I know. That feeling of joy and pain in which the Wisconsin Badgers Hoop Squad must feel right now. All year long they have been a fun team to watch from the beginning to the end. We all know by now, yes Duke won the National Championship. Bucky Lost. (Only because some blown calls by the refs!) But all in all, the UW-Badgers Hoop Squad had a helluva season in which many will remember. This team ALMOST came close in winning the National Championship in which the Ball Club already has…….from 1941. The one championship in which it was won during the Second World War. But I feel as I write this, (knowing some Duke Fans might read it) this is really for them and also those who are about to leave the squad for the pros. For that, I present this blog letter.
Dear UW Badgers Basketball Team of 2014-15:
It’s me Stephen, a Badger fan man, a UW-System Alum, A UW-Stout Alum, and a black blogger from Milwaukee. Yes, Bucky got me hooked since 1993!
Just want to come by to say this: THANK YOU!!!!
You guys were very impressive this year. Winning titles, player of the year, winning the B1G Tournament Championship, winning the sole-possessive Big 10 Title, Coach of the year and many others. Even OWNING the west in the regionals en route to the Final Four. In my view, you are starting to earning your place in the College Basketball game. And even if you may not see it now, you are building a new mantra for the UW-Madison Sports program.
You all are making your mark; that even though you didn’t get the hardware you really wanted, but still I believe that NO TEAM in the NCAA should not overlook a Badger! Like many monday night (in between watching Monday Night Raw) it was my first time well as many others have seen you in the Championship Game for the first time in over Seven Decades. That was a start of things to come. No question that many of you are still heavy about not getting the National Strap. And yes, I have to give the Devils their due. Yes, Duke won. Even though that the refs had miscue calls, but they won. Not taking away from the talent of Tyus Jones, and Grayson Allen. Or many others. Even Coach K, who’s been in the business for over 30 years. Again not taking away from them. They have been coached by the best. HOWEVER, what they don’t have is that you all have been given new hearts to build in order to continue on this new era in the program.
For the Seniors who are about to move on: Thanks to the Tank, Traevon Jackson, Josh Gasser, and Duje Dukan for the four years. Even though that the pros might be calling, but your talent here in Wisconsin will be forever remembered. Who knows, maybe one of you or all four of you will be winning those NBA Titles. I thought about Michael Finley alot in which he was a scoring player for his run as a Badger. And even though he didn’t win a national title, he won an NBA Title in his career with the San Antonio Spurs in 2007. So yes, it does get somewhat better after the College Hoops.
JUST IN: Sam Dekker had announced that he will not seek another run in the UW-Badgers Team for 2015-16. Instead, he’ll move on to the NBA Draft. Still, he made a impact on the team as well. I wish him well.
As for the rest of the team who have to carry on the struggle to greatness, the road is still open. And even though that the team may have to make adjustments or to find the new freshman classmates to help along from High Schools in America, it’s time to get cracking! For this, if those you seek out of high school are any good with speed and defense, then do what you have to do. In other words: like I mentioned to the Football Crew, CHANGE THE CULTURE!
Finally, as I close, in the time in which the UW-Schools would be deducted 300 Million Dollars of Scott Walker’s Idea which is “Bad for Business”, and the spirit of others schools have to be lifted, your spirit in my opinion, have somewhat captured other UW-Schools in the state in sense of pride. No matter if they are D2 or D3 or UW-Milwaukee, or UW-Stout or Parkside. No matter, you did ALL of the UW-School System very proud of your cause and accomplishments, thus far! And even those who had gone to the UW-Schools to the workforce as Alumni, same thing.
I believe that that the ball club has now what it takes to get to the final four and also the championship. But the one thing to remain is now, is to win a Championship! And that is a task that many will be noted to follow.
I know Duke is all about their victory right now. But I also say this: one one of the team or coaches might say that “Wisconsin’s championship is coming. Or they’ll get their Championship.” Don’t be surprised if one of them is talking about it. And for Bo Ryan, he has his opinions and viewpoints, but knowing him, he’ll get better! Even he or the coaching staff might lure some Duke coaches to Wisconsin! (I know, wishful thinking)
So with that being said: Thanks for a great season. It’s been fun to watch and read about, and STILL and always…..On Wisconsin!
Sincerely (from a UW-Stout Alum, and a 22 year Badger Fan),