As many of you know, I live in Houston, Texas. I moved down here in 2001 after 30 years of being a North Carolinian and living all over the state – Eastern NC, Raleigh, Charlotte, & Chapel Hill.
My roommate during my first year of living in Houston was a friend of mine with whom I attended Business School at Carolina. He attended the University of Virginia for undergrad… so between us we covered 33% of the ACC schools (at the time) with our degrees. After the Pack lost to the Cavaliers in Raleigh, he sent me a quick email that I never shared on the blog. It went as follows –
“I thought I should extend a conciliatory hand and welcome you to the doldrums of hoops despair. Losing to UVA this year is no easy task, particularly when we play that scrub with the cheesy ‘stache for 35 minutes. Which leads to my next question: I know UVA will be in the market for a new coach, is State gonna look too? “
“Are we gonna look, too?
Is this a joke?
This year is nowhere close to being finished for us. You wait and see — we will be hovering around the NCAA bubble come our game at Virginia in March and we will help you guys purge yourselves of Gillen.
How do I know this?
Well…because it happens EVERY SINGLE YEAR. It’s called HISTORY. And, despite what our enlightened Athletics Director WISHES were the case…history repeats itself! (The reason that history repeats itself is because many people are too foolish to address the issues that create the history/results in the first place.)
I am confident that our next encounter will mean more to us than it will to UVa and therefore we will play with more intensity than the Cavs. I am confident in this because in EIGHT of NINE seasons of being coached by Herb Sendek, NC State has entered the last week of the regular season (and then the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament) HAVING TO WIN games just to get qualified for the NCAA Tournament. Why should this year be any different?
Our Athletics Director is LEE friggin FOWLER…he has a record of striving to simply squeek into the NCAA Tournament to become other team’s fodder for March success. With that said, I can be pretty confin the world would we should this year be any different?
The purpose of me sharing my reply is not to proclaim how right that I was about the season. Any moron can be right about something that happens in 8 of 9 seasons (not being assured a berth to the NCAA Tournament in the last week of the year). Studying trends and history is not rocket science.
Following State’s win at Virginia last Thursday, my roommate sent me the following:
You hearing any buzz on candidates for UVA’s hoops program? I hear message board chatter, (Barnes, Tubby, Brey, Gillespe) with some mid-major coaches being floated (Creighton, Wichita St coaches). Gimme a scoop, huh?
Glad our team could play on role in letting Herb navigate another year of mediocrity for you guys.
Mediocrity!?!?! Whatchyou talking about Willis?!? If only my friend “knew basketball” like Lee Fowler!!!
I wonder if he really needs to “know basketball” to have the mental capacity torecognize and judge “mediocrity,” as he calls it?
Does he need to “know basketball” to inherently know that in 8 of 9 basketball seasons of coaching at NC State, Herb Sendek has entered the ACC Tournament needing at least one win (if not needing to win the whole tournament) to simply qualify for an NCAA Tournament berth?
Is achieving a final Top 25 ranking in a single season out of nine really mediocre?
What about achieving a single ACC Tournament seed better than #4 in nine years?
Is it really “mediocre” to finish the regular season with an RPI around #88 to add to a nine year history of finishing better than #52 in the country only twice?
I must admit…I think that it is wonderful that our peers view us as only mediocre. I don’t think that I could argue with them if they called us failures.