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The Prodigal Freshman Returns

True Story: We thought about never coming back since no one wished us Merry Christmas (Happy Holidays would have also sufficed), but you can only watch your WRKP in Cincinnati DVDs so many times.

What happened to spending Christmas Day furiously posting in the comments section of a scarcely read, team-specific college sports blog? What happened to the America we grew up in?

Whatever. We're over it.

Anyhow just as we absolutely did not predict on Friday, Jerome Harmon Brandon Bender Derrick Caracter will rejoin the Louisville basketball team today after having been sent home by Rick Pitino five days ago.

Pitino made the announcement during his press conference on Tuesday, and added that Caracter will not see the floor in any of the Cardinals' three games in the next four days.

This appears to be what Derrick really wants, and despite the fact that the team just played its best game of the season with him about 650 miles away, they seem eager to get him back. In Edgar Sosa's words: "I can't wait til he comes back. He's been missed a lot in the dorm and at practice. Our guys just can't wait to see him tomorrow. When coach told us he was coming back, we all got excited. We were hoping and praying coach wouldn't send him home for good. We think he can help us out in the long run, so we definitely want him here."

Well, in the words of fictionally legendary Norman Dale, "This is your team." If the kids are excited about it then we're excited about it.

RP said that now the goal for Derrick is to meet four agendas, one of which (his weight) he met over the summer, so we guess his goal is to meet three agendas and maintain one. The second agenda is to "get his head out of the clouds and understand the game of life" which would seem to be a tall task considering there is no set criteria for judging how well one "understands life," and thus achieving such a goal is impossible. The third objective is to to "get him to understand how to play the game of basketball," and the final agenda in this 100% doable quartet is to "be part of a team that is totally passionate about winning."

Pitino went on to say: "We've got to win three games and we can't be tied into Derrick too much right now. I've got to look at what's best for the team. I can't take away from the team. I can't keep getting distracted like this."

Indeed keeping the majority of your focus on the team as a whole while at the same time attempting to teach one of your players how to understand life is an unenviable task, but when you've already become the first coach to take three different teams to the final four we suppose you have to invent challenges like these to keep things funky.

All kidding aside we wish nothing but the best for Derrick, which is more than we can say for Gary Parrish who had the gall to steal our funny-named NBDL team name joke. When we make a joke you don't come anywhere near it you smug son of a bitch, and if you reference the city of Cincinnati, the letters "W," "K," "R," or "P," Gary Sandy, Loni Anderson, or the anything that took place in the years 1978 through 1982 at any point in the next 30 days, we're coming after you with everything we got.

Welcome back DC, make us proud.