Friday, March 18, 2011

Falling for the Madness

I graduated from a small SUNY school in the middle of the Catskills.  The school I went to was not much of a sports school.  The teams we had were Division III and unless you knew someone playing a particular sport, you didn't go and watch the teams play.  I grew up as the daughter of a wrestling coach, so basketball wasn't really a sport that I paid much attention to at all. 

My husband is a graduate of University of Kansas.  The teams are all Division I, part of the Big 12.  To say that they like basketball would be an understatement, I mean their first men's basketball coach at KU INVENTED the sport!  They consistently have solid teams and have the most winning seasons in the NCAA (92 seasons).   All of this means that there is a lot of history surrounding the team and a lot of tradition. 

So when I met my husband, he introduced me to NCAA basketball.  I was almost immediately hooked.  Not only did I love learning about the players and watching the games, but I was giddy about the traditions surrounding games (the KU chant, waving the wheat, etc.).  I wished that I had been a student at KU to experience these things in person as my husband had. 

Now all these year later, I would say that I am just as much a fan of KU Basketball as most former students.  I watch the games with him, wear all the gear, and get excited when I see former KU grads play against our Portland Trailblazers in the NBA.  

So here we are in March, Kansas is a number one seed and President Obama has them winning it all (hopefully he is right this time).  I am a mix of emotions.  Excited to watch the games, confident in our team, and nervous that sometimes crazy things happen.   I filled out a bracket to keep me occupied in between KU games and the basketball games have been on the T.V. almost every moment that I have been home.   Today KU plays against Boston University and despite the fact that KU should win, I am nervous.  We are wearing our KU gear for good luck and I am hoping that "our boys" are on today.  I will be relieved when the game is over, but won't waste time before beginning to worry about the next game.

Had my husband told me how stressful being a fan of a team can be, I may have been a little less eager to join the Jayhawk fan family, although nothing could convince me not to follow them at this point.  I love them through the good and the bad, no matter how stressful....please let it not be too stressful this tournament!

Do you have a team in the NCAA tournament?  Leave me a comment about your team and tell me your favorite tradition surrounding the game, your team specifically, or the tournament. 


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