You can tell a lot by the way people celebrate momentous occasions.
I would venture to guess that the celebrations in Canada when their team wins the men’s hockey gold medal in the Olympics every four years look a lot different than when a small college basketball school like a George Mason beats a perennial power like a UConn. There’s a sizable difference between a “relief party” and a “Holy sh**! I can’t believe that just happened!” throwdown.
However, given the state of the UConn men’s basketball program the past year and a half (their Hall of Fame coach retired, they were banished from the NCAA tourney for a year due to poor academics and they began playing in a conference that nine out of 10 sports fans have never heard of), Huskies fans were due for some good news … and a good party.
The fact that a seventh-seeded team like UConn is in Monday night’s National Championship game is remarkable on its own. Ditto for an eighth-seeded team like Kentucky. But the Wildcats and their fans have not gone through anything close to what UConn backers have suffered through as of late. (Minor disclosure: I’m a UConn alum, so humor me here – I willingly posted a video of the George Mason game … so screw).
The difference in on-campus joy when comparing Storrs, Conn. to Lexington, Ky. Saturday night was monumental. Kentucky fans celebrated by starting small fires (lame – bon fire or go home). UConn fans celebrated by pulling the pin on fire extinguishers (surprisingly loud fun for the whole family).
Here are a pair of underwhelming Kentucky videos below for none to enjoy. Feel the excitement! It should be noted that the first video has the following description: “Had to take our son to the ER during the UK Wisconsin game for minor dog bites. UK won 74-73 in the final seconds and the celebration began out in the streets. The ambulance here is blocking state st.” College!
Follow Metro Boston sports editor Matt Burke on Twitter @BurkeMetroBOS