Damn, it feels good to be a Wildcat! The Cats are back in the Sweet 16 with a shot at the #1 seed in a “no lose situation” and Billy Clyde is back in basketball! All of this, on the first full day of spring in the bluegrass! I am not sure if Donald Trump’s current wife even woke up to this much goodness this morning! Did you see Trump’s roast? “The Situation”? Child please. He almost was made Looker of the Week for that attempt at comedy.
With last week being the start of this year’s Road to the Final Four, or something like that, Lookers were abundant. Blown leads, bad calls, and terrible losses were all over the bracket over the weekend. On Friday, after weeks of anticipation, the George Rogers Clark cards met the Eastern Eagles in the 2nd round of the Sweet 16 in Rupp Arena. With most of the TGR crew from wild and wacky Winchester and Fertig hailing from Eastern High, the match-up was billed as “The Battle of TGR”. In the end, GRC was throttled by Eastern and I rode back to the tailgate with my tail tightly tucked between my legs. Fertig’s Eagles were able to celebrate for less than 24 hours because they were upset by Christian County less than a day later. Once again, the Sweet 16 makes fools of us all.
Then there was the Big East who sent 11 teams to this year’s tournament. The “super conference” sent well over half of their schools into the first weekend, but only 2 survived. Oddly enough, the two teams who managed to win, Marquette and UConn, beat a Big East team in order to advance to the Sweet 16. The Big East is taking the same stance as Michael Jackson’s father, if you can’t beat anyone else’s, beat your own.
I truly looked hard at making the University of Louisville our Looker of the Week. The problem is, MOST of the time, our Looker is someone or something who has done something silly, stupid, or embarrassing. The thing is, I loved the fact Morehead State knocked the Cards off so much, I don’t consider anything they did silly, stupid, or embarrassing. I f**kking loved it! Well done cards!
In what Rick Pitino did in a quick 15 seconds, Pitt and Butler did in 2.2, embarrassed themselves and their families. By now, I am sure most of you are aware of the situation Pitt and Butler found themselves in Saturday night. With the clock running down, Butler’s Andrew Smith hit a turn-around jumper to give Butler what seemed to be a game winning 1 point lead over the top seeded Pitt Panthers. With only a few seconds left, Butler only had to play good defense without fouling for a moment or two. Enter former Bryan Station Defender, Shelvin Mack. With 2.2 seconds left, Mack inexplicably fouled Pitt’s 5th year, redshirt, grey shirt, graduate-assistant, Gilbert Brown with only 2.2 on the clock, giving Pitt’s guard a chance to not only tie the game, but to take the lead.
In a split second, Mack had become the donkey of the tournament. Brown stepped to the line and sank the first free-throw to tie the game, on the second shot, he missed, and chaos ensued. Butler’s Matt Howard came away with the rebound and everyone in the building and watching on television KNEW the game was going to overtime. All Pitt had to do was let Butler get the board and run out the last:08 seconds, enter Nasir Robinson. On Brown’s second free-throw, Robinson went over Matt Howard’s back and drew the whistle of the referee, sending Howard to the foul line where he hit one free throw and then missed the 2nd one intentionally, ending the game.
It would be easy for us to make Nasir Robinson our TGR Looker of the Week. It would also be very easy to make Mack the Looker for the “near miss” dumb move of fouling Brown. But, before Howard made it to the foul line to win the game, I already knew who our Looker of the Week was. The first question I asked, “Why would you even have your team on the free throw line during Brown’s foul shot?” Why not clear the lane and the worst that can happen is that Butler heaves one 95 feet to beat you. The worst thing that can happen if you leave them around the lane is exactly what happened. If Butler fails to sling one in from 95 feet, the worse thing that can happen is overtime. After Brown ties the game on the first shot, take your guys off the lane! By leaving them there, you are encouraging them to attempt a tip-in or a rebound, which makes the possibility of an over the back call very likely.
Congratulations to Mr. Jamie Dixon, this week’s TGR Looker of the Week! Blame no one but yourself Dixon!