I’m Not Mad, I’m Just Sad and I’ll Miss My Guys
By: Tyler Dugan
Man. I don’t really know where to begin. I wasn’t going to do this. I wasn’t going to write a blog. I was just gonna try to let it go, but I can’t.
They blew it. They played so well. For 35 minutes they played their best game. Their smoothest. And it slipped away. A couple tough shots went in for Nevada. A couple of missed bunnies happened for the Cats. And before I really knew it was happening, it happened.
You can blame a lot of things. You can blame Mick for not pulling Jarron. I didn’t hate the move at the time. Looking back it would’ve been smart. You can blame the lack of offensive flow in the last 3 minutes. But I don’t blame that on Mick, I really don’t. I just watched a Chris Mack, highly potent offense do the same thing. When another team gets going, it’s hard to find a rhythm. It just seemed like it happened so damn fast that they couldn’t catch their breathe. And that sucks. Is it Mick’s job to try to weather that? Absolutely. But I don’t think this game was 100% on him. They had good looks in the end that didn’t fall. They gave up 2 offensive rebounds (something they never do, and didn’t all game) in the final 2 possessions. They had multiple miscommunications during that run on defense. They just fell apart. The whole damn team. Not one player. Not the coach. The WHOLE group.
It’s tough for me to swallow. I consider myself a die hard. I don’t miss games. I have season tickets. I literally grew a personal connection with these guys. Not that they know me or I have ever spoken to them, but ever since I was a kid, I have loved the players on Cincinnati basketball. I wouldn’t say I’m mad. I’m not mad. I was mad when Jeremy Hill fumbled the ball. When Rolen made the error in game 3. When Cueto sucked in Pittsburgh. I was never sad during those. I was mad, never really sad. This made me sad. It didn’t make me sad because I knew Dalton, Green, and company was coming back. I knew I’d see Votto hit again, Bruce back in right field. I dint know the franchise would take turns like they did, but I knew I would see those guys back on field.
What makes college basketball special, especially at places like UC and X for that matter, is they get guys, who usually aren’t huge recruits, who stay for four years and build an emotional connection with this community. And although it makes it great, damn does it suck when it ends the way it did. My heart hurts for those guys. My heart hurts because I will never get to watch Gary and Kyle, and most likely Jake in a Bearcat uniform again. 3 guys I really fucking enjoyed man. 3 guys that elevated this program to a new place. 3 guys that came in, in a time where everyone wondered what we’d do without SK, they answered. I’m sad I won’t see them next year in that new arena. I’m sad that they won’t be back raising a banner. Because I genuinely believe this team was good enough. I want to personally send my love to Jake, Kyle, and Gary. The worst part of all this is, Cincinnati fans aren’t going to see 11, 24, and 1 on the court anymore. I still can’t get over that. I’m genuinely going to miss those 3. Thanks for the run you 3 put on, truly.
And ya know what, I know X fans that are saying the same shit right now. I watched 4 seconds of that game, and it was the last four. I couldn’t bring myself to watch basketball, especially X, after that loss. From what I read it seemed like the same sorta thing. Some bad turnovers. Missed shots. Shaky calls. And one blown lead. As UC fan it doesn’t make me feel remotely better. And it shouldn’t. I said from the start, as UC fan you can’t judge your season on what happens. That doesn’t change when it’s convenient. Tonight sucked man. It sucked for a city that is gasping for a win. It sucked for two programs that don’t have the glitz and glamor of a UK or Duke, but believe they can one day be on top. That have fans just as passionate as the blue bloods. It sucked for two coaches that built to this moment and watch it burn in their face. It sucked for 2 local college legends for their career to die like this. Tonight was a really rough night for Cincinnati man.
Cincinnati is going to do what we only know how to do. We are going to pick ourselves up tomorrow. We are going to drag ourselves into work, and start talking about who the opening day starter is. That’s what we do. We look for the next opportunity. Head up Cincy, it’ll happen, one day.