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Saturday, November 22, 2008

College Football Season (in the worldwide sense)

It's tournament time for college football (ok, soccer to us Americans) and oddly enough, I care.

Part of it may be that my USF football (in the American sense) Bulls are currently working below potential. Add to that the fact that the soccer Bulls are Big East champs and UNCG cinderellaed through the SoCon tourney to make the NCAAs, most recently beating Duke in their first round matchup, and there's actually something to be excited about this soccer season.

This leads to the intersection of two truths: The first is that I will root for my schools regardless of sport, activity, or endeavor. The second is that I ain't so crazy about soccer. That said my cable sports package (God bless it) allowed me to see USF vs. St. Johns in the Big East championship game last weekend, and it was a truly exciting game. It's possible the excitement came from the fact that my team was competing for its first Big East title in a men's sport, but I actually believe it's because the Bulls put an exciting brand of soccer on the field.

Here on campus at UNCG, there's not too much buzz (perhaps because all the games will be played on the road) but at least some awareness that our men are playing in the tournament.

It's not beyond my recognition that should the Bulls win their first tournament game (vs. the UMass/Harvard winner) and the Spartans get past Loyola, my alma mater and my employer are on a collision course and will meet in Tampa. What's further, should last year's champion Wake Forest continue their winning ways, then either USF or UNCG could be playing over in Winston-Salem at Wake in an Elite 8 matchup, a trip I will almost certainly make.

In other college news, it's hoops season, which means most folks here in NC are in their element. UMBC's off to a 2-1 start, losing across town at Morgan and defeating Stevenson (formerly Villa Julie) and our old NEC foe Quinnipiac. USF's started 1-1 on the regular season, beating SMU and losing narrowly to UVA. And UNCG's at 1-1, dropping the opener to Charlotte but winning the home opener vs. Webber International. Here at UNCG, there's huge focus on making a big deal out of our game in the Coliseum in February vs. 2008 regional finalist Davidson.

Finally, I'm in the office killing some time (I have an event tonight) and ESPN360 is allowing me to watch the Florida Classic. There's been some sloppy play here in the first half, but I guarantee you there will be nothing of the sort come halftime.
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