Friday, January 22, 2010
Afternoon Linkage: Annals of court-storming
By Eamonn Brennan
Have a link you want, um, linked? A new college hoops blog you'd like to share? An interest in sending me recipes so I can stop eating Hot Pockets for dinner? Follow me on Twitter, send me your stuff, and accomplish all three. Now, links:
Imagine my shock last night as I learned, via a Twitter friend, that UCLA students had rushed the court after a one-point win over Washington, a mediocre team in a bad conference likely headed for a one-berth postseason. Scandalized, I emailed Diamond, who was actually at the game, and he said students sort of half-rushed the court before they were stopped by Pauley Pavilion security personnel. Hooray for security personnel! UCLA is the most storied program in all of college basketball. It is having a down year, but just two years ago it was riding a wave of pro talent to one Final Four after the next. Had this court storm occurred, it would have gone on record as the worst, least-deserved court storm of all-time, and this is coming from someone that more often than not doesn't care about court storms. (My latest post on the topic might insinuate the contrary, but really, I usually don't care.) Bruins Nation was likewise upset, writing, "It was definitely exhilarating moment. Apparently too exhilarating for bunch of folks in the Bruin Den to lose all perspective and attempt to rush the court. Come one people, show a modicum of respect to the banners hanging in our rafters. Don't act like a D-2 program which is all excited about beating a mediocre, NIT-bound Washington team which still hasn't won a single road game this season. It makes our student section look pathetic and embarrassing. Thankfully the security turned them away." UCLA fans: High five your Pauley security guard next time you go to the arena. They're heroes, you know.
Rick Majerus is not happy in the Atlantic 10. According to Majerus -- whose St. Louis team is having a pretty solid year so far -- the flights are too long, the East Coast cities are too expensive, and the academic situation too difficult on his players, who he says are "in peril" from missing so many classes when the Billikens fly to play their A-10 counterparts. It's not often you hear a coach openly campaign for a conference switch (Majerus makes it clear the he wants to be in the Missouri Valley, which makes more sense geographically), but hey, this is Rick Majerus. Rick Majerus says funny things sometimes.
Oh, and speaking of power rankings, here's SB Nation's blog poll, which combines the votes of the network's college basketball bloggers in the same way as the AP poll combines media members' votes. Always a fun comparison.
And last but not least, some guy named Dick Vitale weighs in with some of his favorite home court advantages in college hoops. Clemson, stand up!