Midnight Madness

Whenever I listen to "Someone" sung by Linda Eder and Michael Feinstein I think about Debbie and how she's doing. Walking down University Boulevard this evening alone reminds me of her, especially when I walked into Dunkin Doughnuts and got myself some boston-kreme doughnuts. She introduced me to those.
Yesterday night I had a good time though. We had a volleyball game against the top seed USC (University of Southern California) and our girls had a fourteen game streak just broken by UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles). I decided to go impromptu, just putting on my coat and cycling down to McKale Center. It was free for students. We had a great game, winning the first set easily, and ploughing through the second and third. It was nice to see the school spirit behind these girls.
The main event was not the volleyball game though. It was the night for Midnight Madness, the first basketball practice of the new season. That's right, it's a basketball PRACTICE. It isn't even a game. It begins at midnight, amidst a lot of fanfare and other small activities. They had a $10 000 shot, where if the chosen participant from the audience could get the basketball into the hoop from half-court he'd walk off a much richer man. The whole stadium was filled at 11 o'clock. Even the nosebleed seats were filled. The place trembled with anticipation, much like a watchman waiting for the dawn. There were autograph signing sessions and other festivities.
The slam dunk contest was amazing. We watch the slam dunk competition held in the NBA with awe, but now it was right here at school. What's even more amazing, the standard was no less. RJ (Richard Jefferson) hopped up and put his whole ARM into the hoop. He later jumped over two people standing shoulder to shoulder and dunked the ball.
When the school players were introduced, the stadium was dark, and the spotlight flitted around nervously, waiting for its target. When their names were announced one by one, the crowd went into a frenzy. For that one moment I stood there thinking, "This is the best team in the country". And it was. The polls in sports magazines everywhere rank Arizona as the number one preseason basketball team. They were our pride and joy, yet one must remember too that they are human and limited as such.
This weekend is parent-visiting weekend and a whole lot of parents are on campus. Ryan and his family are watching the Arizona – Washington State football game even this moment. I walk on the street somehow wishing my parents were with me. I miss them.

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