Saturday, March 26, 2016

Nevada's Hungry Like The Wolf For A Tournament Title

For once, I won't talk about movies or MST3K.
I want to talk about college basketball in Nevada, and how it's getting some national attention.
The University of Nevada Wolf Pack is in the finals of the College Basketball Invitational, which is around "little majors" level in the college basketball world. It's a notch below the NIT, but it gives a nice preview of up-and-coming programs. Nevada will take on Morehead State, located in Kentucky and part of the Ohio Valley Conference. It has a very good record and even better at home.

Because it's been quite a while since I've been in a college basketball playoff game, I took in last week's games against Eastern Washington and Vermont. It's the first time I've done that. After reaching the semis of the Mountain West Tournament, I was hoping Nevada would make a good show. Thanks to Cameron Oliver and Marqueze Coleman, they're doing even better.

The better experience was the game against Vermont in the semifinals. I was actually in the lower students section because it was spring break. It's not every day you can see a college playoff game for ten bucks. This was the view:

It's been quite a while since I sat with students at college games. You can tell who the superfans are by what they wear:

I also learned an interesting tradition: using this hand sign to make sure the Wolf Pack sink those free throws:

Somehow it works when the Pack go to the other basket.

The finals, unlike the NCAA, are bets two out of three. So, even if the Pack don't win Monday night, they have a chance to take it all if they win next Wednesday and Friday. No matter what, it's still history being made in Reno basketball. Maybe the D-League Bighorns can top that by doing well in the playoffs.

Of course, I should give the baseball team a try, since I live a half-mile from the stadium, and soccer is coming up, too. Reno is much more than slot machines, guys.

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