Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

NCAA Finals Hearken Back to Hoyas of Old

While Georgetown fans have had their gazes fixed in New York on the other Final Four, the rest of the world has been focusing on this weekend’s games in New Orleans to determine the National Champion.

Call it a coincidence, but I think it’s pretty interesting that while Georgetown has made its postseason run to salvage its season, the Final Four is back at the Superdome, where the Hoyas came within one point of winning their first national championship in 1982.

That Georgetown team featured a very special player with the number 33 on his back. This one features another special player, with the number 34 on his back. Patrick Ewing (CAS ’85) led his team to three Final Fours, including a national championship, before becoming one of the NBA’s 50 greatest players. Mike Sweetney suffered through a devastatingly disappointing season that at one point was on track to be the worst since before John Thompson revolutionized the program in the late ’70s. How he ends his career at Georgetown remains to be seen. Hoyas fans hope desperately that it did not come last night in New York.

If Sweetney keeps his promise to his parents and returns for his senior year, he and the Hoyas might be able to turn this late-season run into a catalyst for another late-season run next year, maybe to the real Final Four. Without Sweetney, Georgetown would be a team without an anchor, a team that would have immediately-lowered expectations.

The same thing goes for Georgetown’s arch-rival Syracuse, who will have next-season’s fate decided long before the first practice in October when freshman phenom Carmelo Anthony decides whether to return for a second year. With Anthony as their leader, the Orangemen have surged to the real Final Four where they are set to face off against the only one-seed remaining in the tournament, Texas.

I’ll probably have to wear a bag on my head when I walk around campus for saying this, but I like Syracuse’s chances to make it to the championship game, and I wouldn’t put it past them to win the whole thing.

Anthony is the real deal. He’s a tall slasher who can score from both inside and outside, and he plays excellent defense. He also has a tremendous supporting cast that includes two other first-year players, Billy Edelin and Gerry McNamara.

McNamara is a fascinating player, the kind of guy our dads have always told us about, a serious throwback. He can shoot the lights out and has considerable poise for a first-year player. He’s also what Norman Dale would call “fundamentals and defense” – he makes all his free throws and is quick on defense. Edelin and Hakim “Hack” Warrick are big-time talents.

And then there’s the coach. What do you say about Jim Boeheim if you’re a Georgetown student? Well, you sure don’t have to like him, but you do have to respect him. He just might get his first national championship on Monday night if Syracuse plays as well this weekend as they did against Oklahoma, when they made a very good team look just silly. Georgetown, Villanova and Connecticut might have to make room for a new member of the Big East teams with national championships on their resumes.

Ugh. I feel so filthy. I just picked Syracuse to win the national championship.

But now they’re doomed. You see, by picking them, I have virtually assured that they will not come within a country mile of the national championship trophy. It’s all part of my master plan to ruin the Orangemen, and I have this power because this year I have been the NCAA Tournament’s Angel of Death. If your name appeared on my bracket, you should have started saying your prayers immediately, and booking an early flight home.

Kentucky, Maryland, Duke, Arizona. That’s who I had in the Final Four. Lots of people are proud that they picked four of the actual four teams. I went four-for-four, too, you see; I ruined all four teams’ chances.

Marquette’s in the Final Four. Not on my bracket. In my world, they lost on the first day to Holy Cross. This is why they will most likely win the national championship.

Oops. I just jinxed another one. I better shut my trap before I eliminate all four remaining teams.

But Texas sure does look good doesn’t it, with T.J. Ford at the helm and all? Shoot. I did it again.

I guess that means Kan – ow.

Kansas Head Coach Roy Williams just kicked me in the shin. Smart move, Roy. Good luck in North Carolina.

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