For my part, I'm a little underslept and I was dead tired last night. I nodded off during the last minute of game action when the outcome was pretty much no longer in doubt. I tell you this because last night's game is one I would not have missed as a basketball fan, a classic of talent and action, skill and speed and good coaching. It was so unlike some of the blowouts we've seen, or the Butler/ UConn rockfight that was all about coaching and making hardwood play like newly-wet clay.
That game was a thrill, and I am happy to have seen it. I'd like to see it again.
Every major site has a recap link, so I'll just go with Sport Illustrated's to kick things off. Louisville's celebration in photos is worth a look; injured guard Kevin Ware got to cut down the nets. Of course, Kevin Ware's story inspired the Cardinals.
Rick Pitino also inspired the Cardinals, by promising to get a tattoo; Kevin Ware suggests a lower back tattoo, known in the business as a "tramp stamp." Save the public joking for later, we all want to see Pitino with a tramp stamp and make the requisite jokes. And by the way, see how it's been a really good week for Pitino and the family. Bringing the title to the other school in the Commonwealth leaves him on top of the world.
And of course, we can't look at links of the game without a GIF of Spike Albrecht becoming a cult hero. You'll be telling people "yo, remember when Spike Albrecht went OFF in the national championship game? That dude was ready for the big stage. The best Forget a Heat Check, I'm Hot Right Now GIF.
But Spike couldn't save them. A quartet of videos filled with Michigan Wolverine sad faces for your viewing pleasure. Yes, one team has to be sad.
USA Today paints the picture from the Michigan side: "Few words were necessary, but Beilein said them anyway. He told his dear friends and his players' parents how he'd been trying to build a successful program the right way. He told them how the Wolverines made so much progress this season. He told them, emphatically, 'The best is yet to come.'"
But again - what a game!
Bill Connelly on the triumph of the game for college basketball fans:
Five thoughts on Mich-L'ville: 1. That's exactly what cbb should be: aggressive, athletic, smart, reasonably up-tempo … and actually fun.— Bill Connelly (@SBN_BillC) April 9, 2013
Andy Katz agrees with that assessment.
Rick Pitino, Bernard King, Richie Guerin and others were elected to the Hall of Fame. Bernard King, the former Knick, had been nominated six times and finally broke through the Hall voting. Both Carmelo Anthony and Mike Woodson felt it was a long time coming; King played from 1977-1993 with the Knicks and the Nets among others. His tenure and Rick Pitino's Knick tenure overlapped while Pitino was an assistant with the Knicks.
Also elected: Jerry Tarkanian of UNLV, Gary Payton, Dawn Staley, and others.
Tim Cluess reaffirms his commitment to Iona in light of recent overtures from Hofstra basketball. Hopefully this reaffirmation comes with some kind of salary bump