The VCU Rams will host their intercity rivals, the Richmond Spiders, in their final home game of the season tomorrow evening.
VCU’s Senior Night will honor the team’s seniors, guards Troy Daniels and Darius Theus, and forward David Hinton in a highly-anticipated rematch of January 24th, when the Rams let one slip away in the overtime loss at the University of Richmond.
The men on VCU aren’t revengeful–but they are mountains away from complacent. In the grudge match against the Butler Bulldogs last Saturday, the squad who squashed the Rams’ dreams of advancing to the 2011 National Championship, black-and-yellow clobbered their visitors from Indiana by thirty-two points.
There will be no peace at the Siegel Center come 8:02 p.m. After tip-off, the engine on our “Havoc-mobile” will be ignited and burned until the last whistle blows. Tabbing a victory will improve VCU’s chances in this skinny and narrow race to finishing in first place, atop the A-10 Conference. (Behind St. Louis Billikens)
“Senior Night” is just what makes the outing more sweet. But it comes packaged with a deeper meaning than just honoring our team’s seniors. Because I’m graduating in May. Not to take the limelight from the men that I respect, but man.
Since last November I’ve had the utmost privilege of interning for the team. Four days of the week, I filmed their practices and games, captivating all their priceless moments. Before Rafik, a team manager, hired me to fulfill the Videographer position I probably would have failed a basketball-IQ test. What’s a ‘hedge’? What’s a ‘press’? Honestly, my vocabulary list was limited to “pass, shoot, steal, and rebound.”
My skills? Bare minimum. I might dominate a middle school game. This amazing experience has taught me much more than what a ball screen accomplishes, the purposeful uses of hedging and stunting, and the incredible power of a perfectly executed full-court press.
Watching Coach Smart, Coach Rhoades, Coach Ballard and Coach Wade discipline our student-athletes has in actuality taught me about character and other life values just from sitting alone in a chair above the court for hours and logging clips. I learned what it takes to building a winning mentality and practicing what you preach.
Thank you, VCU basketball team, for being my daily source of joy. Many students and fans would instantly trade places to be in my shoes; thank you for entrusting me with your video-recording duties. I’ve never taken a day of filming a practice or a home-game for granted and yes, it has been my genuine pleasure to work for some of the greatest influences in the microcosm of intercollegiate basketball.
And as for the graduate assistants and student managers, thank you all for your sincerity and acceptance. I hope to someday reconnect with you gentlemen in the future.