I took a little umbrage with resident cheater Kelvin Sampson's assessment that Houston won the game for 39+ minutes before the buzzer beater. Sure, they played well enough to win, but to pretend like they dominated or ever had control is fake news. Saturday was shades of Kansas '14, yes, though never quite as foreboding. Trey had to carry us then, the 2018 iteration of the Wolverines carries each other. A senior MAAR, who was just seconds away from walking off the court in a Michigan uniform for the last time, passed it to Freshman Jordan Poole to take and make the biggest shot of the season (probably the last 5 seasons) for the Wolverines. Because when it's crunch time and the chips are down, you want the ball in the hands of the guy that blew confetti out of Jim Nance's hair on national television. After realizing his shot went in, Poole would inexplicably sprint toward the wrong bench, before turning around and avoiding his teammates in what looked like an elaborate game of professional tag. Yes, there's professional tag. If he was not contained by media, fans, and chairs, Poole would have won that game of tag.
The last second victory over the upstart Houston Cougars wasn't the most amazing turn of events in the history of college basketball, but for a fanbase that has found itself on the business end of that type of situation sooooo many times (in so many sports, in so many ways) it was nothing short of miraculous. It feels good to win when you should. It feels better to win when you shouldn't. And nothing feels better than when all is lost and you're packing up your shit angrily and only watching peripherally as the opponent misses two free throws and Livers throws a 90mph heater to MAAR who dishes it to Poole for a deep-ass all-net three pointer at the buzzer to advance to the Sweet Sixteen for the 2nd consecutive season.
This is typically where I'd go in to a few sentences about little brother and all their fans that dropped $300 per ticket to watch underachieving undeveloped high school talent completely collapse. Not tonight. I'm going stop my celebration lap and put my arm around a Spartan like Moe Wagner would. Because this is not about them anymore.
The Wolverines head West to face Texas A&M in LA on Thursday. Enjoy the ride.