Neither of us fully recovered from that loss that still stings — the slogfest that turned into a five overtime DiggerFiesta under the smiling gaze of Trey Ball Jesus — we decided to lunch in hopes that one final rehashing of the sordid affair would be soothing balm on our wounded souls. That our lingering ennui would be purged once and for all.
So, off to Ghyslain we went, knowing the crowd would be up scale, the Cobb Salad the best anywhere, and the Valentine’s Day chocolate selection special enough for our brides. That there was pronunciation guide signage at the cash register was but a pleasant bonus, bringing clarity and assuring we wouldn’t struggle with the eatery’s name in the future. (“Ghyslain = G-Sleigh”).
Not that many minutes into our repast, after several back and forths of what was Russ thinking, contemplations of why Pitino only runs one offense, diagnoses of whether Gorgui’s hand has fully healed and several exhortations of deeply seated despondency, Bruce surprised with this non sequitur, “We had a great recruiting class last Wedensday.”
Understand, this is a fellow, traditionally ready to break down the next season’s Xs & Os mid-June, at which point, I traditionally admonish, “Don’t peak too soon.”
Flummoxed and quickly choking down the salad in my mouth, I couldn’t help but chastise, “Why are you talking football. It’s mid February, for heaven’s sake.”
“Because it’s something positive,” he replied.
When I mentioned I’m still looking forward to the day when we routinely out-recruit Florida instead of South Florida, and after we’d agreed that Charlie Strong can and will coach ‘em up, we returned to our intended agenda. Like our beloved Cardinals, we needed to regain our focus.
While I’m on record as being skeptical of this Cardinal team’s will to win, it is too soon to throw in the towel — as Houston’s Guy Lewis did at one of the Cardinal players during a fast break early in that infamous national semi-final tilt that ended up a Phi Slamma Jama dunkathon.
An infusion of resolve is not beyond the capacity of this bunch.
Peyton Siva is never at a loss for confidence, justifiably enhanced during the tumultuous days of his youth. Gorgui Dieng always remains focused, eyes straight ahead, intent on improving. Russ Smith has the attention span of three-year-old, so he’s already forgotten what an abysmal game he played Saturday. Pitino does have other offensive sets on his resumé. The others will follow if intestinal fortitude emerges at the top. Call it trickle down.
It was a sign of maturity on the part of Bruce and myself that we didn’t pull out the schedule he always carries in his wallet, go through the remaining games and count the potential Ws and Ls, followed by a breakdown of seeding scenarios.
Then again, maybe it was futility with all of the above that led the conversation into the area of our personal work out regimes.
Louisville fans, no matter their opinion of Saturday’s game, are in a tizzy.
That’s the State of Union in these parts . . . today.
Change. C’est possble.
There are games to be played. Tournaments to be contested.
“One Shining Moment,” is yet to be sung.
– Seedy K