My Obligatory March Madness Post
a/k/a/ Duke Sucks!
I went to St. John's University. I happened to be attending the school at a time when their basketball program was at the top of its game [I also worked in the sports information office at the time, but I'll save those stories for the tell all book]. Final Four, ranked #1 a few times - it was a good time to be on the Queens campus. Chris Mullin. Walter Berry. Mark Jackson. That was some team.
The Big East was a pretty good conference in general, which made for nice rivalries. There was one out-of conference rival, but it doesn't really count because everyone hates Duke. And it was more or less the Duke fans we hated and not necessarily the team. Though I never liked that Danny Ferry character (later, that hatred would be transferred to Christian Laettner). Come to think of it, I hated more opposing players and teams than I liked and/or respected. Indiana? Hah. Given the chance I would have kicked Bobby Knight in the nuts. UNLV? They were like the al Qaeda of college basketball. Kansas? Danny Manning was a sissy boy, I tell you. A sissy boy! A few year later I tried to hate on the Michigan Wolverines and Glenn Rice, but at that point, college basketball had lost its luster for me and all I could dredge up was a mild dislike for any one team. Except for Syracuse and Duke. While vague hatred can dissipate, bitter rivalry never leaves your soul.
Anyhow, back to the 84-85 seaosn. Our real rivals at that time were the Georgetown Hoyas. In 1985 three of the four Final Four teams were Big East teams; St. John's, Villanova and Georgetown. I think I hated Georgetown more than any other team. Oh, I hated Syracuse. I loathed Ron Seikaly. I don't remember why, I just remember yelling nasty things at him from the safety of the behind-the-net seats at MSG. But Georgetown was the be-all and end-all of sports loathing. At that moment in time, I despised them more than the Rangers, Mets and Red Sox combined. So of course, that's who SJU ended up playing in the semi-finals. We watched the game at a fellow student's house. There must have been 100 of us, at least. Drunk, loud, obnoxious and ready to lord it over Georgetown fans when we won. I think we even had the idea to drive down to the Georgetown campus after the game and randomly moon people.
You probably know how that one ended. The hated Hoyas beat the crap out of the Redmen (SJU hadn't changed to the politically correct Red Storm yet) by a score of 77-59 (insert several curse words directed at David Wingate here). It was devastating. I didn't eat for days.
Well, not really. But I was kinda bummed for a week or so, until the day of the big final game came along.
All Big East final. Georgetown v. Villanova. Ewing v. errr.....Rollie Massimino. Damn, I can't think of a single player from that Villanova team. Hang on.
Right! Ed Pinckney!
So, the game. Villanova played nearly perfect basketball. The final score of 66-64 does not do justice to the beauty of the game the Wildcats played that night.
I felt as if justice was somehow served. Georgetown lost the championship, and the title still got to stay in the Big East.
Afterthought: I wonder what ever happened to these guys. Bill Wennington, Walter Berry, Willie Glass...somewhere in my garage is an NCAA basketball autographed by the SJU Final Four team. I'm sure I could sell it, but there's too many good memories attached to it. Besides, it's my ex husband's. It's the one thing I haven't given back to him yet.
Duke sucks! Go uhh....UConn, I guess!