Opinion Personal

March Madness: I Am Proud to be a Razorback

In 2019, when I first met and blogged about Razorback basketball Coach Eric Musselman, I didn’t know that Covid 19 was looming ahead or that the Razorbacks would make it to the Sweet Sixteen in 2021’s Playoff.

March Madness is often called the “Big Dance” and never has that felt truer. With this past year full of too much TV watching, Netflix binging, and electronic visiting, having the tournament to look forward to and watch was a lot like planning for prom night. There was what to wear (my lucky shirt), what to eat (game food), and bracket favorites.

Mature Determination

Though our Razorback season ended last Monday night in a battle against Baylor, I could not be any prouder of our players and staff. It is hard to imagine what it must be like to be an 18-year-old playing a game that is nationally televised and analyzed by so many people.

Some things I really liked about this Razorback Basketball team was their ability to keep their emotions in check, with maybe the exception of Jalen Tate (LOL). No pouting or hang-dog look in their faces, even when the ref’s call was questionable, or they lagged behind by 10 points. This “so what, what now” determination may be why they were often successful, 10 times in a row, at coming from behind. Until the very last lay-up on the very last game, these kids, as I call them, played focused, hard, and smart. Their fouls were often less than their opponents, which is unusual for any Razorback team.

Great Things Ahead

Whomever we were playing, the announcers seemed to always speak admiringly and respectfully of our young basketball program. And young it is. With the exception of Moses Moody, the SEC player of the year, who will be drafted into the pros this year, many of the players are returning to play again and this time with tournament experience.

As I said of Coach Musselman in my early blog, when referring to his short stature, “Big things often come in small packages.” Indeed, they do.