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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We're going going back back to finals finals

(The title is a not-necessarily-intentional, but appropriate, nod to the Notorious B.I.G., deceased 12 years ago yesterday)

I'm back from a long weekend in the monster mid-Atlantic, and my alma mater's been acting monstrous in their own right. Spring Break is in session at UNCG, giving Megan a week free of classes and me a week without students, so we took a few days to head north for my family in Delaware, her family in Maryland, and some sightseeing in DC. At the time, UMBC men's hoops was also making the most of their travel north, defeating my parents' alma mater and #3 seed Boston University and showing tournament host Albany who the REAL Big Dawgs are to make it back to championship weekend, where we'll face Tony Kornheiser's Binghamton Bearcats at their house.

Now I'm not counting my chickens before they hatch. Binghamton's too good for that. We've split this season's series, each of us winning at home, so going back to the BU Zoo could prove formidable. Still, I can't help but daydream about the possibilities of another conference championship and NCAA tournament berth. For starters, our .500 record and losing records both in conference and in the regular season would likely relegate us to the play-in opening round game in Dayton going in as a 16a or 16b seed would actually give us the chance to win a tournament game (asterisk be damned). It is then possible (at least in my mind, and I haven't seen any brackets with early round/regional pairings to refute this) that the Dawgs could be headed to first round action right here in Greensboro! If such happens, saying I will be there is an understatement. I'll do whatever I can within my power (and I do know people at the Coliseum) to put together some kind of something for the Retriever faithful.

Speaking of Retriever faithful, it should be well documented that retriever fever is an affliction I live with year round. That said, part of the plans for this trip to the mid-Atlantic was to roll through the ol' alma mater, with the intent of walking the grounds and perhaps snatching up some of the UMBC merchandise I've been eyeballing so hard online. There was a polo that I've had my eye on for some time, but I was slightly less in love with seeing it in person. I still would have likely picked it up, but they didn't have my size in stock. I may still have to order it online at some point. I re-purchased a "UMBC Football - Undefeated" shirt; I had bought one back during Homecoming '06 and for some reason paid no attention to the size, so it quickly became the property of Megan.

I was also hoping ot acquire a new UMBC car flag, as mine met an untimely death, but they did me one better: A full-sized UMBC flag!! This is something I've been dreaming about since I've even thought of owning a house; the plan was to fly a USF flag during the back half of the year/front half of the school year, say July through December, to encompass college football season and the non-conference half of basketball season. January through June, UMBC would go up, representing through the remainder of basketball season and lacrosse season. I've got the house, I've got the flagpole, and I've got the USF flag; the UMBC flag was the one piece of the puzzle remaining. I had even done so much as e-mail our Associate AD for marketing to see if one may be available. Now that I've got it, I'l take a page from the book of our brethren down in College Park and raise high the black and gold!
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