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The First Window: Hoopaholics Gazette

They sentenced me to eight decades of hoopdom . . .

Respects to Leonard Cohen.

Unlike many fans whose team like mine has an empty dance card, I’m a hoopaholic.

I’m locked in.

Though, in a sign of maturity, or so I would crow, I missed the opening half of Huggy Bear vs. Terrapins, while keeping a lunch engagement made a month ago.

I did not linger.

This is one of my favorite days of the year, every year.

Some random musings follow.

* * * * *

The Professor called and asked if JP Pegues, the Furman Paladin who hit the game winning triple against UVa is the son of Mike Pegues, former U of L coach, now on Thad Matta’s staff at Butler.

Correct Answer: No.

Smart Guy noted of that same upset how ironic that 17 year senior Kihei Clark, the paradigm of mature steadiness, threw the ill-advised pass out of a trap that directly led to the winning score.

Keen observation, there.

* * * * *

Speaking of irony.

Kevin Willard’s Maryland Terps pulled out their 8/9 matchup against West Virginia by out-toughing the Mountaineers down the stretch.

That does not happen often.

* * * * *

During his day before presser, Iona Gael coach Rick Pitino said he wanted to coach until he’s 80.

Which he’ll more than likely do at St. John’s.

* * * * *

College of Charleston fell to San Diego State in their opener in the South Region.

But had the coolest unis.

Which simply said “College” above the numbers.

Clair Bee, author of the Chip Hilton books, is smilin’ somewhere. Since College has to be in the same league as Tech and State.

* * * * *

Even though my Cards are out, I still checked the records to look for any opening rounds memories from the days of yore.

One of the more memorable and arguably my biggest disappointment as U of L fan came in ‘67 when the 2d ranked Cards fell to SMU. The Mustangs converted off a jump ball run out with seconds to play.

The Final Four was in Freedom Hall that year. The Cards did not make it.

I remember sitting in The Professor’s den, head in hands, dumbstruck, not moving for a long time.

‘82 was pretty cool in Vandy’s Memorial Gym. The team U of L was supposed to play didn’t show. They sent Middle Tennessee in their place.

The ‘89 subregional in Indy was fun. Beat Arkansas- Little Rock and Arkansas to advance.

My runnin’ podner, The Professor and I didn’t have tickets. So we got up there early to score some on the street. We started with breakfast at Shapiro’s. Got some great seats. Ate lunch at Shapiro’s. Beat Little Rock. Ate dinner at Shaprio’s.

What more can a husko gordo Card fan want from a day?

There’s that L to Creighton in Orlando I chatted about the other day here. No need to revisit.

Yeah, nothing much memorable, but I had to look.

‘81 against Arkansas in Austin? Not goin’ there.

* * * * *

2 seed Arizona is the first school off the top two lines to fall.

Opening afternoon to Ivy League Princeton.

Tigers scored the last 9 points to steal the W.

* * * * *

Yeah, I’m a hoopaholic.

— c d kaplan