Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Day of the Writer

The Wednesday before the NCAA tournament should be hallowed as the day of the writer. This is the day where good writers all around the country try to capture the magic of the potential. They tell the nation about the Winthrops, Davidsons and Oral Roberts' of the tournament. They employ metaphor and alliteration to bring us to a higher state of being. They lift us to that place that every person feels after the first time of watching Hoosiers. This is the feeling we get after watching Rudy and you go out to your car and dream that the empty parking lot is that lone field and there should be some lowly camera encapturing the profoundness of the moment.
On Thursday or Friday it is nearly guaranteed that an upset will happen. All of the nation waits for their prediction to be legitimized. But for all of the upsets over the years, most of the 15 seeds go home with nothing. For all that we might want to believe that Davidson fans will be in Dayton on Sunday, the student bus plans to be back on campus by 11 o clock on Friday night. Could it happen? Of course. Will it happen? Very unlikely.
This is why Wednesday is the best day of the tournament. Everyone believes because they want to. And in the end, our lifelong joys are never really produced by reality, but rather they come from faith. Faith in a universe of purpose. Faith in a person that we love. Faith in the Davids against the Goliaths.
This is what college basketball is all about. This is what we knew that we missed last year in the NIT. Last year, everyone said that we would rather lose in the NCAA tournament than win in the NIT. Why? Because of the Wednesday of the Underdog. There are no Wednesdays in the NIT. This day is dedicated to us.
The North Carolinas and Dukes can get all of the championship Mondays that they want. But they will never have the Wednesday of the Underdog.

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