FAU professor engages in friendly rivalry with San Diego State colleague

Two professors, one from Florida Atlantic University and the other from San Diego State, talked a little smack ahead of Saturday's Final Four showdown.
Published: Mar. 28, 2023 at 7:20 PM EDT
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Dr. John Renne is a highly analytical urban planning expert at Florida Atlantic University.

But the incredible run by the Owls in the NCAA tournament has also turned Renne into a pumped-up basketball fan.

“This is the first time in 19 years working as a professor that I have a team that may be a national champion,” Renne said. “That makes it so exciting.”

On a Tuesday Zoom call, Renne engaged in a little friendly cross-country trash talk with his fellow urban planning expert, Dr. Bruce Appleyard.

Appleyard teaches at San Diego State, home to the Aztec team standing in the path of Owl glory.

"We've got better sun, surf and that will win the night for us," Appleyard said.

That is pretty tame as far as trash talk goes, but the spirit and the smiles were high-wattage from both men.

Renne retorted with his confident assertion that the Owls will be flying high and clutching a championship soon.

Both urban planners are in the grip of March Madness, eagerly awaiting Saturday's showdown.

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