Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Rock. Chalk (Note the lack of choke). Baby.

Damn. There is a God after all. The last time I was this amped up for a sequence of sporting events was, well, 20 years ago. Four rounds ago, I told my sister I didn't see a KU/UNC matchup happening this year, or anytime soon for that matter. In a flash, it was here, and the Jayhawks were destined -- I was sure -- to be eliminated by none other than Roy Williams' Tar Heels. When that insane spectacle of a game came and went, leaving 'Hawk Nation thrilled, floored, and hungover, I thought that that must've been our championship. Our moment in the sun was to go down in the books as sending Roy home. Never in a million years did I imagine the championship game would be so intense, so draining, so sweet.

I'm the first to admit -- Lord knows I took a lot of flack for it -- that just under seven minutes to go, I gave up. In my eyes, all hope was lost. John Calipari and his Memphis Tigers had the proverbial stranglehold on the game, and were prepared to send the 'Hawks home, again without the crown.

Fate had something else in mind.

I thought my friend Bean was insane when, at the seven-minute mark, he predicted overtime. In. Flipping. Sane. I was convinced that Kansas would be denied the title, Coach Self would be history, and Roy would secretly be please. Obviously, neither was true. Then, however, when the lost hope behind the lost hope began to fade, the inevitable, the absotively im-freaking-possible occurred.

I know there've been tons of last-minute/desperation attempts in the history of sports, but that three, for my money, was the ace of spades. That's right. A little Motorhead with your championship Tuesday never hurt. And then, the 'Hawks, knowing the historical significance of that Mario Chalmers tres, came out and dominated the overtime period. It was, and I don't think I'm alone, one of, if not, the best NCAA championship game I've seen this side of two decades. Yes. I'm biased. Sue me.

Lastly, before worrying about whether or not Self leaves for Oklahoma State, or Brandon Rush goes pro, or what have you, please click here, scroll to the comments, and note the one with the time stamp of March 17, 2008 @ 2:51 p.m. It has, for several weeks now, been my indisputable passion to type this closing statement.

Update: The naysayers must be the naysayers. It's inevitable. Here, however, is your non-Wikipedia, not-in-a-Microsoft-Excel-spreadsheet evidence that Chalmers' foot is behind the line. It's at the 2:17 mark. All apologies for the Linkin Park.


old no. 7 said...

So wait, I have to wait until NEXT year to watch KU lose in the tournament? That's going to throw off my whole schedule.

But even though Calipari and Rose totally gave that game away, congratulations. You deserve it, even if Chalmers' foot was clearly on the line. My glass is raised. Way to go.