Villanova puts an emphatic bow on the college basketball season in its national championship win

 USA Today via Reuters

USA Today via Reuters

Imagine having your dream taken from your control, re-calibrating your approach, working your ass off then, you wake up to stories of salacious, dishonest & illegal activities as common as the sound of squeaking shoes in an empty gym after a loss. That was me with college basketball this season.

From African-American coursework, to strippers all the way down to impermissible benefits, it all points back to a system built upon the dehumanization & subsequent monetarization of black & brown bodies, the talent within them & the capacity for greatness that comes with it.

When you consider this country was “founded” by an angry twink who decided that since no one had posted to Instagram claiming America as their own, he would stake claim, manipulate its current inhabitants while kidnappingroyalty, who had proven their own volition expanding in their home countries, to tend the land for him, you realize its just par the course.

Considering basketball was first rocked by gambling, match fixing & point shaving in the 40s & 50s, during segregation, how do we plan to victim shame this time?

You, the people, being robbed of Billy Preston, Rick Pitino, De’Anthony Melton, Brian Bowen in what was arguably one of the best seasons ever speaks to the level at which the game currently stands.

Yet those in power, the same people who have fought tooth & nail to keep the proverbial foot on our necks, will never be able to touch the Porter Mosers, John Beileins.

The Jay Wright’s of the world.

Thank BasedGod for that.

John Patrick Beilein, strong name for a strong character. & it’s quite fitting because, for the second time in his career, he took a team that nobody was talking about & made a beeline for the last game of the season.

Never an assistant coach, Beilein has been confidently patrolling the sidelines since 1975 so none of this should come as a surprise or seem to be a fluke.

Players play.

Coaches coach & cheerleaders cheer, right?

Well, Trey Burke seemed on a mission in 2013.

As did Charles Matthews & Muhammad Ali Abdur-Rahkman this season.

Sure, that doesn’t sound like much now but just a small reminder:

Beilein took this job during the final year of scholarship reduction due to the alleged involvement of former players in the Ed Martin scandal.

A guy who has coached at every level- high school, junior college & Divisions 1-3- also has shown a propensity for turning things around, scoring 20-win seasons at 7 different schools, including 4 D-1 schools.

The same goes for Jerold Taylor Wright, Jr.

Nothing happens singularly at any moment in the universe.

Jay Wright went to his college professor advising he wanted to coach college basketball & the support was provided, a year after his college career ended, he became a coach.

Circles are dope because they allow you to hold yourself accountable by never losing sight of where you started while simultaneously continuing to progress forward. It’s virtually impossible to get into coaching this way now.

Being someone who has tried, no degree, no love.

But what degree program teaches you to continue to instruct your kids to play the right way through the entirety of a record-setting Final Four game because you know that this single game isn’t what matters?

What STEM class is going to take you through the psychology of confidently telling college kids who’ve been taught that winning is all that matters, that they played their best game & it just wasn’t enough on that occasion after taking the best team in the country of out its rhythm for the majority of the game?

It’s a beautiful thing neither of these men gave up on themselves & continued to pursue a vision nobody could see but themselves.

To the naked eye, a 17-point loss is a waste.

Personally speaking, there aren’t two better advocates to what basketball is all about.

The beauty of it all is that it shows, if you do it right.

For the first time in months, Villanova looked rattled. Frustrated. The same team that punched Kansas in the mouth & wouldn’t stop, even once the dogs were called off.

Michigan went on to lose by 17 but also put together a gameplanto accomplish that.

On this day? In this moment, it wasn’t sustainable.

The journey is to get there. Villanova has built a product worth seeing every time. If UConn is bad for basketball, Villanova should be deported.

Remember, Donte DiVencenzo was on a redshirt the last time Villanova won a natty.

Last season, Omari Spellman was forced to sit out by the powers that be.

Something tells me North Carolina would be singing a completely different tune without that get out of jail free card.

What Duke used to be & mean to college basketball, Villanova now is. & the thing about Villanova is that you don’t have to have ridiculous test scores to get in.

The real story is in the process. College basketball was at its absolute best this year.

Arizona State going from unranked to top-5 to humming along the bubble.

Duke teasing us with the most talented youth movement since the Power Rangers only to remind us that experience trumps all while signing an even better class with more maturity, consistency & leadership.

Loyola, who gets to call the greatest city in the world home, captivated the nation’s focus & reminded us what this country was alleged to have been about from the beginning. Likely the least recruited team in their bracket 1-12. & one of the last four teams standing.

Bill Self, after losing an All-American caliber power forward to the powers that be throwing rocks & hiding their hand, found a way to beat that exact Duke team when nobody else seemed to be able to & stole a final four bid with the exact same team everyone said the streak would end with in December.

So, thank you Michigan. Villanova. Loyola, Kansas.

Even Duke, Kentucky, Virginia, UMBC, Mississippi State, UCLA, Marquette & St John’s.

Andrew Jones, we got love for you kid. Keep going.

Goodbye DeAndre, Marvin, Trae, Mikal, Mo.

Thanks for giving us the greatest season of college basketball yet.

Welcome Zion, RJ, Shareef, Romeo, Bol, Quentin.

You’re up next. A lot of people will compare you to those that come before & after, but we’re just excited to see what you have to offer this exact moment.

Ironically enough?

The last 6th man to win MOP?

The NCAA says its an invisible man because vacating wins means they don’t have to return any of the profits yet those same exploited athletes are supposed to act as if they never played.

Luke Hancock torched Michigan for 22 off the bench in that game. So even with 116 years of experience, Beilein still has to learn how to scout the entire team & not just a starting lineup.

Something tells me we’ll be congratulating that fella on a natty soon enough. The process has me 100% confident.

But for now, Villanova: Congratulations!

Keep balling on these ninjas, Shinobi Rose.