Drexel Dragons men's basketball

The Drexel Dragons men's basketball program represents intercollegiate men's basketball at Drexel University. The team currently competes in the Colonial Athletic Association in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and plays home games at the Daskalakis Athletic Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Drexel Dragons
2022–23 Drexel Dragons men's basketball team
Drexel Dragons wordmark.svg
UniversityDrexel University
First season1894–95
All-time record1,334–1,186 (.529)
(through 2021–22 season)
Athletic directorMaisha Kelly
Head coachZach Spiker (7th season)
ConferenceColonial Athletic Association
LocationPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania
ArenaDaskalakis Athletic Center
(Capacity: 2,509)
Student sectionDAC Pack
ColorsNavy blue and gold[1]
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Home jersey
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Team colours
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Away jersey
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Team colours
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Alternate jersey
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Team colours
NCAA Tournament Round of 32
NCAA Tournament Appearances
1957*, 1960*, 1966*, 1967*, 1986, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2021
*at Division II level
Conference tournament champions
1960*, 1967*, 1986, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2021
*at Division II level
Conference regular season champions
1954*, 1955*, 1956*, 1957*, 1959*, 1960*, 1961*, 1963*, 1964*, 1965*, 1966*, 1967*, 1986, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2012
*at Division II level


The Dragons, a member of the City 6, have rivalries with multiple institutions, these include La Salle University, Temple University, University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph's University, and Villanova University.

The most notable rivalry Drexel has is with Penn, nicknamed Battle of 33rd Street, one of the closest rivalries geographically.


According to Basketball-Reference.com, Drexel was the 5th US school to start up collegiate basketball, their first season being 1894–1895. Drexel's first basketball game was played against Temple College on November 22, 1894, which Drexel won by a score of 26–1.[2][3] The Dragons joined Division I in 1974. Drexel has received bids to five NCAA basketball tournaments in 1986, 1994, 1995, 1996, and 2021. During the 1996 tournament, Malik Rose led the team to their only second round appearance after an upset of fifth-seeded Memphis.[4][5] Prior to this, Drexel had appeared in four Division II NCAA tournaments in 1957, 1960, 1966 and 1967, including the very first Division II tournament in 1957. Drexel's men's basketball team was ranked as high as 35th nationally in 2007, finishing the season with a 23–9 record while making the National Invitational Tournament for the fourth time in the prior five years.

On February 22, 2018, Drexel came back from a 34 point deficit (trailing 53–19 at one point), coming back to defeat Delaware 85–83 to complete the largest comeback in Division I history.[6][7]


Main BuildingEdit

Beginning in 1894, Drexel played their games and held all athletic activities in a gymnasium that was located in the 4th floor of the Main Building.[8] This gymnasium was sometimes referenced as West Philadelphia College Court.[9]

Curtis Hall GymnasiumEdit

In 1929, Curtis Hall, an extension of Drexel Main Building, was completed and included a new gymnasium. The gymnasium was prioritized in construction to be completed 3 months before the rest of the building, in December 1928, in order to be completed prior to the start of the 1928–29 Drexel basketball season.[10] The gym featured a full-sized basketball floor, and separate locker rooms for the home and visiting teams. This gym is known as Curtis Hall Gym, or Curtis Gym, and was also nicknamed "The Band Box."[11] During construction of Curtis Hall, an entrance was added on Chestnut Street to allow quicker access to the gym. The gymnasium had a seating capacity of 500. After moving home games to Sayre Junior High School, games were played in Curtis Hall again for one last season in 1953–1954, before they once again were relocated back to the high school.

Sayre Junior High SchoolEdit

As the popularity of the basketball and other sports teams grew, Curtis Hall Gym became less suitable for hosting the games. During the 1951–52 season, Drexel decided to move 3 of its 4 remaining league games to Sayre Junior High School, located in West Philadelphia. Drexel also played 6 of its 9 home games at the high school in the following 1952–1953 season.[12] A single home games were scheduled at Curtis Hall in the 1953–1954 season, however the remaining home games would be played at Sayre High School. From that point forward, Sayre Junior High School served the home court for Drexel through the 1968–1969 season.

Drexel ArmoryEdit

Beginning in the 1969–1970 basketball season, the Drexel home basketball games were moved to the 32nd Street Armory, also known as the Drexel Armory. Drexel first began holding various athletic and recreational activities in the armory in 1947, while the building was still state owned and used exclusively for National Guard and ROTC drills.[13] While home games were moved out of the Armory after the 1974–1975 season, the armory was considered for renovation in the 2010s in order to make it suitable for hosting home basketball games. Instead, renovations were make at Daskalakis Athletic Center, allowing the DAC to continue to serve as the home court.

Daskalakis Athletic CenterEdit

Since the 1975–1976 season, the Dragons' home games have been played at the Daskalakis Athletic Center, formerly known as the Physical Education and Athletic Center (PEAC). While it was considered to move the games back to the Armory at one point, Drexel instead decided to renovate the Athletic Center beginning in 2012 and keep the games there instead. Within the Daskalakis Athletic Center, games are played on Sam Cozen Court in the main gym.

Other VenuesEdit

Drexel previously held a number of home games at other local venues in Philadelphia. In the 1952–53 season when 6 of Drexel's 9 home games were played at Sayre Junior High School, 2 home games were played at Philadelphia Convention Hall (as was one game the previous season), and the final game was played at St. Joseph's Field House. In the 1950s and 1960s a number of Drexel home games were also played in The Palestra.[14]

Since moving to the Armory in the 1969–1970 season, it has become rare for home games to be played at alternative venues. In the 1995–96 season, Drexel played their first game at the CoreStates Spectrum in Philadelphia against conference rival Delaware, however it was considered a neutral site game.[15] In the 2015–16 season Drexel played what was considered a home game against Penn State at The Palestra, and also played a home game at The Palestra against Temple in the 2018–19 season. However, in many seasons, Drexel has played games at the Palestra that were considered a neutral game statistically, even while serving as a seldom used "home" court for the team's higher demand games. For example, on January 21, 1987, Drexel beat No. 18 ranked Navy at the Palestra, which was considered a neutral site (rather than an alternate home court) according to NCAA records.[16][17] In the 1987–88 season, Drexel played 3 games at the Palestra that were considered at home.[18] The designation of the Palestra being a neutral site or an alternate home court has varied over the years.

Postseason resultsEdit

NCAA Division I Tournament resultsEdit

The Dragons have appeared in the NCAA Division I tournament five times. Their combined record is 1–5.

Year Seed Round Opponent Result
1986 15 First round (2) Louisville L 73–93
1994 13 First round (4) Temple L 39–61
1995 13 First round (4) Oklahoma State L 49–73
1996 12 First round
Second Round
(5) Memphis
(4) Syracuse
W 75–63
L 58–69
2021 16 First round (1) Illinois L 49–78

NCAA Division II Tournament resultsEdit

The Dragons have appeared in the NCAA Division II tournament four times. Their combined record is 0–7.

Year Round Opponent Result
1957 First round Rider L 61–63
1960 Regional semifinals
Regional 3rd-place game
L 44–56
L 69–74
1966 Regional semifinals
Regional 3rd-place game
Long Island
L 54–62
L 61–78
1967 Regional semifinals
Regional 3rd-place game
L 53–75
L 53–61

NIT resultsEdit

The Dragons have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) six times. Their combined record is 2–6.

Year Round Opponent Result
1997 First round Bradley L 53–66
2003 Opening Round Temple L 59–68
2004 First round Villanova L 70–85
2005 Opening Round Buffalo L 76–81
2007 First round NC State L 56–63
2012 First round
Second Round
Northern Iowa
W 81–56
W 65–63
L 70–72


Retired jerseysEdit

Drexel has retired two jersey numbers.

Drexel Dragons retired numbers
No. Player Position Career
00 Malik Rose PF 1992–1996
10 Michael Anderson PG 1983–1988

Coaching awardsEdit

ECC Coach Of The Year

AEC Coach Of The Year

CAA Coach Of The Year

Player awardsEdit

ECC Player of the Year

AEC Player of the Year

ECC Rookie of the Year

AEC Rookie of the Year

CAA Rookie of the Year

CAA Defensive Player of the Year

Annual recordsEdit

See alsoEdit

Drexel Dragons women's basketball


  1. ^ "Colors for Digital Media - Drexel". Retrieved April 1, 2016.
  2. ^ "Basket Ball League". newspapers.com. Philadelphia, PA: The Philadelphia Inquirer. 26 November 1894. p. 4. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  3. ^ "Did You Know That" (PDF). The Triangle. January 29, 1937. p. 3. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  4. ^ Friend, Tom (March 17, 1996). "NCAA Tournament: West". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-01.
  5. ^ "Memphis vs. Drexel Box Score, March 14, 1996 | College Basketball at Sports-Reference.com". College Basketball at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
  6. ^ "Drexel pulls off largest comeback in D1 basketball history".
  7. ^ Borzello, Jeff (22 February 2018). "Drexel overcomes 34-point deficit to beat Delaware, largest comeback in D1 history". ESPN. ESPN. Archived from the original on 23 February 2018. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  8. ^ "Drexel Institute Of Technology 1891–1941 A Memorial History". archive.org. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  9. ^ "Drexel Passers Defeat Juanita" (PDF). The Triangle. March 5, 1928. p. 3. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  10. ^ "Completion of New Gym Hoped for by Middle of December" (Newspaper). Drexel Triangle. 17 October 1928. p. 1. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  11. ^ "Harnie Injured as Team Loses Close Bahle" (PDF). The Triangle. January 30, 1929. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  12. ^ "Hoopsters open Season Jan 3., against Rutgers" (PDF). The Triangle. December 2, 1952. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  13. ^ "Tech to Use Armory for Sports Arena" (Newspaper). Drexel Triangle. 17 January 1947. p. 6. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  14. ^ "A Better Gym For A Better Team" (PDF). The Triangle. February 2, 1950. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  15. ^ "Men's hoops to play at the Spectrum" (PDF). Philadelphia, PA: Drexel Triangle. 14 July 1995. p. 2. Retrieved 23 January 2022.
  16. ^ "Navy is Stunned by Drexel, 83-80". The Washington Post. January 22, 1987. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  17. ^ "FINAL 1987 DIVISION I MEN'S BASKETBALL STATISTICS REPORT" (PDF). NCAA.org. NCAA. 1987. p. 2. Retrieved 4 February 2022.
  18. ^ "FINAL 1988 DIVISION I MEN'S BASKETBALL STATISTICS REPORT" (PDF). NCAA. p. 2. Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  19. ^ Washburn, Rob (8 March 2019). "HOFSTRA'S WRIGHT-FOREMAN REPEATS AS CAA MEN'S BASKETBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR". caasports.com. Richmond, VA: Colonial Athletic Association. Archived from the original (Web) on 11 March 2019. Retrieved 11 March 2019.

External linksEdit