Saturday, December 6, 2008

A Year and Five Days Ago

By Lauren Biggers
Men's Basketball vs. NC State

The last time the Davidson Wildcats played at Time Warner Cable Arena it wasn’t called Time Warner Cable Arena. The opponents weren’t simultaneously members of the all-mighty ACC and underdogs. There was no such thing as a White Lobster, and it’s quite possible that The King had never even heard of his newest BFF.

The AP story started like this:

“Gerald Henderson scored 21 points and Greg Paulus had two key baskets and a steal in the final 2 minutes as No. 7 Duke remained unbeaten by holding off pesky Davidson 79-73 on Saturday.”

A year and five days later:

“Stephen Curry had just drilled a 30-foot fadeaway despite an awkward release that resembled a set shot - and it was too much for his buddy LeBron James to take.”

Well, one thing’s for sure, this was nothing like the last time the Wildcats went Uptown.

This time, Davidson brought a national ranking. Defended it. The battle on the boards? Won it. A late lead. Held it.

These Wildcats have, in fact, come leaps and bounds in a year, and in the light of the RBC Center, Sweet Caroline and that really cool police escort, the journey sometimes gets taken for granted.

After the game, I took my dad and my uncle, both NC State alums, to the
post-game press conference.

“I’m not very happy right now,” my uncle says, and I am reminded that not everyone in the world pulls for Davidson. Strange.

Behind the podium, sits a subdued trio of Wildcats. It’s a scene that looks and feels strangely similar to a season ago, but I’m struck by the profound difference.

A season ago, A Coach and Two Wildcats sat on the stage mutedly, sadly answering questions about running with the big boys.

A year and five days later, A Coach and Two Wildcats sat on the stage mutedly, thankfully answering questions about Lebron James.

Weird.

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