I had a whirlwind trip to Detroit and back. I left yesterday at 4:00 am. Worked all day in Detroit, went to the game and then drove home at 4:00 am, so I am a little tired.
A few thoughts:
While Little Caesars is a fine arena, it is just way too big for the Horizon tourney. I am not thrilled that they will be using IUPUI's home court, but a smaller arena will help the atmosphere. For the Horizon Tourney, Little Caesars doesn't open up many concession stands or ticket windows. I understand why, but when the arena has a skeleton operation, it impacts the atmosphere.
We had a good turnout of fans other than students. Really wish more students would get behind the team. I know students are on spring break, but lack of support by students is an ongoing issue.
NKU got significant contributions from kids you wouldn't expect. Robinson has had some good games, but his role has been greatly reduced as season continued. Nice to see him have a huge game. Silas only played four minutes, but they were big!!! He played solid D on Love and wasn't afraid to be assertive offensively. Nice to see that for both those kids.
Defense on Wampler was soooooo much better last night than it was in Dayton a few weeks ago. He is really a good player. Wish we had him.
We need to hope that Loudon Love's post season nutritional habits from last season continue this season. Dude is eating himself out of PT. He just can't keep up with pace of play and run court if game is played fast. He isn't a bad player, but he is more really big than good.
Chris Vogt from his first exhibition his freshman year to right now is the most improved player I have ever seen. He only has 2 issues now - playing without fouling and foul shooting.
The under 4 timeout was one of the best moments of the night. I think NKU was up by 18 (or around that amount). Wright State had gone in to desperation mode. The arena had turned celebratory. At that point, I wanted there to be a million timeouts and the rest of the game to last forever.
The postgame was also very fun. They let all the fans gather around the team. NKU is a small enough community that the celebration felt like having fun with family. Snapped a million pictures. The officials (both arena and league) never rushed us and let the celebration continue for a long time.
Overall just an incredibly fun night.
Last thought, it wasn't all that long ago when NKU, their athletics program, and their administration took lots of shots on this board. I defended NKU then and the basketball program is absolutely humming. I supported firing Bezold then and it was the right move. I hated to see both Mason and Carson leave; however, it is hard for me to imagine what either of their roles would have been and whatever their roles would have been, it would have satisfied neither of them.