Monday, March 11, 2013

deja vu

I follow two college basketball teams with something akin to fanaticism.  The first I blogged about yesterday--the Northeastern Huskies. My university's basketball team showed something special yesterday afternoon when it fell behind by 24 points in the first half and then came back to win what was a remarkable game against George Mason University.

 I've watched the center for the Huskies hit clutch foul shot after clutch foul shot all year.  In the first half--in an illustration of what the entire team demonstrated--the center went to the foul line and threw up two bricks--the second of which deserves to be in a training film somewhere in the "How not to shoot" section.

But both the center and the rest of the team purged the apparent apprehension and played a second half that resulted in an exhilarating victory.  At the very end a player for Northeastern drove the right side of the lane and made a shot with 3 seconds left.  For those inclined to watch, the championship game is on NBCSN on Monday the 11th, tonight, at 7 pm eastern.

The other team I follow is my alma mater--UAlbany. Those who read the Madness of March may remember the references to Albany's first and second NCAA appearance. The first, a very exciting game against perennial power UConn.

Last night Albany was playing Stony Brook in the semi finals of the America East. Albany was and is a four seed. Stony Brook the one seed.  Albany led by 10 points for a portion of the second half, but that lead slowly dwindled so that the game was tied with less than 35 seconds to play.

In exactly the same way as Northeastern had a few hours earlier, Albany waited until the last ten seconds, spread the court and allowed the main stud to drive the lane. He, like a Northeastern counterpart earlier in the day, drove the right side of the lane and hit a layup with 2.5 seconds to go.

As regular season champions of the AmericaEast conference, Stony Brook will get to play in the NIT tournament.  But my alma mater, will play on Saturday morning the 16th at 1130 for the right to go to the big dance. For those fans of the Great Danes, the game will be on ESPN 2.

Two games ending the exact same way, both going the way of this fan.  If you want to understand the nature of sports in the world, interview the people who love George Mason University and Stony Brook today. Then interview followers of Northeastern and the University at Albany.

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