Were you shocked? I sure wasn't. I was hopeful all weekend, keeping the positive fan spirit in high gear. So much so that in retrospect it seems forced. It is not odd for me to expect the best out of the Cardinals, and this year it was not odd for them to disappoint.
The saving grace of this season comes in two distinct pieces of knowledge:
1) We closed down the Hall with an absolute bang. I'll never forget that game as long as I live. And frankly, barring a highly unlikely final four drive, I'd rather have won that game then a couple in the tourney.
2) This was undeniably a rebuilding year, and we still played OK, making the NCAAs when many other powerhouses did not. That leaves me excited about next season when Siva gets the reins, Sammy, Jennings and Swop are more refined and Buckles, Marra and Kuric will see a lot more floor time. I'll be amazed if we aren't contending for the Big East title again.
Alas, we have to wait 7 months for that to happen.
But I, for one, stand completely behind Pitino and the coaching staff. Without him the outlook isn't so sunny when we open the new arena.
I hate that we lost, and I hate that I have to hang up my lucky shirt for one more off season. But it'll be worth it next year when we win 26 games, get seeded in the top part of the brackets and a deep run doesn't seem so improbable.