What we're watching (all times EST): First round of Northern Trust Open (Golf Channel) at 3. Blackhawks at Rangers (NHL Network) at 7. Wisconsin at Michigan State (ESPN), Virginia Tech at Florida State (ESPN2), and Iowa at Penn State (ESPNU) in men's college basketball at 7. Celtics at Bulls (TNT) at 8. West Virginia at Pittsburgh (ESPN), Vanderbilt at Mississippi (ESPN2), Brigham Young at San Francisco (ESPNU), and Arizona at Washington State (Fox Sports Net) in men's college basketball at 9. Clippers at Trail Blazers (TNT) at 10:30. Gonzaga at Santa Clara (ESPN2) and Arizona State at Washington (Fox Sports Net) in men's college basketball at 11.
Tom Scocca on basketball and race "One late-winter evening in 1987, I had the misfortune of witnessing American mythology in action. My high school was hosting a basketball playoff game against another school from our county. I wouldn't call it a rival school; we had too little in common to be rivals. The county school system was unofficially segregated-not into white and black schools but into all-white schools and integrated ones. The visitors came from the boom suburbs, from the newest, richest, and whitest school in the system. Our school, like our town, was old, poor, and integrated. Need it be said that we were good at basketball? We were the best at basketball. I use the plural here even though I myself was terrible at basketball. There is a kind of school spirit you get from having a balky heating system and no doors on the bathrooms. Every game I would stand in the bleachers (which collapsed two years later) and bear witness, whooping at our collective excellence, hollering abuse at our hapless foes. So: we were very good. We had a sure and graceful six-foot-four point guard, Monroe Brown, who could pin a shot to the glass and who went on to play in the NCAA tournament with Penn State. We had a resourceful little shooting guard, Ron Green, who once caused pandemonium in the gym by pilfering the ball from an overmatched farmboy, breaking free, and rising, all five-ten or -eleven of him, for an unexpected dunk. Nobody was NBA material; the one future pro I remember passing through the gym, a guy named Bobby Hurley who was even pastier than I was, lit us up for 28 points. Most nights, though, we were in complete command." [Transition]