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Hoopaholic’s FF E2: Off the Court Ponderings

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Trying to deal with severe withdrawal symptoms, awaiting anxiously all the news that will be breaking about the Louisville Cardinals men’s program in weeks and months to come, a few last morsels of snark from last weekend’s Last Weekend.

Every time I look at Bill Self, I wonder: Is he wearing a toupee?

Always thought so.

A few years back, I presented the question in the media room before a game. It was universal that my supposition was absurd.

I remain skeptical those follicles atop his noggin’ are all ones grown naturally.

I am not alone. Write this in your search engine, “Does Bill Self wear a toupee?” and there are a plethora of articles considering the same curiosity. The consensus of conclusions: Yes he does.

I posed the query during a recent lengthy hoops colloquy with Doc. Who is an actual medical M.D., not somebody who just plays one on TV or stayed at a Holiday Inn last night.

He agrees with me.

It’s a rug.

* * * * *

For the opening portions of U of L’s semi against South Carolina, I watched the alternative telecast.

The BTS Show. Megastars Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi doing their Peyton and Eli thing while the game was going on.

They are charismatic. Funny. Interesting. Really knowledgeable about basketball, as one might suspect.

But the experiment didn’t work for me in the same way I cherish the Manning bros. on Monday nights. Not in this context.

I believe I know why.

The Mannings are on for regular season NFL games. Which obviously are of less consequence than a loser leaves town tilt in the Final Four. And, despite all their banter with each other and guests, the football guys are still locked into games. Especially Peyton, notoriously obsessive about football.

Bird and Taurasi would go off on tangents — the kind of kicks the players were wearing, or how they would have loved NIL when they were playing — and sort of ignore the game.

What they talked about was fascinating. Entertaining.

Just not during a national semi-final.

It’s a small sample size for me. They might have gotten better. But, during their 1st Q back and forth with guest Kevin Garnett, I’d had enough, and never returned.

But, should they get some sort of regular show out of this, I’ll definitely tune in.

* * * * *

Bill Self Q & A, Part Deux.

The title winning coach is facing the two most serious NCAA violations a coach can be charged with. Apparently there is tangible evidence to back up the allegations. (Which subject matter was never mentioned during tourney coverage that I heard.)

So, when the ruling body finally comes down with its cease and desist order, will Self already be way beyond retirement age, collecting Social Security, driving around in a golf cart while living in Boca Del Grande?

* * * * *

My Favorite NCAA Tournament Moment.

Easy. There’s not even a runner up.

Hubert Davis’s interview with Tracy Wolfson in the opening half of the title game. That infectious enthusiasm. So very cool.

Knotted at 22 at the time, his Tar Heels proceeded to fashion a 16-0 run.

* * * * *

If I hear one more announcer calling a game intone, “They don’t need a three, there’s plenty of time,” or ask, “Will they go two for one?,” I’ll need a new TV, such will be the force of my destruction.

Nobody understands the overuse of cliché more than me.

But, gentlemen, ladies, try to catch yourselves at least every once in awhile.

Besides, college coaches never go two for one.

* * * * *

As a U of L fan, there are two opposing players whose performances still cause acid reflux.

Dave Corzine, to whom I introduced myself, when he was in town announcing the DePaul game. My opening line, “I still have nightmares about you.”

Rex Chapman. And that day that shall ever live in infamy.

But Corzine is really a nice dude, and we had a pleasant chat.

And, having dealt with most of the same issues Chapman has overcome, I’m really happy for his success, and how he’s turned his life around.

Plus he wears those blue glasses with pride. Good for him.

* * * * *

Nine hundred women playing college hoops have already entered the Transfer Portal.

* * * * *

One apparently knowing observer of the women’s game, Lyndsey D’Arcangelo, opines that Cardinal Emily Engstler is the player who shall make the biggest leap in the WNBA draft because of her tourney performance.

* * * * *

Bill Self, one more once.

There was an article in the Washington Post that posited, in the wake of K’s retirement, Bill Self should/ will be the “voice of authority” in college basketball.

Really, is that writer tone deaf?

How about Sean Miller, he’s back on the bench at Xavier?

Has the person who penned that not heard of, oh, Jay Wright? Mark Few?

* * * * *

I had one more anecdote, but . . .

. . . enough is enough.

Gotta move on.

But I can’t help wondering, what is DJ Wagner doing and thinking about right now?

— c d kaplan