Category Archives: Basketball

Hump Day Hustle: Shaq>Cards Saga, Fathers/ Sons, Portal Chortle +

There’s been a persistent mythos for decades among some Louisville Cardinal hoops fans like myself, who obsess about such matters.

Which is that, had Shaquille O’Neal not matriculated to LSU, he would have been a Cardinal. Some are even, to this day, of the opinion that he was definitely going to wear the Red & Black, but Dale Brown came with the Benjamins to lure him to Baton Rouge.

The latter of which delusions disregards the reality that Brown might have been only mediocre as a basketball coach, he would have been the star salesman among the Tin Men. Or anywhere. He could sell buggy whips in the late 20th C.. Even to folks not named Mistress Dominatata.

This lore has had more of a half life than my favorite of such. Magic Johnson wanting to play for the Cards, down bit at the half to St. Louis, when he was on a recruiting trip. Love the story. Great story. Never happened. Continue reading Hump Day Hustle: Shaq>Cards Saga, Fathers/ Sons, Portal Chortle +

Hump Day Hustle: Hoopaholism; Price of Fandom ++

This is not a regular meeting of Hoopaholics Anonymous, but I need to vent. So I shall.

My name is Seedy K, and I’m a hoopaholic.

I’m a lifelong Louisville Cardinal fan.

I understand that change and transition is more prevalent — rampant even — in DI basketball than ever. Only three schools, I’m advised, haven’t had a player enter the Portal. UCLA, Michigan and one other.

Assistant coaches are scattering about.

And, I realize that at U of L the moves have been explicable — DJ to the pros, Nickelberry to LaSalle — as well as inexplicable — Malik Williams returning — and mysterious, i.e. the nature of the situation where the contracts of Luke Murray and Dino Gaudio weren’t renewed.

There is turmoil throughout my most favorite sport. I accept it and understand it, even if I’m old school enough to really not like it. It’s not only here with my team.

I also understand that matters really won’t settle down at U of L until the entire NCAA quicksand is a thing of the past.

That said, there’s something about the Quinn Slazinski abdication that doesn’t settle OK with me. Not talking about the kid. He has the right to do what he wants. All the more power to him. Continue reading Hump Day Hustle: Hoopaholism; Price of Fandom ++

The Monday After: Gloom, but the Sun Peeks Through

You don’t need me to underscore that the Monday after the First Saturday in May is always kind of a let down.

So, when it dawned gray and damp, I’m thinking this feels appropriate.

Especially after a glorious Oaks and Derby Day that was much needed, for reasons I don’t need to explain.

After throwing myself into the Derbytime fray for decades, I’ve stepped back in recent times. Actually I’m usually in New Orleans, but my the JazzFest is currently set for October.

If they build it, I will come.

Even though I don’t go to the track, and party like it’s 1999, like I did in 1999, I love the energy, excitement, sense of community spirit those two minutes of racing bring to our burg. Other than, you know, almost getting knocked down walking into the grocery by a woman wearing a hat the size of a beach umbrella.

But here we always are, the Monday after, a little tired, whether we did the track to death, or are worn from over-gardening and carrying too many bags of mulch.

The sunshine is that we are almost, just about, on the cusp of some sense of normalcy. Continue reading The Monday After: Gloom, but the Sun Peeks Through

Hump Day Hustle: QBs x 3, Sound of Silence ++

So, yeah, it’s Thurby, not The Day Before.

Mea friggin’ culpa.

Feel free to employ your barrister at the bar and file a Cause of Action.

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What’s your name/ Is it Mary or Sue/ What’s your name/ Do I stand a chance with you?

Wonder what Don and Juan are up to these days?

Anyway, former Cardinal star/ Heisman winner Lamar Jackson is approached on the street by a stranger. The guy says, “You’re a football player?” Or, something to that effect.

Jackson, as I’ve said many times before, is a really nice guy, ever engaging, tells the fellow he’ll give him a hundred bucks if he can say his name.

The guy makes a couple of wrong guesses about what position Mr. I Am A Quarterback might play.

LJ gives him the Benjamin anyway.

Speaking of former beloved U of L signal callers, Teddy B is house hunting in a new locale yet again. Late of Tobacco Road, he’s off to the Rockies to play under the watchful eyes of John Elway. Continue reading Hump Day Hustle: QBs x 3, Sound of Silence ++

Hump Day Hustle: Cards crush Cats, Warrior Wonderfulness ++

Of course, I’ll get U of L’s hammer down of the Cats on the diamond, and another other sports item that’s caught my attention (and perhaps yours, though perhaps not), but I feel compelled to start with . . .

. . . Steph Curry.

Like most in my neck of the woods, I much prefer college hoops to that at the proverbial “next level.” But after the first Monday in April, I start paying attention to the play for pay guys. Because, you know, it’s the only game goin’.

And, the playoffs, when every possession makes a difference, can be pretty compelling.

But, bored Saturday night — thunderworks, especially pop ones hold little interest here — I checked out the Warriors/ Celtics. Where Mr. Curry and Jayson Tatum were putting on a mano a mano battle. They were throwing in treys from Newberry Street. Some from Paul Revere’s route to Lexington. Continue reading Hump Day Hustle: Cards crush Cats, Warrior Wonderfulness ++

Whither U of L Hoops?: Some Random Musings

It’s been awhile since we’ve chatted about Louisville Cardinal basketball.

Long past due, don’t you think?

So we will, but I feel compelled to commence, I have to own, with some schadenfreude. Blame it on Lucifer, he makes me do it.

But when I watched the video click this a.m. with my morning java, my smile was as wide as the home stretch of the Derby. Delight ensued.

There was significant Cards’ objet de la haine from not so long ago, Grayson Allen, former Dukie now a Memphis Griz, at the charity stripe with a chance to ice a W, his team up a deuce with two seconds to play.

A 91% FT shooter, he double whiffed. Missed ’em both.

Allowing the amazing Luka Doncic, for whom U of L fans haven’t a bit of negative animus, to drain a game-winning triple at the buzzer, while stumbling forward and awkwardly off an opponent’s foot.

Should I feel guilty that Allen’s choke job brought me joy? Naaaaah! Continue reading Whither U of L Hoops?: Some Random Musings

Baylor: Shouldn’t We Have Known All Along?

There is but small comfort knowing I’m among the many erstwhile college hoops scribes, with a delusional belief in the power of our observations of the game we love so much, who misfired. Or, were leery of pulling the trigger.

We woke up this morning with egg on our faces, before even heading into the kitchen to make breakfast.

It’s not that I picked Gonzaga to win the title. I did not. You can go look.

But I certainly did not listen to myself.

If only I’d had the confidence to listen to my convictions, I’d be able to lord my “expertise” over all this morning after.

On Sunday, after the national semis, I wrote this about the eventual champion: “In its semi-final smackdown, Baylor looked, well, let’s be frank here, UN BEAT A BLE.” Continue reading Baylor: Shouldn’t We Have Known All Along?

Hoopaholic’s Countdown to Tipoff

What I still haven’t figured out yet in advance of watching tonight’s to die for Gonzaga vs. Baylor clash for the title is caffeination level.

I have the same conundrum every year on the last Monday of the season.

I’m an early to bed early to rise hoopaholic. The 9:20 tip time is frankly mighty close to when I usually hit the hay. I forget from year to year exactly when I should consume an energy boosting beverage, so that I’ll be alert the whole game, but be able to fall asleep after One Shining Moment?

Do I take one of the several green tea laced drinks in the fridge? A cup of joe? And, more important, how much and at what time?

Decisions, decisions.

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Other than that, I’m wondering just how historical is this matchup between clearly the two finest squads in the land? Teams that were supposed to be the best heading into the season, and remained the best throughout. Continue reading Hoopaholic’s Countdown to Tipoff

Now for the One We’ve Been Waiting For

What a long strange trip it’s been.

After a Bill Waltonish, did we really swallow the brown acid, twirly bird stop and start season we have been forced to watch from our recliners, we get to the One We’ve Been Waiting For.

Ali vs Frazier.

Lily vs. Chuck, Spike & Samuel L..

Attila the Hun vs Hannibal Barca.

Godzilla vs. Kong.

Gonzaga vs. Baylor.

But, oh my, how about Saturday night’s prelude? Continue reading Now for the One We’ve Been Waiting For

A March Madness of Historical Proportions

Professor Jefferson Davis Futch was a history wonk of the highest order.

He loved the anecdotia, the lurid back stories that made the subject matter come alive. So taken was he by the peccadilloes of the Medici clan, which he shared with almost frothing at the mouth fervor, we never made it much past the Renaissance in History of Western Civ 101.

I couldn’t help but think of him years later, when while walking through Paris, I came upon the building where Catherine de’ Medici, the sign said, introduced the use of the fork to French society.

Professor Futch would have known which of her courtiers she would have bedded that evening.

I haven’t the slightest idea if the prof — as opposed to my longtime hoopaholic pal, the Professor — cares about hoops at all.

But, if he does, he’d know this college basketball season, and this NCAA tourney, is like no other. One for the history books, we might say. Continue reading A March Madness of Historical Proportions