Well folks it is a big night in my sports world and I'll be quite involved.
So here it is, it's all on the table for the SIU Salukis and the consensus is that we got some work to do. With 4 of our last 5 games being in conference, we've got major work to do. The non-conference is the nationally televisied "ESPN BracketBuster" game is major to solidify our spot in the NCAA Tourney, maybe bump us up a seed, heck if we lose that basically puts us in the NIT as sad as it is to say. Of our four games, two of them are at home and two are against first place teams. There's a three-way tie for first place and we've split against one of the teams (Wichita State.) We have a road game at Creighton which is must win and our last game is at home against the pre-season conference favorite Northern Iowa. We've lost quite a lot of heart breakers lately, usually the home fans will get the players up, hopefully the Dawg Pound doesn't let us down tonight. So this is it, the rest of this month is all about the MVC. We are the 4 time defending Missouri Valley Conference champions and I believe the Dawgs will not relinquish that title without a fight! I believe that this is going to be rough and difficult but I think they can prevail. Will they, only time will tell, but the only thing we can do is support our team and hope for the best. We need to win 4 out of these 5, in fact I'm hoping we finish with a clean sweep of the end of the season and go into the conference tournament with momentum. If we can't and end up in a tie for the conference lead or we go into the tournament without a title, I think we will be extra-motivated to win our first ever conference tournament championship because we will most likely need it to get into the tournament. GO DAWGS!
UNC-Duke. The best rivalry in college basketball is UNC/Duke, no if, ands, nor buts about it, it's the best in the business. It might be the best rivalry not only in college sports but maybe in all of sports but only on the basis that this is amateurs and not over-paid professionals. You're talking about a rivalry that is seperated by 8 miles. You're talking about a rivalry with great coaches like Kryzezewski, Dean Smith & Roy Williams. Great players like Jordan, Worthy, Carter, Dawkins, Hill, Brand from back in the day. UNC-Duke you're talking about recruiting wars that seperated families (Jason and John Capel for example.) UNC-Duke you're talking about public school versus private school. You're talking ACC/ESPN supremacy. You talk about Duke and you think Kryzezewskiville, the Crazies, the dudes in suits wiping up the court because Duke can afford it. You think UNC and you've got the factory that created Jordan, Stackhouse and Vince Carter and the only reason Carolina Blue is popular. Duke-Carolina is the Yankees-Red Sox of college hoops. Duke representing the Evil Empire of college basketball getting an all-american bench squad that could start for other teams. Carolina represent the Red Sox, they can compete but yeah its just not fair.
Basically, tonights a big night, but I won't be able to watch Duke-Carolina tonight because I'll be at the SIU Arena cheering on those Dawgs that I pay $14K to bleed Saluki Maroon. So I finish this blog by saying GO DAWGS! GO HEELS!