March 18, 2009
MIAMI, Fla. (Hilton Miami Airport) -
Last updated March 19 at 11:15 p.m.
I'll go ahead and start a list of well-wishers and shout-outs that will be updated here as regularly as possible. Shoot me an e-mail with your name and current home. If you're an alumnus, let me know your graduation year, or, if you're a current student give me your classification and hometown. Thanks to all of you who have responded so far and keep the good vibes coming.
Please e-mail me with any questions or positive messages for our team, and I'll do my best to pass them along, or at least make a bad joke at your expense.
Matt (March 18 9:13 a.m.)
Matt, a proud 2006 alumnus, checked in to say good luck. He's been in the fold since 2002 and was witness to the heartbreaking Southland Conference Tournament championship-game defeats against Sam Houston State and UTSA, so this year's success is especially sweet for him. Matt will be sporting his Lumberjack Basketball shirt at the Alumni Association chapter watch party in Austin on Friday. Be there, Austin-area 'Jacks! (For more information on this and other functions, see the Alumni Association Watch Party story in the headlines section of the Men's Basketball home page at SFAJacks.com.)
Elliot (March 18 9:15 a.m.)
Elliot wants to say "hey" and let the 'Jacks know that they can take down Syracuse. If you were an SFA freshman around 2002-2004, you may remember Elliot as one of the orientation leaders in the university's nationally acclaimed student orientation program. If you frequented open mic nights at various establishments in Nacogdoches around the same time period, you are likely more familiar with his work in that arena. I'll say this for Elliot: He does the best rendition of "Let's Get It On" I've ever heard performed by a skinny white kid with an acoustic guitar. Good to hear from you Elliot.
Keith (March 18 9:16 a.m.)
Keith has "really enjoyed reading my work throughout the year" which, by the way, is a sure-fire way to get your submission posted here (hint, hint). Keith worked in the athletic department from 2000-2001, aiding Assistant Athletic Director John Branch as an intern in marketing and promotions. He currently lives in Jefferson City, Mo. Keith wants us to have fun in Miami and claims he will be following this blog "with great interest." (Keep buttering me up, Keith, you're already in the hunt for the blog's Tournament MVP award.)
Ryan (March 18 9:26 a.m.)
Ryan wins the prize as the first non-Lumberjack to get in the game. He's the Assistant AD in charge of development at Northwestern State, but a good guy nonetheless. Ryan worked alongside SFA staffers Jeremy Stolfa, James Dixon and myself (along with countless others from various schools in the Southland Conference) to help the SLC administrative staff put on last week's tournament in Katy. Ryan checks in this morning to wish us congratulations once again on our big win against UTSA and wants us to enjoy the NCAA Tournament experience, which he hears is "second to none." According to his signature, he also wants me to consider the environment before printing his e-mail. What a guy! After all the trees I killed putting together postseason guides and notes for this weekend, that's probably a good idea.
Alan (March 18 10:47 a.m.)
Alan is a 1977 graduate now residing in enemy territory in Lake Charles, La., home of the McNeese State Cowboys. In his home range, he's vastly outnumbered by some of the best and most passionate Division I FCS football fans in the country, but he's risking drawing their scorn by writing in to wish us luck. In an even bolder move, Alan assures me that he'll be watching and rooting us on via the internet at work. Hope the boss doesn't mind, Alan. On a related note, that raises an interesting question. How far can you push Casual Friday? Would head-to-toe purple body paint be a bit much? Just something to think about. They don't call it March Madness for nothing.
Jason (March 18 2:36 p.m.)
While I can't say much for his choice in higher education, Jason has excellent taste in last-minute, fly-by-night, NCAA Tournament blogs. He's a Sam Houston grad who works in media relations at a Louisiana institution. That's two quick strikes on Jason, but he comes through swinging from the heels with a hearty endorsement for my little endeavor here and a big good luck to Coach Kaspar and the 'Jacks. Jason's good people in my book.
Spencer (March 18 3:18 p.m.)
Spencer is a 2007 graduate and former Lumberjack golfer. He currently lives in Minneapolis, Minn., and is a little bummed that we didn't end up playing our first- and second-round pod up there, so he could watch. That's selfish, Spencer. You would have me miss out on a trip to Miami just so you could see the 'Jacks play in person? All the same, Spencer says he is enjoying the blog, and he likes my sense of humor, so we'll give him a pass. Stay warm and axe 'em!
Amber (March 18 5:24 p.m.)
Amber collected her diploma in 2007 and resides in San Marcos, Texas, these days. I'd be remiss if I didn't disclose that we're pretty good friends and that she used to work with me at SFA. That's how I can comfortably post the following quote verbatim without fear of retribution: "I'll be in Beaumont this weekend with Texas State watching baseball, but trust me - I'll have on all the purple that I can - which will be limited to unmentionables - to cheer for my Jacks." I don't think I can add anything significant to that, so I'll just leave things as they are.
Blake (March 18 7:20 p.m.)
Blake is an alumnus living in Fort Worth, Texas. He graduated in 1994 and wants the team to know that they have done the university proud. Blake, thanks for the kind words, and, yes, we are very proud of what we have accomplished this season.
Dan (March 18 7:31 p.m.)
Dan is a big-time supporter of SFA basketball and a former Lumberjack baller himself. Although I think they still called 'em "cagers" back when Dan was hoopin' in Nac. Looking forward to seeing you in Miami, Dan.
The Bryants (March 18 8:41 p.m.)
The Bryants in Tulsa, Okla., give us our first family shout-out this evening. They are looking forward to SFA's run in the Big Dance and want to give their best to the coaching staff and team.
Todd (March 18 9:20 p.m.)
Speaking of firsts, Todd in Nacogdoches brings us our first assumed name. Apparently, both Todd and his alias, "Chuck Quattlebaum," want to wish Coach Kaspar and the 'Jacks all the best. I'm not sure what's up with the pseudonym, but I'll take it. Besides, if Todd and Chuck are both rooting for the 'Jacks, that's one more fan, by my count.
Josh M. (March 18 10:26 p.m.)
Josh M. in Louisiana wants Josh Alexander to know that everybody in Shreveport has got his back ... and also that everybody in Shreveport wants to see Josh A. drop 30 against Syracuse in Friday's game. I don't know about that one, Josh M. I really don't think Josh A. needs to lose that much weight. He looks pretty fit to me. Besides, I'm no physician, but I think losing 30 pounds over the course of a 40-minute basketball game might be too tall an order, even for a former SLC Player of the Year. What's that? Not what you meant by "drop 30?" Man, I can't keep up with you crazy kids and your basketball slang these days.
Lee (March 18 10:52 p.m.)
Lee in Bonham, Texas, is a 1979 graduate. Unfortunately, his enthusiasm for the 'Jacks is putting his marriage in jeopardy. Now I'm as spooky as the next guy whose livelihood depends on the performance of a bunch of athletes. But I stay away from the gross superstitions. Lee has apparently been wearing his SFA t-shirt, without a washing, for so long that his wife is threatening to put him on the couch. Better you than me, Lee, but why don't you keep it on for a couple more days? You just never know.
JoAnne (March 19 8:23 a.m.)
JoAnne is a 1981 graduate with ties to senior Nick Shaw. She wants Nick and the 'Jacks to disappoint her boss, who is an avid Syracuse fan. It doesn't take anything as rare or significant as a No. 14 upsetting a No. 3 in the NCAA Tournament to upset my boss, JoAnne. Sounds like a good working environment to me. Especially in this economy. Hang onto that job.
Russ (March 19 9:10 a.m.)
Russ is behind the 'Jacks "all the way." He also apparently writes on the editorial board of a newspaper or magazine, because he likes to use the "royal we." Well Russ, we are glad you're in our corner and we (meaning me) appreciate the fact that you appreciate this blog.
Laura (March 19 3:08 p.m.)
Laura is a proud 2003 alumnus. She can't tell me how excited she is to be rooting for her Lumberjacks as they take on and beat Syracuse tomorrow. Could you have at least tried to tell me, Laura? That's kind of the point of this write-in thing. I mean are you jumping-up-and-down excited? Hyperventilating-and-fanning-yourself-dramatically-with-your-hands excited? Wet-your-pants excited? We need to know. It's okay, just something to think about next time, eh?
Sparky (March 19 4:09 p.m.)
Our most senior alumnus to date, Sparky, is captaining a small but very enthusiastic group of Lumberjack faithful in Denton, Texas. Sparky is a 1972 grad who recalls watching the 1970 team that included five NBA draftees, as well as all-time scoring champion James Silas. All that stuff took place at the NAIA level. Now Sparky is gearing up for the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance at the NCAA Division I level. I guess you could say he's seen the best and the best of SFA basketball. Enjoy the game, Spark.
That's just about going to do it for the shout-outs and well-wishers until after Friday's game. I'll be a little busy tomorrow, hopefully posting a story about our first-ever win in the NCAA Tournament. The team and I appreciate all the positive feedback you've contributed over the last couple of days. Come 12:15 p.m. tomorrow, grab a good seat and something cold to drink, hang on tight and think happy thoughts. I'll see you on the other side.
-- SFA --