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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

High Roller's Tourney Recap

Well that went by fast. A blur. It went so fast, I didn't even get to put up any posts. So here are a bunch of random thoughts about this past weekends AE tournament:

-That better be the last tournament in Binghamton until 2015. We've been there 3 of the 4 last years, and enough is enough. The drive there sucked, the weather sucked, and everything about that town sucked. We went out to the bars Friday night because it was early yet and we were looking for a good night out. What we found was that strip of 4 or 5 bars, and a fooseball table covered in red vomit. We didn't bother going out Saturday night.

-The tides are slowly turning in the America East. Albany got knocked out first round, and so did binghamton. Vermont and BU didn't make it out of the weekend alive. The two teams in the final? UMBC and Hartford. Three years ago we all would have laughed at the idea. But it's good for the conference. It got pretty old seeing Vermont and Albany in the finals.

-It was good to see more bands and cheerleaders make the trip to the tournament. Especially cheerleaders. And dance teams. Especially UMBC's dance team. I wasn't sure how to react to UMBC's featured twirler. She was very skilled, and good-looking, but it was just odd, because it was just her by herself twirling a baton. And then I felt bad for her when she dropped. It's weird, I don't feel bad when cheerleaders fall.

-Getting back to the tournament itself, and the job that Binghamton did hosting it, I've got to say they dropped that ball. In other words, aside from cheerleaders, dance teams, and bands, it was boring. No promotions, no t-shirts being tossed into the stands, no half court shots or even and contests at all. Infact, in 7 twenty-minutes halftimes, 3 half hours between session games, and 56 media timeouts, not one fan stepped foot on the court. I usually don't care about this stuff, but a lot of fans like the chance to win things or take part in contests and such, and it's just something to watch while you're sitting around. And no, the America East Fun Zone, or whatever they called it, doesn't make up for this misstep.

-From a BU fan's point of view, the Albany game was amazing. It was the most excited BU win I've been at in a very long time (since last tournament, I guess). With more than a couple BU fans, we made some noise in that arena. Just knocking off the two time repeating champions was a thrill. Must have been a bummer for Lillis and Wilson, but, so it goes. Nice to see those idiots with the mohawks look like jackasses. And it was nice to show up Will Brown after two tough losses to them this year.

-The Hartford game was different. We had no energy, it seemed. But I won't use the excuse that there was too little time between our 8:30 PM game and the 12 AM game. We just missed a lot of shots. Too many threes just didn't fall(3-20). And it's not like they were bad shots, either. We got open looks, but the shots just rimmed out, and few fell. Tyler was 0-6 on threes, and Corey was 1-6. That killed us. Our defense was great, keeping Hartford under 60, but John Holland was almost non-existant on offense.

-The tailgating was probably the best part of the weekend for me. It was a challenge, but the pouring rain made it even better. We had a sweet set up, with a big tarp tied from the gate of my truck over another car. We had a propane grill set up for egg mcmuffins, but we didn't have time to heat up the chili that I brought. We also had a charcoal grill with a cover but used it for a woodfire to keep us warm, and it actually worked pretty well. And the people walking by were no doubt impressed by our moxy. One person even said he respected everything about us, which really makes you feel good inside. So we'll do it again next year.

Keep your eye out for my tournament all-stars, which I'll write up in the next couple days.


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