The entire world is lamenting the lack of great underdogs in the tournament this year. (Well, not the entire world. Afghanistan probably has bigger concerns.)Â Some people tried to squeeze Arizona into the mold, turning an underachieving power into a plucky upstart. It didn’t work.
But,Â the problem may not be about looking towards the wrong teams for inspiration. It may be about looking towards the wrong tournament.
Baylor is playing in tonight’s NIT final four at Madison Square Garden. When’s the last time you thought about the Baylor men’s basketball team? Probably 2003. And not because they made some great run through the Big 12. It was because one of their players was brutally murdered and left in a ditch near Waco, and another member of the team was identified as the killer. He’s now in a mental institution.
Combine that with drug and alcohol accusations, recruiting violations, and a general culture of misbehavior under former coach Dave Bliss, and the fact that the Bears have rebuilt their program this much in just over five years is pretty remarkable.
So, if you’re looking for a story to wrap your arms around, don’t look towards Detroit this weekend. Check out the World’s Most Famous Arena tonight, and the most inspiring Cinderalla story of the year.