It is generally my policy to stay away from message boards the day after a difficult loss such as the one against UNC. We all know that the vast majority of people can become very irrational when in the heat of passion and the law recognizes this by creating a mitigating factor in sentencing known as the “heat of passion” factor. Thus any time people are worked up, one cannot assume they will be anything resembling rational.
However Kentucky fans at times find a way to take this theory to a heightened extreme following losses that get their blood boiling. Now let me be clear, I found the game on Saturday fairly difficult to watch. Kentucky played one of its worst games of the last couple of years and let an inexperienced UNC team come onto their home court and control the play for virtually the entire game. However if one were to look at the reactions on the message boards, she would have found that virtually everything was wrong. Some message headings included:
“We have no offense”
“We cant play any defense!”
“Worst Rebounding team ever?”
“The Program is disintegrating before our eyes!”
“Tubby cant recruit good players”
“Has Tubby ever developed one player at UK?”
Now for a team that has gone into the NCAA tournament as the 1 overall seed two of the last three years and a number 2 seed the next to have all these problems is fairly amazing. I mean to hear some fans tell it, this team is just one Carlos Toomer away from becoming Alice Lloyd. Look, I understand the frustration when you watch a game where the Cats play bad. However, the overwhelming negativity just strikes me as bizarre. I mean this is basketball and these are college kids. I dont know the last time you were in a room with a college kid, but their general priorities are ranked in this order:
1. Where can I meet women?
2. Where can I get cheap food?
3. Is there a place where I can get women and cheap food?
To make your happiness or sadness dependant on people with this priority list strikes me as a bit self-defeating. I get nervous before games, pace the floor and wonder what will happen if we lose. But if I am about to take the game too seriously I think of the night at Waffle House in 1998 when I saw Nazr Mohammad the night the brackets were announced. It was about 3 am and I had already gone over the brackets ten times to figure out the best path to UK’s victory. Seeing Nazr, I went up to him and asked him what he thought of the draw. His answer: “I havent seen the brackets….I was too busy sleeping. Do we play Duke?” Just remember that answer the next time you are about to obsess over the next game…..it may be a bit unhealthy.