For years, I have broadcasted, refereed, and coached on a basketball floor. But for years, I hadn’t really played. Sure, I would go up and down the court a few times with my freshmen players, but not all out. This weekend was our annual Alumni Weekend at Foxcroft Academy. For the Alumni Basketball game, they needed one more player to be able to play five on five, so I decided to relive the glory days that never were.
Let’s talk about the bad, or at least the not so good. I’m woefully out of shape. Yes, I hit the elliptical five times a week. I walk miles on the track, but that isn’t basketball shape. My lungs were on fire after three trips up the court, but as Coach Nelson would say, suck it up buttercup, so Player Nelson did just that.
The humidity didn’t help. I was sweating before we even started. That should have been a sign. Gyms in Maine aren’t air conditioned. They aren’t meant for basketball in the summer, but we struggled through.
Now to the good things. The players, ranging from the Class of 1973 to the Class of 2014 were so much fun to play with. We all tried to play hard. Some were more successful than others, but we all had a ton of laughs.
The memories were great. I got to play with a teammate from 20 years ago, and darn it, he’s still good. It was fun to think back and remember days gone by. My shot wasn’t as awful as it could have been. I drained a few from downtown, and I may have missed a couple, but it felt really good when it went through the hoop. Advice to young players…..you miss every shot you don’t take.
I was sore when I woke up this morning. My back hurt and my legs were a little weak, but I’m so glad I played.
I will end this with really good news. They didn’t pay us to play, so I’m still an amatuer. If Coach K or John Calipari is reading this, I still have eligibility. Feel free to call. I will be laying on the bed next to a bottle of ibuprofen but the phone will be close by.