Tomorrow night the Rutgers men's basketball team (6-23; 0-16) hosts the #2 ranked Michigan State Spartans (24-5; 11-5). Rutgers is coming off a 39 point road loss to Northwestern, while Michigan State comes in riding a 4 game winning streak that includes a 19 point victory over Big Ten leader Indiana and a 31 point win over Penn State on Sunday. Sure, freshman point guard Corey Sanders returns and Ibrahima Diallo is back, giving Rutgers nine scholarship players for this game. However, Rutgers beating Michigan State tomorrow is less likely than Obama getting a 3rd term, Elvis playing at HighPoint Solutions Stadium, and leap day happening every year.
This Rutgers team, as of now, is pretty much without debate, the worst power conference basketball team of all-time. Beating #2 Michigan State would be a far greater upset than a 16 seeded team knocking off the #1 seed in the first round of the NCAA tournament, something that has never happened in history. In fact, according to KenPom, Michigan State is the #2 team in the country, while Rutgers is ranked 306th. So it's really like a matchup of a #1 seed versus a #77 seed, if such a ridiculous thing actually existed. Rutgers lost by 34 points to Sparty a month ago on the road, but this game could be even worse. If Rutgers won, you could argue it's the biggest upset in college basketball history.
I know most people will not subject themselves to the misery of watching this basketball game. But if you wanted to, here are some things you could that would be more fun than watching/attending the game: do your taxes; learn to knit; go to the dentist; replace that sump pump; pick back up that organic chemistry or advanced algebra book from school for a good time; go on a cleanse diet; bang your head against the wall; all more productive than emotionally investing yourself in Rutgers basketball.
Of course, if you do plan to watch tomorrow, here are some ways to cope during the game. Whatever your preference is, you can use this coping mechanism at when frustrating moments that will be repeatable during the game. Whether it's drinking, working out, praying, or to eat healthy, to name a few, you can be productive while watching your favorite team get demolished on national television.
If drinking is your thing, PLEASE DRINK RESPONSIBLY, preferably at home and ONLY with beer or wine. If you like to workout, wait until tip-off and incorporate your exercise into burning off frustration ,as well as pounds. If you are the religious type, this game will be a tremendous opportunity to pray and pray often. If you are on a diet or just health conscious, the opportunity to eat a lot of veggies is here for this game.
Here is how it works: For every instance something bad or predictable happens during the game that is mentioned below, you can drink a sip of beer/wine, do 5-10 pushups/crunches/jumping jacks, pray in your own way, or eat a piece of something green.
- Every timeout, have a few sips of water, regardless of your chosen activity
- Eat at halftime, regardless of your chosen activity
- Stay off of Twitter, it will be brutal....BRUTAL
- Keep any sharp objects out of reach or out of visibility
Likely scenarios to watch for & then perform your coping action of choice:
- Every badly contested jump shot Rutgers takes
- Every time Rutgers drives into the paint but fails to get a shot off and loses possession
- Every wide open three MSU takes (WARNING: We may need to adjust to every other)
- Every missed free throw by Rutgers
- Every mystified look Eddie Jordan gives
- Every uncomfortable & embarrassed face/crossed elbows by Tom Izzo
- Every time the announcers sympathize with Eddie Jordan/tell fans he needs more time
- Every time the announcers talk about the 31 game losing streak
- Every time the Scarlet Knight mascot cries
Heck, we could make this a fundraiser for RFund, for every time one of the above occurs, donate $1 for each. Think of how much money could be raised! Regardless, you finish the game with one of the following: work night/school night buzz, a great workout, a lot of praying, and a lot of healthy, natural food in your system. This game is going to be awful, as Michigan State leads the conference in three-point shooting at 43.3% and field goal percentage defense. Considering Rutgers can't/won't defend the three and isn't a good shooting team, it's fair to expect a rout of epic proportions.
I mean we are literally going into battle against the Spartans for crying out loud. Will it top the 50 point beating at the hands of Purdue? Probably not, because Tom Izzo will likely call off the dogs early. But it could be, if Rutgers plays really sloppy and gives up like they did against Purdue. We can't rule anything out, so let's stick together and get through this game and the rest of the season. And then we fall into full on "In Hobbs We Trust" mode. Until then...
*Editor's Note: Do not drink liquor during this game in combination with the coping techniques mentioned, there will be way too many instances in the game that could compromise your safety. Don't be stupid! The whole point is to survive this game!