Thursday, April 1, 2010
DAYTON FLYERS, NIT CHAMPS!
My alma mater has just won the National Invitation Tournament (NIT). That may not be a big thing to my two or three readers, but it's big in Dayton. We beat a lot of good teams to get to this point, but let's be real here, we should have been an NCAA team, but we failed to close the deal. We didn't deserve to be in the NCAA and the NIT was what we earned.
We could have put our heads down, but instead we embraced it and said "We blew it, but let's win this thing." And win it they did. Let's talk about what they did.
The opening game was a home game and we beat Illinois State handily at home. Then we went on the road to Cincinnati (Big East) and pounded them. We next went on the road to Illinois (Big Ten) and beat them. Two (Bowl Championship Series) BCS teams and two defeats. BCS is the highest level of the NCAA. Go Flyers!
Next came the Final Four and we played Mississippi in the semifinals. Here's a (Southeastern Conference) SEC school, really? that's not grammatically correct, but let's move on. The little old Flyers beat them. That sets up the other semifinal. Rhode Island, an Atlantic 10 team, is scheduled to play North Carolina. Watching the game I told myself that justice would be that two A-10 teams would play each other in the finals. But alas, the Rhodies spit it up at the end and lost. That set up the David and Goliath final. The Dayton Flyers (A10) versus North Carolina, the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) the recognized "God" conference.
WE BEAT THEM BY 11! We led them by 13 at the half. We stumbled a little and they closed it to two points, but we fought back and won. NIT CHAMPS!!
Those of us who are University of Dayton alums, both my children included, are thrilled that we are now in the national spotlight. We lose some seniors but, our recruits are top notch so we'll be back next year.
Sorry for this post, but I'm thrilled by the NIT championship. GO FLYERS!!!