Blue Sunday: Looking for Levity at the Ballyard

sadI am a Louisville Cardinal fan.

While I admit rooting for Wisconsin last night, I don’t consider myself a hater.

I have nothing but admiration for the run Kentucky is on, how the team has jelled, how John Calipari keeps working to make the season work. That Aaron Harrison has morphed into Robert Horry, making big shot after big shot to win three straight over higher rated and higher seeded foes in the NCAA is nothing short of astounding. He, his team, his coach, have my unbridled respect.

When I read that the Tattoo Guy, Tyler Austin Black, was offered two freebies from a national reporter to the title game in Dallas, and is driving there with a pal as I write this, and that it will be only the second Wildcats game this lifelong fan has ever seen in person, I could only smile and genuinely be happy for him. It’s way cool.

All that said, and reiterating my highest regard for what this very young, very talented, well-coached UK team is doing, I am a bit beside myself today. As I was last weekend when my team’s arch rival knocked us off the dance floor.

I got the blues.

* * * * *

So, needing an antidote, I headed out to Patterson Stadium for a dose of red & black.

My Cardinal nine was playing U of L’s other big, long time rival, Memphis State.

When I arrived, the guys in white were already down 3-1 to the — Say it ain’t so — blue-clad visitors.

Things got bluer still. The Tiger hitters kept blasting rockets through the gap between the first and second sackers.

The Cardinal highlight was Cole Sturgeon’s bullseye rifle shot of a peg to the hot corner, where third baseman Alex Chittenden tagged out a visitor, attempting to go 1st to 3d on one of those hits.1

Other than that “highlight,” it was blue on blue, heartache on heartache at 3d & Central.

When I left — When I felt compelled to leave — it was 6-1 Memphis State, and they had more ducks on the pond.2

* * * * *

That fans of Kentucky and Louisville hurl epithets at each other, refer to each other with profane, derogatory names, I find disgusting. I’d get legitimately irked last season, when Cardinal fans couldn’t get 5 words into chatting about the championship, without dissing UK or its fan base.

That fans of Kentucky and Louisville more often than not root for teams playing their rival, I understand.3

So, yeah, it’s been a blue, blue, blue Sunday, kind of like an Elvis Christmas without her.

I can’t wait to see what happens Monday night. The outcome shall be an amazing story however the game turns out.

Will I feel less blue Tuesday morning if UConn, a team my team beat three times by a total of 55 points, wins?

Probably not.

I’m a Louisville Cardinal fan.

My team lost last week. Such is our love in these for this glorious endeavor called college basketball, that something inside of us dies most every spring when the season ends. Except when our team is the last one standing.

I’m a Louisville Cardinal Fan.

Last season was sweet.

Today I’m tangled up in blue.

— Seedy K

8 thoughts on “Blue Sunday: Looking for Levity at the Ballyard

  1. I am presently watching Notre Dame without their best player crush Maryland in the women’s semis. That is what Kentucky will do to UConn tomorrow night even without Will CS. The bad news is that Kentucky will win almost every national championship a la UCLA as long as Cal stays. He is a pretty good coach, better than the Rick, probably not as good as Jeff Walz, and a great recruiter, however he may do it. The good news is that both Kornheiser and Wilbon of Pardon the Interruption both are adamant that Cal will leave after this year, their reason being that he will never be able to satisfy BBN because there will inevitably be a championship they won’t win. We can only hope they are right. By the way, my opening line tomorrow night is Kentucky minus 40. You may want to reassess if it falls to 35 or so. All we can be sure of is that it will be a beatdown.

  2. I heard an interesting commentary on NPR where the reported offered this (paraphrasing): When Cal re-stocks the shelves with another class of 5 star recruits, how will he ever again convince them that the regular season matters?

  3. How you can profess to have the “highest regard” for that cesspool of crap that Cal represents and puts forth at that “school” and profess to be a Louisville Cardinal Fan boggles my mind. UK is everything that is wrong with college sports. I believe if you truly hold UK in such high regard you should start supporting the NBA D league along with Tottenham.

  4. I think I felt like UK was going to get its NC in 2012 with one and dones, and then U of L could assert its response: “hey, seniors are just as good as one and dones,” with a NC in 2013. That was extra satisfying. But so short lived as it turned out to not be true when Cal just assembled an even more highly ranked collection of one and dones, and knocked out all the mere pretenders of actual student athletes. It’s gross.

    As a die-hard U of L fan I am sad that our team was underseeded and forced to face our archenemy in an early round and that we had to say good bye to beloved seniors in such an ugly fashion. But my sadness is exponentially worse because the UK “we need banners” juggernaut has taken over, with Cal using his loophole, best alternative to boosters paying players.

    Is this how people felt about Wooden winning all those banners? I don’t know, I wasn’t around back then. But because I have the same blues as you, I’ll be rooting for the Huskies to pull off their last upset of the season, whilst expecting a 20 point win for UK.

  5. You indeed left the ballpark a little early yesterday, but I don’t blame you given how things were going at the time. It was quite a stirring rally though over a pretty decent Memphis team.

  6. Cardizen, people did not feel that way about Wooden. They respected him. He got Alcindor, and Walton, surrounded them with terrific players and.taught them to play basketball…as a team. But one and done? Lew Alcindor couldn’t even play varsity basketball in 1965. He was on the freshmen team that beat the varsity. No, people envied but respected UCLA and Wooden. They were just too damn good.

    1. And Sam Gilbert’s $$$$ didn’t hurt. Mr. Wooden wasn’t quite the saint most people think he was.

  7. @Jason: Yeah, I shoulda stayed. Would have taken the edge off the day. Sigh. Glad the Cards came back.

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