My alma mater cracked the top 25 today…in BASKETBALL. You have no idea how absurd a concept this is. Yes, our quaint, little hockey and lacrosse-competent institution (also apparently quite adept at polo) has managed to compose a not-too-shabby basketball squad over the past few years. And after two straight Ivy titles and their corresponding automatic bids to the dance, alumni like me are trying not to allow themselves to contemplate the possibility of a tourney win come this March. Yet, things and people are saying and doing things which make it nearly impossible not to believe.
First, there was last Friday. There, on the pages of USA Today, a real national sportswriter had penned a piece entitled “Cornell basketball making a run toward coaches’ top 25 poll.” Jack Carey, who’d recently discussed Nick Saban, Lane Kiffin, the BCS, Syracuse hoops and other matters of national sports interest, had devoted a column to the Cornell men’s basketball team — and its success. My circuits were already screwed at that point.
Then, the Big Red entered the weekend with two home games against Harvard and Dartmouth. Here was their chance to remind us that the Ivy league slate was still a grind. Dartmouth might not be a challenge, but this was a Harvard team folks were postulating could be the second Ivy team to punch a ticket to the 2010 NCAA tournament. Friday night the Big Red dispatched of the boys from Hanover 71-37. One evening later, with whatever Ivy “spotlight” there could be shining brightly down upon them, Cornell crushed the Crimson by 36.
And, finally, there was today. Out came the new polls and there was the final sign that the world as I know it had been completely flipped on its axis. Reality had been suspended. The apocalypse had arrived. There, standing at #25 nestled just behind the Baylor Bears of the Big 12, were the Big Red of Cornell. I’ll be damned, the kids from Ithaca had managed to nestle themselves into the parking lot while folks like Ole Miss, Mizzou, Xavier and UNLV are still stuck at the gate (for now).
Call it the holy trinity of miracles. Who knows if it will last. Joe Lunardi’s most recent Bracketology pegs Cornell as a #9 seed. The wonders may never cease. Right now, I’ll drink it in. Sh*!, it’s only been 59 years, might as well enjoy it while it lasts. And maybe…just maybe…this ride will include a win come March.
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About the Author: Cecilio's Scribe is the founder of The Legend of Cecilio Guante and a generally pessimistic fan of the Mets, Jets, Knicks and Rangers. A fine NYC-based gentlemen who hones his marketing skills as his primary trade by day. Husband, chef, father of a newborn and after-hours blogger by night. Proud alum of the mighty Big Red of Cornell. University. Hot sauce devotee. Staunch protester of the continued wussifcation of American sports. Sometimes I rhyme slow, sometimes I rhyme quick.