Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hail to the Victors! Michigan Beats UCLA in Basketball; Forget Football

Hail to the Victors! Michigan Beats UCLA in Basketball; Forget Football

The lowly Michigan Wolverines, 10-22 last year, just beat the Mighty Bruins of UCLA 55-52 in the 2K Classic semi-finals at Madison Square Garden. UCLA, the greatest team in college basketball history, the Number 4 ranked team in the country, the best recruiting class in America, coached by an almost great coach (you’re not great until you win the NCAA), Ben Howland, the emphasis on defense, just fell to a team it blew out by 40 points at Pauley Pavilion two years ago.

Tonight was certainly not a pretty game, but boy was it beautiful. Indeed, it reflected the rough defensive basketball of the east coast, where both Beilein and Howland have their roots. UCLA could not beat a 1-3-1 zone.

I believe in Michigan. I love New York. David beat Goliath. There will be a bright new tomorrow. Don’t wait until next year. Maybe, just maybe, Michigan stands a chance in Columbus on Saturday.

We can always dream. If Appalachian State can beat Michigan, if Toledo can beat Michigan, if everyone can beat Michigan this fall, then anything is possible.

Dream on!

After a great career at West Virginia, John Beilein was lured to Ann Arbor two years ago to resuscitate the moribund basketball program. The result was an extremely disappointing season; it stank.

This year’s team is now 3-0, and beat UCLA. Did I say Michigan beat UCLA? What were the odds? Michigan’s first win over a top five team in 11 years! – that’s how low the Wolverines had slumped. Let me not gloat though because I have a couple dozen UCLA alums in my classes. Why couldn’t it have been USC in football?

Last year’s Wolverines did not beat one top ranked team; the record was 0-10 against the best, and deservedly so, whereas UCLA lost in the Final Four to Memphis, finishing the season 35-4.

Rick Rodriquez, this year’s football coach, came from West Virginia, and has set a Michigan season record for futility; it sucks. Sounds familiar! Now we know; West Virginia transplants need a year to acclimate.

Wait till next year in Ann Arbor Brutus Buckeye! If you lose to Michigan on Saturday, Jim Tressel should be fired. And all of America, outside Ohio, will salute.

Dream on!

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