Hello friends. Long time no see. Great to see you guys again. I’m sorry about your home, and that sinkhole. I promise that when I’m Pope I’ll make it up to you. Until then, just keep your family close. That’s all I’m saying. If this time away has taught me anything, it’s that.
Friends, I think we can all agree that in the broad spectrum of sports fans we hate more than anyone, a certain order in this particular region for Kentucky fans would certainly be some order of the following teams: Louisville, Tennessee, Indiana. Sure, we hate the ‘Heels folks and the Cameron Crazies, but as far as foes up in our grill, it’s a general Hoosier/Cards/Vols cocktail. That’s why it’s always like Christmas morning when there’s something great to point out about those we can’t stand. As for Indiana, Tom Crean’s making it easy for us; he’s a veritable Santa Claus with his Twitter gaffs and floor-gum-eating. But I think we can all agree that the best current Hoosier phenomena is their growing propensity for heaping inconsequential praise upon themselves. It’s entirely surreal and awesome. I think you’ll agree. So today, to get this train rolling back out of the station with a post we’ll call Important Moments in Hoosier History. Please enjoy– and I’ll see you here again next week, gang.
Indiana’s Miracle Season
Truly we’ll all remember where we were when the Hoosiers capped the regular 2011-12 season with a win over Purdue to clinch fifth in the Big Ten Conference (suck it, Northwestern!). This monumental season was celebrated with a commemorative poster and special trophy case at Assembly Hall which contains said commemorative poster and Christian Watford’s jersey from the game where the Hoosiers beat, by one point, a team of freshmen who’d only played seven real college games together. Never forget.
The Sweet Sixteen Rings
Because there’s nothing more special in this world than coming within four games of winning a National Championship, Indiana chose to hand out commemorative rings to the team the night before the Hoosiers’ 2012 season opener. It’s something Derek Elston can wear as a badge of pride forever, and whenever he sees JaJuan Johnson they can exchange knowing glances and a nod of brotherhood. Beause you know what they say about Sweet Sixteens: a.) they’re “sweet,” and b.) they consist of sixteen teams apiece. Then everyone moves on because there’s a tournament going on.
A Senior Night to Remember
Perhaps you were one of the few, the lucky, who was around to see the Hoosiers 2012-13 team cut down the nets after a loss at home to number fourteen Ohio State on Senior Night earlier this week. Or perhaps, like a normal fan of average mental acuity, you went home under the completely reasonable understanding that everything was over. But oh, you’d have been wrong if you did that, you stupid fair weather fan. Because these Hoosiers surpass wins and losses. They’re forever. You can’t take that away from them, dammit
The Three-Legged Race Champions
Despite the fact that the sophomore team of Jonny Marlin and Austin Etherington technically won the three-legged racing competition at a pre-season offcampus picnic and barbecue for the team and staff, all participants were deemed “winners” and awarded ribbons during halftime of a January home game against Minnesota to rousing applause by an adoring Assembly Hall.
The Biggest Mad Men Fan Ever
During a January conversation between assistant coaches Tim Buckley and Steve McClain in the halls of the Hoosiers’ Office of Basketball Operations, Buckley recounted an episode of AMC’s Mad Men to a fascinated McClain, who told Buckley he was probably “the biggest Mad Men fan ever.”An extravagant banquet ceremony attended by Buckley’s family, co-workers and Indiana administration was held two weeks later at IU’s Alumni Hall and an honored Buckley was presented with an engraved plaque celebrating this distinction. All appropriate documentation was sent to the American Movie Classics television network for their internal records and an artist’s rendition of Buckey watching Mad Men was printed on a special edition popcorn box sold at Indiana home basketball games.
The Pirate Kings
In February, Cody Zeller and Victor Oladipo signed up for “The Pirates League Experience” at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, where for a fee the pair were made up by Disney-trained makeup artists to look just like pirates. Once outfitted, they spent the next hour and a half hearing stories of swashbuckling sea dogs, received an 8×10 photo taken with a reasonable facsimile of Captain Jack Sparrow and walked in Disney’s Pirates on Paradeâ„¢ extravaganza. Indiana historians will never forget the indelible impact the Zeller and Oladipo made on maritime history during this day and a statue is to be erected in Bloomington this fall.
World’s Greatest Dad
In November, Head Coach Tom Crean purchased a “World’s Greatest Dad” mug at LaGuardia airport during a trip to the Progressive Legends Classic in New York. An Indianapolis film crew is currently in post-production on a documentary extolling Crean’s many victories as a father.