Last night was the celebration, but it’s back to the blood, sweat and tears of two-a-days for the roughly 5000 Division I players around the country today as coaches begin whipping their teams into shape for season openers in less than a month. RTC’s John Stevens dynamited last night’s disappointing ESPNU coverage, ultimately finding that the various tweets and message board updates from fans, coaches, players and media around the country were entirely more interesting than Steve Lavin sitting in an empty locker room waiting for a volleyball game to end. So to wrap up our Midnight Madness coverage, let’s take another look at some of the sights and sounds from last night’s events around the nation.
First, some of the bigger events of last night…
Duke’s Midnight Madness took an odd turn last evening. From The Onion:
DURHAM, NC—Freshman Nate Washburn, 17, was mutilated in front of 12,000 students, players, and coaches at Duke University’s Cameron Indoor Stadium Friday during the school’s traditional “Midnight Madness Sacrifice A Freshman Ceremony.” Prior to their first official practice, six hooded members of the Duke basketball team, lightly chanting the school’s fight song, led a blindfolded Washburn to center court, where he was greeted by head coach Mike Krzyzewski…
Ok, that’s a joke. But the following video wasn’t. They actually showed this at last night’s Countdown to Craziness in Cameron (this is the kind of stuff ESPNU should have been showing!), and the Titanic scene is absolutely going to give us nightmares for the entire rest of Nolan Smith’s career. Seriously. Check it out at the 1:55 minute mark (but the whole thing is worth watching).
And you may have heard that some tomfoolery got into those silly students at Georgetown last night. Well, one specifically. A freshman named Alex Thiele was arrested on suspicion of lifting a loaded handgun from a Park Police officer and then firing the damn thing in a bathroom in one of the dorms on campus. What – it wouldn’t flush? This is just bizarre.
Moving on, here’s Tom Izzo driving into the sold-out (first time ever) Breslin Center at Michigan State in a Formula 1 race car. The tie-in, of course, is that Indianapolis is the site of the 2010 Final Four.
Here’s some of the freshman dance skit at Kansas’ Late Night in the Phog last evening. Gary Parrish was there for this one.
You knew Kentucky’s Big Blue Madness was going to be on the other side of insane last night, and it was. Here’s John Calipari’s opening speech, which is being compared favorably with Obama’s gift of oratory by some (though not all).
Here’s Bob Huggins entering West Virginia’s Midnight Madness last night. WVU is getting a lot of early season hype as a darkhorse F4 candidate.