Category Archives: Basketball

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

Elite 8 Cards, Take Advantage, Quell Quack

U of L’s commanding 60-42 Round of 16 W over Oregon gave new perspective to the post season’s Rule #1.

Which dictum, if you recall, reads like this: “You only play whom you play.”

Under normal circumstances, it applies to looking ahead in the bracket. Like, if in the gentlemen’s tournament, Houston finds itself peering past Oregon State, taking the Beavers for granted, while focusing on Baylor or Arkansas.

But, as we learned yesterday, it also applies to squad makeup.

Make no mistake, Jeff Walz’s Cardinals played their best game in awhile on Sunday, arguably its most complete all season.

But, they had help. In the form of Duck injuries and foul trouble. Continue reading Elite 8 Cards, Take Advantage, Quell Quack

Hoops & Pucks: Dancin’ on Saturday

OK then, getting in touch with my inner Paul Harvey, here’s the Rest of the Story.

The it’s-probably-interesting-only-to-me tale of my ’63 Loyola championship t-shirt, come and gone and coming again, sigh, later rather than sooner.

Yeah, I jump on the touch the hem of Sister Jean’s Rambler letter jacket as much as the next hoopaholic. But my affection for the maroon and gold is legit, and long-lived. The Professor and I were in the Hall when the underdog Ramblers bested reigning two-time national champ Cincy for the crown.

So, sometime years ago, surfing the interweb, looking for some garment to purchase I didn’t really need, I came across the maroon and gold beauty. All the better that I’d be able to lord it over my fellow hoopaholics at our next meeting.

At some point, I gave it away. Much to my chagrin this post season, when the lads from the Second City turned out to be the Darlings of the Dance.

I’d forgotten to whom I’d passed it along. Until last Monday, when I got a text from my pal, a Loyola grad, to whom I’d bestowed it. He included a photo. “You’re killin’ me here,” I responded.

Then I culled the Google for a duplicate, hopefully to arrive in time for Saturday’s Round of 16. Nuttn’ honey.

(Stick with me sports fans, I’ll get to the real stuff in just a sec. Bear with me. I need to vent.) Continue reading Hoops & Pucks: Dancin’ on Saturday

Cards start Slow then Roll, Monster Mash a-comin’? & More from Day 4

The Battle of the Behemoths is inevitable.

I, without a scintilla of prevarication, absolutely, positively guarantee it shall come to pass.

Walter Sobchak, mark it ten.

If not Baylor vs. Gonzaga, and more about that in just a sec, there shall be Godzilla vs. Kong at a cineplex near you starting this Thursday.

(FYI, there are actual odds on that battle. King Kong is -150. I’m goin’ with the ‘Zill, because it rhymes with the Ville.)

As for the Dance, the Bears vs. the Bulldogs is far from a given.

But, as much as I hate chalk, it would be a fitting end to this berserko season, and the Big Dance that always — always — delivers.

Here’s my analogy, a stretch perhaps. Won”t be my first, or the last. Continue reading Cards start Slow then Roll, Monster Mash a-comin’? & More from Day 4