Longtime Casual Hoya reader AngryHoya submits these Thoughts on a 2007 Journey to Memphis Wherein The Hoyas BEAT The Tigers:
On the road to Graceland (via Creative Commons license)
It is not that hard to go Washington, D.C-to-Memphis in under ten hours if you are a competent driver and only stop ONCE for Chick-Fil-A (preferably in Knoxville). Leave early in the morning and you can roll into the Westin Beale Street (conveniently across the street from FedEx Forum or whatever it's called) and catch a tardy dinner at The Rendevous, the only place you should be eating before or after any Georgetown away-game in Memphis. That's what I did three years ago. Piece of cake.
More Journey to Memphis after The Jump:I also traveled without tickets; apparently my Hoya Hoop Club donor level wasn't quite hefty enough to score some school-provided seats. And this could have been a problem. You have to remember how enormous the 2007 game was. Both teams were undefeated in ranked in the top-five. Breathless news coverage in the local Memphis papers had John Calipari himself saying a seat at the game was impossible to find:
"People are calling about tickets, and I'm telling them there are none," Calipari said. "They're saying the arena holds 18,000, and there's got to be tickets, but there are none. I mean, I don't have any."
Even though John Calipari is an inveterate liar (more on this later), I was sweating seats and wondering if I would have to watch the game at the Daily Grill inside my hotel and charge a bunch of drinks to my room (for triple Platinum Starwoood points, at least). But I was flush that year and about $200 in cash or so got me two upper-deck tickets after about 15 minutes of hunting on the morning of the game. I probably overpaid, but whatever. Three years later I would be rolling in blog money.
I have no recollection of the game, except that I was sitting very far away and I don't think it went that poorly. I can go look at the ESPN Gamecast and see that we were in it for about two-thirds until Calipari's crooked horsemen started running away with things. And here's a ridiculous stat: Memphis shot 76 percent from the free-throw line. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Whatever happened to that skill in April?
Which gets me to my point. When those of us who have occasionally left our mother's basement to do good deeds eventually die and ascend into Heaven and maybe after a few weeks get on good terms with St. Peter and ask to borrow The Book of All Things, within which All History is recorded, we will flip to the page for December 22, 2007 and see the following: GEORGETOWN DEFEATS MEMPHIS.
I was probably so sanguine during the game because I KNEW this would happen. KNEW IT. Calipari is a cancer. And not the kind you discover and beat and then attend fun-runs for. He is the kind you learn about on Tuesday and die from on Friday. One day you are drinking Heinekens on a sunny summer day in Boston while wearing your Marcus Camby jersey and the next day Federal Marshall are at your AD's office putting your NCAA Regionals Champion Trophy into a plastic baggie so they can be swabbed for Cocaine and shards of $100 bills.
And lo and behold, Derrick Rose didn't take his SAT! And that's only what the NCAA found. The blog is not a forum for libel, so in this space I will not speculate on the sacks of money, the bags of blow or the buses full of strippers that may or may not have also been involved in enticing student-athletes to come play in Memphis. WE JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT WAS GOING ON.
What we do know is this: Georgetown hasn't lost to Memphis in more than twenty years. The game I saw in 2007? FORFEIT. Along with a few more games. So let me tell you, that game in Memphis was the best I ever saw that never happened.
You know, this might be more of a cautionary tale for Kentucky, than a Memphis travelogue. Fine. We'll re-run it in March when we lose to Kentucky in the Sweet 16. And run it a third time WHEN THE NCAA DECIDES WE ACTUALLY WON.
Oh. If you've never been to Graceland, I can't recommended a visit highly enough. And pay extra for the audio tour.