UConn defies the implausible

So I was wrong. No tears in sight.

All’s well that ends well: UConn 60, Kentucky 54.

Unbelievable, the inconceivable run was for real. Implausible it seemed, unimaginable, improbable, unthinkable, mind-boggling.

UConn in the NCAA winner’s circle, cutting the nets, lifting the trophies. Kentucky the runner up, having come together when it counted, coming close, but falling short.

Congratulations to the Huskies, congratulations to the American Athletic Conference, congratulations to all underdogs everywhere.

The Huskies adding to their list of national championships: 1999, 2004, 2011 and, now, 2014.

The University of Louisville basketball program proudly passes the championship mantle to University of Connecticut. Last team standing in 2014.

UofL basketball refocuses as practice begins

The defending national champion University of Louisville basketball team begins practice Saturday, the beginning of a new season only four weeks away.

My, how time flies. Just yesterday, April 8th, the Cardinals were cutting down the nets in the Georgia Dome, celebrating with fans, family, friends and teammates at the KFC Yum! Center.UofL-Celebration-UofLCardGame-455x500

Rick Pitino, Tom Jurich, Jim Ramsey making speeches, proclaiming how great it was to be a Louisville Cardinal, with a table full of trophies in front of them on a makeshift stage. Gorgui Dieng and Peyton Siva thanking the fans, saying goodbye one more time.

That was then, this is now. As fun as it has been celebrating a third national championship, watching the endless array of Internet videos, each trying to outdo each other, there comes a time to move forward.

Multiple reasons to be optimistic as a new season nears. The core of the team returns, led by All American candidate Russ Smith, a calm and confident Luke Hancock, a seasoned Chane Behanan, the monster dunking Montrelz Harrell, a trimmer Wayne Blackshear, the invulnerable Stephan Van Treese and a cupboard full of talented newcomer guards, including Anton Gill, Terry Rozier and Chris Jones.

Kevin Ware will be along shortly as well, already dunking during rehabilitation.

And speaking of mishaps, have you noticed that no UofL player was injured during summer pickup games. No torn shoulders, no high ankle sprains or ACL tears. Really unusual, at least for the UofL basketball program. So far, so good.

UofL tips off the season with an exhibition game against Kentucky Wesleyan on Oct. 29.

2013-14 Basketball Schedule

NCAA Championship goes postal

postalPostmarked and ready-to-frame art commemorating the University of Louisville’s national championship and national runner-up teams in college basketball went on sale at the Main Post Office on Gardiner Lane in Louisville Monday. There are five different versions of the panels, selling for $30 and $40. Need frames? All frames are half off at Hobby Lobby on Breckinridge Lane.

Derby Day another excuse for UofL fans to party

University of Louisville alumni will have plenty reasons to celebrate across the nation Saturday in addition to the traditional Kentucky Derby parties, and many will be wearing championship apparel. Alumni parties are planned far and wide.

The University of Louisville marching band will play the traditional version of My Old Kentucky Home once again at the 139th Kentucky Derby.
The University of Louisville marching band will play the traditional version of My Old Kentucky Home once again at the 139th Kentucky Derby.
  • Los Angeles: Dave and Tammy Radan, members of UofL’s Southern California Alumni Club, are hosting a Derby Watch party they promise “will knock your hooves off – from Mint Juleps to an original Kentucky home cooked spread, including everything from burgoo and fried chicken …” No country ham? Guests are encouraged to bring extra cash for betting and a silent auction.
  • Frankfort:  The Capital Region Alumni Club at Buffalo Wild Wings, with raffles throughout the day, as well as prizes for the best dressed and for the most creative Derby hat.
  • Miami:  Damon Stinson, president of the South Florida Cards, has organized an event at the Calder Casino & Race Course at Miami Gardens.
  • Phoenix: Roger Hayes of the Arizona Alumni Club will be hosting fellow fans at Gallagher’s Sports Club.
  • Elsewhere, alumni parties are being hosted by Jill Duvall in St. Louis; George Ellard in Mississippi, Kelly Hanton in Philadelphia, and Paul Hanks in Houston.  UofL Alumni Association Guide here.

A national championship and runner-up in basketball, a BCS Sugar Bowl football trophy, the invitation to the Atlantic Coast Conference, combined with the Derby. Could be a wild day for many UofL fans.