The Oakland University men's basketball team crushed Oral Roberts (the university, not the man) in the Summit League Championship last night, earning their second straight invitation to the NCAA tournament.
Finishing 90-76 at the final buzzer, the game was closer at the start of the second than OU Coach Greg Kampe would have liked. Kampe with his trademark, "I need a trim but I like my hair to look as disheveled as possible" cut, also rocked a black long sleeve t-shirt on the sidelines rather than a suit, almost taunting his opposing coach by suggesting, "This is just a practice on our way to the NCAA, bitch".
With five players on the OU team in double figures, normal standout Keith Benson, who finished with 28 digits, a few blocks and 14 trips to Windex the glass, spread the feast around to his fellow teammates all night long. "They owe him a cheeseburger for every assist he dishes", says one locker room insider of Benson. The declaration spilled the beans, or more accurately stated, the cheese, about a gentlemen's agreement between Benson and the rest of the team when they benefit from Benson's penetration into the paint. Coach Kampe didn't seem to mind. "Greg needs to put a few pounds on that scrawny frame".
While the betting line, championship arena attendance and general TV interest remained soft on OU, most basketball purists and NCAA fans were left asking, "Oakland Who?". Only famous for matriculating one other hack and not so famous author, PM Wortham, the small engineering university north of Detroit, done good.
Spirits remain high on the team after the Summit League win, but should soon fade once their assignment is announced in the first round of the NCAA. One of the benefits of winning a smaller divisional basketball championship is that you get an invitation to the NCAA big dance. One of the drawbacks is that you get pitted against a number one seed in the first round to get yourself spanked. That said, GO GRIZZ! "Wear some arse padding".