Saturday, March 24, 2007

A Day of Mourning

For the Texas A&M Men's Basketball Team. They had a wonderful year, and were vanquished by tired legs, mediocre free throw shooting, and lackluster officiating in the NCAA's Sweet Sixteen (and maybe also by Memphis). We now must say goodbye to the best and most beloved A&M basketball player ever, Acie Law IV. (And please God, don't make us say goodbye to Billy Gillispie too!) But I must also thank them for giving all of us Aggies an exciting and memorable basketball season.

I haven't been back to College Station since graduation in spring 2001 (Fightin' Texas Aggie Class of 2001, WHOOP!), and sports are the only way I can indulge my Aggie spirit now. With the dismal - considering the 1998 Big 12 Champion Aggie Football team, yes, it's dismal - performance of our football team in the late Slocum years and the Franchione years (I would only wish us to lose to tu (Texas) so Fran could be fired) basketball under Gillispie has provided a way for me to stay in touch with my alma mater from hundreds of miles away (besides opening up my checkbook), and it's wonderful to be able to see old haunts on ESPN or ABC. And to hear the Aggie War Hymn, and see people filling the stands in Reed arena and sawin' varsities horns off, oh, it brings a tear to my eye.

From the vantage point of my current university, whose unofficial motto is "where fun comes to die," I miss the camaraderie, the traditions, and the knowledge that there's more to life than just academic learning and medieval dress-up day. I miss the feeling of commitment to each other and to shared values, the commitment that also leads some of my classmates to fight in Iraq now. I know alumni complain about the death of Old Army and the lack of spirit in New Army, but at least we are all Aggies, and this season our Men's Basketball Team made other people in the country want to be Aggies too. I am honored that these young men represented Texas A&M to the sports nation.

2006-2007 Texas A&M Men's Basketball Team, Whoop!

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