Pair Of Big 5 Opponents Up Next For Men’s Basketball – Princeton University Athletics

Game Nine: Princeton (8-0) vs. Drexel (4-3) – 7 p.m., 12/5
Watch: ESPN+ | SNY | NBC Sports Philadelphia | International Feed
Live Stats
Game Notes
Game 10: Princeton (8-0) vs. Saint Joseph’s (6-2) – 1 p.m., 12/10
Watch: ESPN+
Live Stats
Game Notes
PRINCETON, N.J. – A pair of Big 5 opponents are up next for the Princeton University men’s basketball team as the Tigers host Drexel on at 7 p.m. on Dec. 5 before taking on Saint Joseph’s on Dec. 10 at 1 p.m.
National Notice
The Tigers checked in at No. 8 in the NET rankings through games Dec. 3.
Receiving Votes
The Tigers were received 35 votes in the Dec. 4 Associated Press (AP) Poll. Princeton also received 38 votes in the Dec. 4 USA Today Coaches Poll. The 2023-24 season marks the first time the Tigers have received votes since 1997-98, when Princeton ended the season ranked No. 8.
Fast Start
Princeton’s 8-0 start to the season is the program’s best start since the 1966-67 season. With a victory over the Dragons, Princeton would tie its best start in school history of 9-0 achieved in both the 1919-20 and 19-14-15 seasons.
Just One Of 15
There are 15 undefeated teams remaining in NCAA Division I men’s basketball, with Princeton being one of them.
Road Warriors
The Tigers currently have the most road wins of any team in the nation.
A 15-Year First
The Tigers were the first DI team in the last 15 years to start 5-0 with four road wins.
One Of A Kind
After starting 5-0, Princeton become the only unbeaten team in NCAA Division I men’s basketball to have not played a home game.
Seven Games. Seven Venues. Seven Wins.
Each of the Tigers’ first seven wins of the season took place in different venues. Princeton was the only team in the nation to win its first seven games in such fashion.
Fortress Jadwin
Princeton has always been tough at home, especially over the past two seasons where the Tigers have won 87.5% of their games and compiled a 28-4 record.
Last Time Out
The Tigers erased an 11-point deficit to take down Furman, 70-69, after a game-winning three-pointer by senior Matt Allocco inside Jadwin Gymnasium on Dec. 2.
Sixth Annual Teddy Bear Toss
Fans are encouraged to bring new or lightly used stuffed animals to toss on the court at halftime.
Accurate From The Line
The Tigers have been one of best free throw shooting teams so far in 2023-24, currently shooting 80.3% which ranks No. 3 in the nation.
Efficient Offense
Princeton’s two-point percentage of 57.0 ranks No. 25 in the nation. The Tigers’ adjusted offensive efficiency of 114.7 also ranks 31st nationally. Raw offensive efficiency is points scored per 100 offensive possessions. The adjusted version adjusts for the quality of opposing defenses, the site of each game, and when each game was played (recent games get more weight.) Additionally, Princeton ranks No. 37 in effective field goal percentage (54.3).
Taking Care Of The Ball
The Tigers rank No. 29 in the nation in turnover percentage (14.2). Turnover percentage is turnovers divided by possessions.
Get Stops
While the Princeton women’s basketball’s team’s slogan is “Get Stops” the Tiger men have taken a page out of the women’s book and opened the season as one of the nation’s best defensive teams. Princeton’s scoring defense (64.2) currently ranks 44th nationally.
A Fourth Ivy Player of the Week Award
Sophomore Caden Pierce was named Ivy League Co-Player of the Week on Dec. 4. On the week, Pierce averaged 22.0 points-per-game on 56.7% shooting along with 9.0 rebounds. He also handed out six assists and recorded four steals along with three blocks. Pierce was also named Ivy League Player of the Week on Nov. 13 while senior Matt Allocco won the award on Nov. 20 and sophomore Xaivian Lee on Nov. 27.
A Historic Performance
Pierce’s 26 points and 15 rebounds against Hofstra marked the first time a Princeton player recorded at least 26 points and 15 rebounds since Bob Roma ’79 on Dec. 6, 1978, in a 67-65 loss to Seton Hall inside Jadwin Gymnasium. In that game, Roma had 29 points and 18 rebounds.
Rebounding Machine
Pierce’s 11.0 rebounds-per-game currently ranks No. 8 in the nation while his 8.1 defensive rebounds rank No. 9. Pierce’s 88 total rebounds rank No. 7 and per KenPom, Pierce’s defensive rebound percentage of 28.8 ranks No. 16 nationally.
Caden Pierce Double-Double Tracker
With 22 points and 15 rebounds in Princeton’s win over Furman, Pierce recorded his fourth double-double of the season and the 11th of his career. Nationally, his four double-doubles rank 10th.
Double-Digit Pierce Rebounds = A Princeton Win
Dating back to the 2022-23 season, the Tigers have won 14-consecutive games when Pierce has had 10 rebounds or more in a game. When Pierce grabs at least 10 rebounds, Princeton is 14-1.
Offensive Threat
Pierce’s average of 15.8 points-per-game currently ranks third on the team.
A Third-Straight Weekly Honor
The Ivy League named Xaivian Lee Player of the Week on Nov. 26, marking the third-straight week a Tiger was named Player of the Week. On the week, Lee averaged 24.5 points-per-game on 55.9% shooting, 5.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists.
Career Day For Lee
In Princeton’s win over Northeastern on Nov. 24, sophomore Xaivan Lee had finished with a career-high 30 points on 11-for-21 shooting from the field, with his 11 made field goals also a career-best. Lee also went 3-for-5 from three, grabbed six rebounds and handed out four assists.
First 30-Point Game Since 2020
Lee became the first Tiger since Jaelin Llewellyn ’22 on Mar. 7, 2020, against Cornell to score 30 points in a game.
Through the Tigers’ first six games, Lee is averaging a team-high 19.0 points-per-game, a number which ranks No. 62 nationally, on 49.1% shooting from the field, 40.0% shooting from three and 86.1% from the free throw line. He also ranks second on the team in assists (3.3), rebounds (4.6) and steals (1.1).
Lee’s Development
Lee scored 152 points total his freshman season. Through eight games in 2023-24, Lee has scored 152 points, which currently ranks 51st nationally for most total points. His 53 made field goals rank No. 53 in the nation.
Strong Start For The Senior
A Second Team All-Ivy honoree in 2022-23, Allocco is averaging 17.5 points-per-game on 61.9% shooting from the field and 50.0% shooting from three along with 3.8 assists and 3.4 rebounds through eight games.
One Of The Nation’s Most Accurate
Per KenPom, Allocco’s true shooting percentage of 74.1% ranks No. 9 in the nation and his eFG% of 71.4 ranks No. 14. Allocco’s mark of 50.0% from three ranks No. 37.
A Weekly Honor For Matt Allocco
On Nov. 20 the Ivy League honored senior Matt Allocco as Player of the Week after he averaged 21.0 points-per-game on 76.2% shooting from the field and 85.7% shooting from three along with 4.5 rebounds in the Tigers wins over Duquesne and Monmouth.
A Career Night
In the Tigers’ win at Duquesne, Allocco had a career-night. He had career-highs in points (23) and made field goals (10) as he helped the Tigers defeat the Dukes 70-67.
MVP Mush
Allocco was named MVP of the Jersey Jam after finishing with 21 points on 9-for-13 shooting and nine rebounds.
Mush Milestone Watch
With 81 made three-pointers in his career at Princeton, Allocco needs to make 19 to reach 100 makes from deep.
Peters Closing In On 100 Threes
With 75 made three pointers in his career, Peters needs 25 to reach 100 makes from deep.
Martini In The Middle
Senior Zach Martini has provided valuable senior leadership for the Tigers, averaging 8.0 points and 3.4 rebounds.
Martini’s Career Night
In Princeton’s win at Bucknell on Nov. 25, Martini finished with a career-high 15 points on 6-for-7 shooting from the field and 3-for-4 shooting from three along with five rebounds, a career-high two assists, one block and one steal. Martini’s six made field goals were also a career-high.
All-Time Series
The Tigers lead the the Dragons 10-4 in a series that began in 1901, with the most recent meeting between the programs being an 83-63 victory in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Dec. 3, 2022. Princeton has an 8-10 all-time record against Saint Joseph’s.
Power Five Wins
Since Mitch Henderson took over as Tigers’ head coach in the 2011-12 season, the Tigers 11 power five wins are the most of any Ivy program. In 2023 the Tigers took down Rutgers, Missouri Arizona and in 2021 Oregon State and South Carolina. The 2018 season saw Princeton defeat Arizona State while in 2017 the Tigers overcame USC. In 2013 the Tigers earned victories over Penn State and Rutgers, and in 2011 Florida State and Rutgers fell to Princeton.
Run It Back

The Tigers are coming off a historic 2022-23 season that saw the team become the fourth No. 15 seed to make the Sweet Sixteen and win the Ivy League Tournament and Regular Season Championships, along with the London Basketball Classic. The Tigers defeated a pair of nationally-ranked opponents (No. 8 Arizona & No. 23 Missouri), became the 11th No. 15 seed to beat a No. 2 seed after taking down Arizona 58-55 in the in the NCAA Tournament Round 64, and earned the largest ever margin of victory for a No. 15 seed thanks to a 78-63 win over Mizzou in the Round of 32.
The Athletic Pierce Family
Greg Pierce, Caden’s father, played football at Northwestern and Stephanie Pierce, his mother, played volleyball at Northwestern. Alec Pierce, his brother, is a wide receiver for the Indianapolis Colts and was a second round pick in the 2022 NFL draft who played at University of Cincinnati. Pierce’s other brother, Justin Pierce (brother) played three years of college basketball at William and Mary, graduated in three years and transferred to University of North Carolina for final year and played under Roy Williams, now plays professional basketball overseas.
Lee Leads The Canadian U19 Team
Xaivian Lee represented Canada over the summer in Hungary at the FIBA U19 World Cup. He averaged 14.1 points-per-game from the field along with 3.1 assists and 3.3 rebounds. Overall, Lee ranked 14th in scoring at the FIBA U19 World Cup.
Welcome, Luke Gore
Luke Gore joins the Tigers’ coaching staff as an assistant coach in 2023-24. Gore joins the Tigers from Wichita State, where he served as the Director of Basketball Operations since April 2023. Prior to that, he was on staff at Valparaiso for 21 years, rising to Associate Head Coach in 2016. Gore served as an assistant coach from 2003 – 2016 and an administrative assistant from 2002 – 2003. During his time with the Beacons, Gore helped guide the program to 387 victories including a school record 30 wins in 2016. He led them to three NCAA Tournament appearances and four NIT appearances along with seven conference championships and three conference tournament titles.
The Newcomers
The Tigers welcome five freshmen in 2023-24; Dalen Davis, Jackson Hicke, Jacob Huggins, Derek Sangster and Ryan Duncan.
Princeton Alumni
Five alums are doing grad years at other institutions due to an Ivy rule that does not allowed student-athletes to compete for a fifth year in the conference. Ryan Langborg ’23 is at Northwestern, Keeshawn Kellman ’23 at Florida Gulf Coast, Jacob O’Connell ’23 at Merrimack, Konrad Kiszka ’23 at NYU and Jaelin Llewellyn ’22 at Michigan.
10 Princeton men’s basketball alumni are currently playing professional basketball. Tosan Evbuomwan ’23 (Motor City Cruise), Devin Cannady ’20 (Birmingham Squadron), Ethan Wright ’22 (CSM Tárgu Jiu), Ryan Schwieger ’21 (Rasta Vechta), Richmond Aririguzoh ’20 (Rasta Vechta), Myles Stephens ’19 (Dolomiti Energia Trento), Amir Bell ’18 (Anwil Wloclawek), Spencer Weisz ’17 (Hapoel Haifa), Henry Caruso ’17 (Élan Chalon), and Ian Hummer ’13 (Osaka Evessa).
From Tigers to Rangers
Two former members of the Princeton men’s basketball team have played key roles in leading the Texas Rangers to becoming World Series Champions. Rangers GM Chris Young ’02 had a dominant two seasons as a basketball player at Princeton; he was the first male athlete to be named Ivy Rookie of the Year in two sports (basketball and baseball) in 1999 and was named All-Ivy League in both his seasons. Will Venable ’05, Associate Manager of the Rangers, was a two-time All-Ivy honoree, and became the second player in history to be named All-Ivy in both basketball and baseball.
From Crimson to Tiger
Ryan Duncan’s father is Arne Duncan, a 1987 Harvard graduate who was a member of the men’s basketball team. An Academic All-American, Duncan played professional basketball in Australia from 1988 through 1991.
Latest news
Related news