Villanova in the Media

Media Highlights from February 2018

Marketing professor Charles Taylor was quoted in numerous national media outlets, including the New York Times and Associated Press, regarding Super Bowl Advertising.
Marketing professor Charles Taylor was quoted in numerous national media outlets in February regarding his research on Super Bowl advertising.

Villanova’s distinctive academic programs, world-class faculty, cutting-edge research and super-star students place the University in the national media spotlight. Below is a sampling of media highlights from February 2018:

Whisky for women: Johnny Walker meets Jane

USA Today – 02/28/2018

Johnnie Walker Black Label just got a little bit more feminine. The whisky maker is putting a woman in its logo for the first time ever — a new Jane Walker edition that will be on sale for a limited time. "Women have always been extremely important consumers of a lot of different types of consumer-packaged goods," said Charles Taylor, a marketing professor at Villanova University. "In the environment of #MeToo, this is a very positive and uncontroversial type of response by the marketers.”

What Makes #NeverAgain Different?

The New York Times – 02/26/2018

Video features research from Jerusha Conner, Villanova University: These students survived a shooting at their school. Now, they’re leading a national movement for stricter gun control Just days after the shooting they called for school walkouts around the country, traveled to the Florida state capital, and planned a national march. It’s clear these students are doing things differently—here’s how.

Jalen Brunson fueled by his father

ESPN – 02/24/2018

Villanova guard Jalen Brunson is fueled by his father. Former NBA journeyman Rick Brunson encourages his son and Villanova star Jalen to avoid imitating his career.

If video games spur gun violence, it’s only in the United States

Washington Post – 02/23/2018

A common refrain since, oh, the dawn of video gaming is that playing video games spurs young people to violent acts … Yet, a Villanova University researcher who spoke with USA Today indicated that school shooters might be less interested in violent video games than other young men their age. (Most school shooters are, after all, young men).

Sea urchins can drill holes in solid rock with just their teeth

New Scientist – 02/22/2018

Michael Russell at Villanova University in Pennsylvania and his colleagues studied purple sea urchins (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus), which live along the west coast of North America. These animals look like purple balls with hundreds of spines, called tubefeet, which they use to walk and move food to their mouths.

After Parkland, a new generation finds its voice

Christian Science Monitor – 02/22/2018

On a bus to Tallahassee on Florida’s State Road 91 on Tuesday, Drew Schwartz sits with a scrum of fellow students planning the logistics of their march on the state capital, just hours away … “They are speaking with a moral authority, and there’s nothing more damning than having adult dysfunction called out by a kid,” says Jerusha Conner, professor of education and counseling at Villanova University in Pennsylvania.

After Parkland, video games back in critics' crosshairs

USA Today – 02/21/2018

In the wake of last week’s shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., critics of violent video games are again taking aim … Not so fast, says Villanova University psychologist and researcher Patrick Markey. “All we can really say for sure is that there does not appear to be a link at this time between violent video games and school shootings,” he said. “And if there is a link, it goes in the opposite direction.”

Jay Bilas' full guide to March

ESPN – 02/21/2018

It is not often that one can be guided down the road to the Final Four with such specificity and accuracy. You are quite lucky, but no need to thank me. You're welcome … Jay Wright has developed the best culture, on and off the floor, in college basketball. That is not to say that other programs do not have great cultures, because they do. But Villanova's is the best.

'A Pope Francis Lexicon' explores key words of pontificate

Vatican News – 02/20/2018

‘A Pope Francis Lexicon’ is the title of a new book being hailed as an essential guide to key themes defining the papacy of Jorge Mario Bergoglio … Among the most critical essays in the book is one on ‘Episcopal accountability’ written by Katie Grimes from Villanova University.

Meet the people behind the best Olympics Twitter accounts

Boston Globe – 02/20/2018

One day in December, Courtney Harkins was listening to one of her favorite NPR programs, “Wait, Wait … Don’t Tell Me,’’ when comedian Paula Poundstone went on a rant about cross-country skiing … Ryan Irwin, a San Francisco native and Villanova alum, manages the day-to-day social media operation at NBC Sports and Olympics and is responsible for the oversight of the content and the community managers.

Inside Villanova's epic five-year run

ESPN – 02/19/2018

Jay Wright was surprisingly upbeat on the Thursday morning after Villanova's upset loss to St. John's the night before. There was a nice breakfast spread for the coaches and players during their film session. Even Dunkin' Donuts coffee, which the Villanova head coach was extremely excited about.

IBM lawsuit casts diversity in starkly competitive terms

Reuters – 02/15/2018  

International Business Machines Corp’s (IBM.N) insistence in a new lawsuit that its efforts to recruit and maintain a diverse workforce are trade secrets bucks a trend towards transparency and highlights how companies can see the issue in competitive terms, business and legal experts said … IBM’s tools for reaching its diversity goals could qualify as trade secrets if it can show they are valuable to competitors, said Villanova University law professor Michael Risch.

Nunes Memo Reveals Congressman's Penchant for Conspiracy Theories

Newsweek – 02/13/2018  

Watching the Devin Nunes memo blow up like a trick cigar a few weeks ago, Andrew Janz called himself “probably the happiest man in the country” … Nunes, said David Barrett, an authority on Congress and the spy agencies at Villanova University, has added to the partisan rancor on the Hill instead of isolating the committee from the political wars, which it needs to gain the trust of the CIA and other intelligence agencies to admit their mistakes.

How Your Smartphone May Be Making You Unhappy

U.S. News & World Report – 02/12/2018  

Have you ever pulled out your smartphone to check an incoming text during a family dinner? Scrolled through your emails late at night while lying in bed next to your spouse? … This imbalance can have profound consequences for young people, says Sister Ilia Delio, who serves as the Josephine C. Connelly endowed chair in theology at Villanova University. Over-reliance on a smartphone can lead to "distraction, lack of attention, an increase in narcissism and an increase in loneliness," she says.

The Vatican seems to be keen for a deal with Beijing

Public Radio International – 02/08/2018

In China, millions of Catholics go to church every week. And when they do, around half of them are breaking the law. That’s because many Catholic churches in the People’s Republic of China operate in a legal gray area. These so-called underground churches are not registered with the official Chinese government bureau that oversees religious affairs, and neither are the Catholic bishops and the priests who preside over them. … Massimo Faggioli, a church historian at Villanova University, says he understands Zen’s point of view. But Faggioli says he has more faith in Francis and his diplomatic corps to find the best possible arrangement with Beijing.

What Did Pope Francis Know About Sex Abuse In Chile?

NPR’s On Point – 02/07/2018

Did Pope Francis know about clergy sex abuse in Chile and cover it up? We'll hear the evidence from his own commission and from guests including Massimo Faggioli, historian and theologian at Villanova University.

Supreme Court Inaction Could Open New Front in Gerrymandering War

Bloomberg BNA – 02/06/2018

State courts could be a new battleground for groups challenging voter maps after the U.S. Supreme Court opted against intervening in a partisan gerrymandering fight in Pennsylvania … Decisions from state Supreme Courts based on state constitutions are typically insulated from U.S. Supreme Court review, Michael Moreland, a constitutional scholar at Villanova University’s Charles Widger School of Law in Villanova, Pa., told Bloomberg Law.

The Waymo-Uber Trial Begins

Bloomberg – 02/06/2018

Waymo has spent almost a year accusing Uber Technologies Inc. of an unconscionable theft of its hard-won technology -- and now has to deliver its proof … “A lot is going to depend on themes of conspiracy, but the rubber is finally going to meet the road for Waymo,” Michael Risch, a professor at Villanova University School of Law in Pennsylvania, said in an email. “Can they show trade secrets in Uber’s stuff or not? After a year of pretrial smoke, will they show a fire?”

Advertisers Eschew Politics for Humor in Super Bowl Commercials

The New York Times – 02/05/2018

In an era of cord-cutting and ad-skipping, the Super Bowl is a sweet salve for the nation’s marketers. There’s no bigger stage for advertisers — last year’s game drew more than 111 million viewers — and that’s why they’re willing to shell out millions of dollars to be on it for 30 seconds. … Some industry experts were expecting at least one major ad focused on women this year, perhaps tied to the #MeToo movement. “I’m a little bit surprised,” Charles R. Taylor, a professor of marketing at the Villanova University School of Business, said. “Some of the best ads over the last 10 years have focused on female empowerment, like the Audi daughter ad.”

Here’s a look at the best and the worst Super Bowl ads

The Associated Press (picked up nationally by outlets including, U.S. News and The Washington Post)

During advertising’s biggest showcase, tame humor and messages about social causes ruled the day. Slapstick humor, sexual innuendo and chest thumping patriotic messages were, for the most part, nowhere in sight. … “The goal may be to introduce a new trade character that can build awareness, as in the Mucinex Man. However, this ad was a complete disaster,” Villanova University marketing professor Charles Taylor said.