The Nun Who’s Giving Loyola-Chicago Inspiration

The Loyola-Chicago Ramblers pulled off the first upset of March Madness in Thursday's game against Miami. The No. 11 seed Rambler's beat the No. 6 seed with a buzzer-beater 3-pointer from Donte Ingram. It was an exciting moment for the team, but no one was more thrilled than Sister Jean Dolores Schmidt, the 98-year-old nun, Ramblers team chaplain and biggest fan.

Sister Jean has been the team chaplain since 1994. But she is much more than that. Ramblers coach Porter Moser has described her as the team's comfort blanket, scout and an overall blessing. She prays with the team in their huddle as a pregame ritual, creates detailed scouting reports day after day and follows up each game with an email to the coaching staff and players with personal notes of encouragement or accolades for playing well.

Sister Jean typically could be found walking around campus in her custom maroon basketball sneakers with her name stitched in gold on the back. Now, she is restricted to a wheelchair after breaking her hip in November. Prior to her injury, she had only missed two Loyola home games in the past 24 years. Due to her recovery and surgery, she had to miss eight home games. She followed the play-by-play of Ramblers games on her iPad and kept up with the prayers, scouting reports and emails despite not being able to physically be at the games.

Sister Jean has been cleared to travel for the big games and hopes to be by the players' sides all the way to the final. "I have Loyola going to the Sweet 16," she says. "But I have a second bracket, which I call the Cinderella dream bracket, where I have them going to the final game."

Catch Loyola-Chicago's next game vs. No. 3 seed Tennessee in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

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