That Was Amazing: Yes, I was at the legendary Louisville game. Yes, it was once the greatest sporting event I have ever attended. Sorry, but no more. I am a college basketball fan first and I will wear that on my sleeve. This is the greatest sporting event I have ever attended. It was a battle with both teams throwing haymakers. And to have it come down to a two for one, shot for shot battle, with a nearly halfcourt buzzer beater to end it over the number one team in the country? That was just amazing. I was in tears. The court storming. The elation. The joy. Just... that has made being a 20 year season ticket holder worth every penny.
Ron Fire: Ron Harper, Jr. What else can you say. The man just made one of the most iconic shots in Rutgers history. This shot will show up in Rutgers highlights for eternity. In 38 minutes, he scored 30 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. It is a performance for the ages. The man took the Scarlet Knights on his back and said, “Let’s go make history.” That halfcourt shot was incredible. He had the clock in his head. Four dribbles and put up the shot. The light went on. The ball went through the basket. When his time is up here, he will be a legend.
Caleb McConnell, Cliff Omoruyi and Paul Mulcahy: All three players filled important roles tonight. Caleb McConnell played a lot of defense on Jaden Ivey, helping to force him into a travel after an awful turnover with 30 seconds left. He scored 12 points, had five assists and 5 rebounds. He filled his role perfectly. Paul Mulcahy was a conductor tonight. He didn’t score, but played tenacious defense and dished out 8 assists as the offense as run very well tonight. Cliff Omoruyi was a key too, getting a huge ovation as he returned to the court recovering from a tenacious and egregious elbow by Zach Edey that wasn’t called his way. Omoruyi had 11 points, and while he didn’t have his best defensive game against some very good players, he made Trevion Williams and Zach Edey work for their points.
Steve Pikiell: I will take no criticism of him tonight, sir. He has done something here that no one at Rutgers men’s basketball has ever done. He took down number one. And he did it with his captain sidelined and players on the team struggling with the flu. He played offense defense with Jalen Miller and Paul Mulcahy, confusing the Purdue offense and holding them well below their 90 points per game average. He got valuable minutes out of Oskar Palmquist. He is developing Mawot Mag into a very good player. Steve Pikiell can coach. He proved it again tonight.
Bonus Thought: And now, the rivalry. Seton Hall beat the number 7 team in the country tonight by taking down Texas. I mean, it’s not as impressive as beating number 1, but it’s okay. And now the Scarlet Knights will travel up the turnpike for a massive, massive game. College basketball is a fun sport. Let’s go!