Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A DC Basketball Team Worth Cheering For?!?

Now that I've got a lot more free fan time on my hands, I'm keeping a closer eye on the Georgetown Hoyas basketball team. I'm a die-hard UNC Tarheel fan, and will be one till I die, but I haven't been to a game in Chapel Hill since I graduated from my Negro College HBCU. I love going to college basketball games, but adopting a local team has been hard. Maryland plays in the ACC, which automatically rules them out. Howard is in the MEAC, which also rules them out, but they also suck, which rules them out more. AU and GW are too deep in the city and never play on TV. Mason, schmason.

When I moved to DC in the mid 90's, The Allen Iverson Show was in full effect, and games at the old Cap Centre were an event. Once AI skipped town to The Association, the program fell into disarray. Coach John Thompson had some very public offcourt issues that caused him to step down. His replacement, whose name I forget, but who looked eerily like Burt Reynolds, did his best to run the team into the ground. Thing were so bad, I distinctly remember being offered a half dozen free Hoyas tickets one time I filled up my gas tank at some Exxon near Union Station. I refused. Thanks, but no thanks.

A few years ago, the school took a reach and hired the old ballcoach's son, John Thompson III from Princeton. The rest, as they say, is history. The team has rebounded to the top of the Big East, routinely pulls the best local recruits (sorry Maryland) and even trounced my Tarheels from the NCAA's in a notably disappointing game a few seasons ago. The Hoyas are back!

Last night, they went into Hartford and absolutely beat the living crap out of the number 2 ranked UConn Huskies. The new school Hoyas are a bit more guard/perimeter oriented, but they still play the same smothering "D", and freshman center Greg Monroe looks like a potential one-and-done.

So, since I'm done with that other team, I'm going to jump on the Hoya bandwagon, and might even catch a game, provided I can find that Exxon again.

Hoyas Topple Huskies in the Big East Opener [NYTimes]

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