In this space last week, I highlighted Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt — 98-year-old nun and team chaplain for Loyola-Chicago — after her 11th-seeded Ramblers won in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
Thursday night, Sister Jean's team improved to 3-0 in #MarchMadness and advanced -- in yet another last-minute win -- to the Elite Eight.
"I don't care that you broke my bracket," she quipped after Loyola's latest victory.
With each game, Sister Jean's national celebrity just keeps growing.
Among the countless stories about her, the New York Times' Jeff Arnold had a really interesting feature this week on "A Day in the Life of Sister Jean, Media Darling." A note from the piece:
William Behrns, Loyola’s eeassistant athletic director for communications, is one of two staff members who have been assigned to sort the requests for time with Sister Jean since the Ramblers’ success thrust them — and her — onto the national stage last week. Behrns estimated that as of Monday evening, his office had received 75 requests for interviews with Sister Jean, from outlets including “The Tonight Show,” newspapers, radio stations and cable television networks.
Here on the religion beat, we do love this kind of detail:
Sister Jean wakes before dawn, an hour earlier than usual, and immediately spends time in her daily prayer and meditation. She routinely, and almost ironically this week, asks God for a peaceful day. She then meditates on a gospel story; lately, her choices have centered on reminders of God’s love for his children. “Whether we win or lose,” she said in an interview with The New York Times on Tuesday morning, “God is still with us.”
Loyola will face Kansas State, a No. 9 seed, in the South Region final Saturday night. USA Today calls it "an epic underdog battle."
But enough about Sister Jean and Loyola -- for now anyway. Let's dive into the Friday Five: