Sometimes it is okay to be just happy to be there. That is certainly the case for the Harvard Crimson. Harvard, known worldwide for their academics, struggled for 65 years to make the NCAA Tournament. Well, last season, all their smarty-pants prayers were answered and they made the big dance. It was the first step in a basketball culture change under coach Tommy Amaker.
Now the Crimson are back in the tournament for their second straight appearance. Unfortunately, this year’s first game is against the New Mexico Lobos — a team many think can make it as far as the Final Four. Personally, I would love to sit here and tell you how Harvard will do the unthinkable and pull the biggest upset in the dance, but I’d also love to tell you that your future spouse is as rich as he/she is beautiful — all highly unlikely.
Although, Harvard fans should not treat their one-off in the NCAA Tournament as a time to mourn. It should actually be a time to celebrate a team overcoming so much. The preseason saw Harvard lose two of their best players to an academic scandal in which the institution has never seen before. Still, the Crimson kept grinding it out and somehow found a pair of dancing slippers with their name written on them.
Before we all start writing the inevitable obituary for the Harvard season, just enjoy the moment. You made your first tournament in 65 years and then it only took another season to repeat an appearance. Enjoy your moment in the sun before the Lobos end it — who knows when you will be back.
Rest assured though, Amaker might make going to the dance a regular thing. Smile Harvard fans, smile.
Joe is a Senior Writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JosephNardone