Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Duke, Fans, K, Purnell

Lots of thoughts, little time...

Congratulations Duke. What an awesome game. It wasn't perfect. Maybe not even as good a game as CBS and K would have us think, but Wow is Butler good, and amazing that this duke team won a national championship.

I was almost sure that Stall-Ball was going to undo Duke. I still think it was a mistake, but then again, I don't have any national championships, and K has 4. Great call to miss the free-throw. Despite the all too painful memory of Florida beating State this year in a similar situation because of the miss and a bomb, I am convinced it is the best call.

99% of Carolina fans SUCK, as do probably 75% of State fans for not pulling for Duke in this tournament. It only elevates our programs to have another triangle based championship. Not to mention it actually gets each ACC school a bigger check. Maybe it is just a sign of how society as a whole has changed, kind of like how Washington is broken and Republicans and Democrats have to hate each other and insult each other to further their own agendas, but I sure miss the days where we hated each other when we play, but we'd all pull for ACC when outside the league. Most Carolina fans I know now would pull for Iran over Duke. Even worse, most Duke fans would pull for Kentucky over UNC.

My 9 year old son (I think he's 9 now) has seen two championship games. My earliest basketball memory is David Thompson busting his head in the NCAA and returning from the hospital with his head wrapped as State continued on its way to the NCAA Championship. And I was hooked for life. My kids memories are of two ACC championships. I've trained him right, we can be State fans and Hate the arrogant Heels and rich Dukies during the season, but come tournament time, we pull for the ACC. I did have to pause and remind him firmly though that we are State fans when he wanted to paint his hair Blue for school today. I told him No, and reminded him that if somehow it came out light blue, we'd have to shave his head.

Have you noticed the kinder, gentler Coach K? He's making his best effort to be a nice guy with the press, and I think is understanding more that some of the Duke-hating has been his fault, and he's trying to fix it. I can't help but see similarities between this change and the softer, more fan friendly Tiger Woods we are going to see this year. Maybe K went to Alabama for asshole rehab? OK, cheap shot. But let's be honest, both have been the absolutely best at what they do, and while they both have done absolutely great things outside of their sport that don't get much attention, they've both also been abrupt, quick tempered, and abusive to fans and press at times. Let's hope they both continue to realize they can actually be nice and still succeed at the highest level.

Oliver Purnell to Depaul. I am shocked, but shouldn't be. This is very much like a non-firing similar to Herb's departure from state. If fans complain enough and there is a lateral move out there for a fresh start, why wouldn't a smart coach take it. I think Oliver is a great coach whose teams have really excited me and repeatedly disappointed me. Here's hoping Clemson can find a good one. The ACC needs a coaching upgrade similar to the UVA hire last year.

I love college basketball, and thank god it is over. Masters here I come.


Anonymous said...

Purnell knew he couldnt get them any better and skipped town.