Proving Their Point

For the last few weeks I’ve just been waiting for Connecticut to lose.  I can’t really explain why, but I was never a true believer in this UConn team making a significant tournament run. I can think back to when I first watched UConn early in the season at the Maui tournament and thinking “Damn, this Kemba Walker is special”.   But after his scoring took a dip as the season went along and his team traded wins and losses throughout the regular season I just hopped off the wagon.  Why wouldn’t I?  Jim Calhoun and his boys in blue and white were losing 7 of 11 games coming down the stretch in February and March.  I submitted a short piece in the Times Union newspaper this past week saying that the fact that VCU was ever in a position to face the ‘big dogs’ of college hoops, let alone win, is fundamentally my favorite part of sports.  And although it’s not the same scale, the same goes for UConn.  Who among us believed with their whole heart that UConn would have a chance to win the national championship?  I look at the March Madness pool of 90+ people that I was in and only 14 thought that UConn would end up in Houston.  Of those 14, only four have them in the championship.  They’re not David, but this isn’t Goliath either.  Even Saturday night against Kentucky, the Huskies were still beating the odds.  If I had known ahead of time that UConn would have five more turnovers than the Wildcats, less than half the offensive rebounds, shoot 1-12 from three and that Kemba wouldn’t score 20 points, I probably would have put the house on Calipari and Co… and again the Huskies would have had me looking for some place to live.  To pile on the improbability, 56 points was the lowest total UConn has had in a win all season.  Jim Calhoun and his Band of Brothers find ways to win.  Period.  If UConn beats Butler Monday night, take a good hard look at Calhoun and Kemba as they climb that ladder and snip their strip of nylon net, because it’s likely the last time you see either of them at UConn.

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