A buddy of mine who works in the Duke University Athletics Department got to me recently. He doesn’t like the cuts made in this space or any other space for that matter about the Blue Devils and especially about basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski. He thinks the words here are being disrespectful to a fine academic institution, a bunch of hard working student-athletes and a coach who has a record that’s unbelievable.
It took a while, but my friend got to me. It took a lot of reflection on my own life before realizing a change had to be made, that Duke, its programs, especially athletics with a storied history that’s really terrific, and Coach K should be recognized for excellent and leadership, not to mention setting a good example for all academic institutions and athletics programs worldwide. There remain a few questions, but the change is on.
For instance, with Mike and his foul language which is publically displayed at nearly every game he coaches, his foul language that he directs at his players, his disdain for and ignoring of the media except when he has to talk to a halftime reporter during the NCAA tournament, there’s now a deeper understanding on my part. It’s easy to say he’s a jerk and all that, but Mike is just being Mike, as we all are at some time in our life. Not being like Mike, but being yourself, treating people with respect and dignity instead of berating them with off color language, especially the kind that Mike dishes out. But that’s behind me now. Mike is ok. He has a purpose to his use of the F-word.
And, as far as cheering against the Blue Devils in the Final Four, well, after seeing that supporting their opposition in the first four games did no good, it’s time to get on the Duke bandwagon and hope and pray for Duke’s success Saturday and Monday. Besides, how can you like a jovial, laid-back Tom Izzo when you can better appreciate Mike Krzyzewski. And, if Duke wins Saturday and meets an undefeated Kentucky in the title game Monday, who in their right mind would want that cheating, lying John Calipari with a team of youngsters who put the fun back into watching college basketball to win and complete a perfect season, the first since Bob Knight’s Indiana Hoosiers did it in 1976. Besides, watching a cool and calm Calipari is not as entertaining watching Krzyzewski rant, rave and turn red-faced as he goes after the officials. Coach K and his style are good examples for all of college basketball. Bless Coach K for putting the seriousness in winning college basketball titles. It’s important to the survival of the human-race.
Just as Christian Laettner hit a last second shot against Kentucky in 1992 to win the East Regional, catapulting Duke the NCAA Final Four and the title, hopefully someone on Duke this year will do the same against Kentucky so we can be entertained in the CBS production of “One Shining Moment” after the game and for another 23 years with video of the shot as a bookend to Laettner’s shot. That’s something to look forward to.
One last thing today, if you think this is a serious post, you’re an idiot. Today is April Fool’s Day (just look at the posting date). There is no way in hell there’s been a change to my thinking. Nothing would suit me better than for Duke to lose to Michigan State Saturday, and if that doesn’t happen, then to lose to Kentucky or to Wisconsin, whichever team makes it to Monday’s title game. As far as Krzyzewski is concerned, more people should ignore him which he hates. That’s the best punishment for his foul mouth. Go Spartans; go Badgers; go Wildcats!
Dictionary.com word of the day
malarkey (noun) [muh-lahr-kee]: speech or writing designed to obscure, mislead, or impress