began to be coined as the greatest Cinderella team ever.