On October 25th, La Salle will have their annual open practice — their version of what used to be known around the nation as Midnight Madness, you could say — for fans, students, and pretty much anyone who would like an early peek at the Explorers. There’s even a reception afterward for La Salle alumni and supporters, according to the announcement of the event. The reception actually sounds cool, since it allows for the chance to interact with the players and coach Dr. John Giannini — and because the one and only Bill Raftery, an alum and a former player at the school, will be speaking at the event and participating in a Q&A.
We’re not posting this merely to promote the La Salle event in Tom Gola Arena to our Philly readers and Big 5 connoisseurs. It sounds like a fine time, indeed — you’ve got an open practice, the chance to hang with the players and coaches, Raftery, free food and drink — what’s not to like, you know? But the reason we dig this so much is because the event is being put on by a group called “The Friends of Bill Raftery Committee.”
If the real “Friends of Bill Raftery” were to show up, they’d need to clear out a couple of small towns to have this thing. Tom Gola Arena is a great place to see a game, but it seats 4,000. Bill Raftery has millions of friends. Because if you’re a fan of college basketball, you’re a friend of Bill Raftery. We wanted to say that we just love that there’s an organization called “The Friends of Bill Raftery.” We want to join it.