Staying up (foolishly) for Nevada basketball*

* UPDATE, 9:40 a.m. Damnit!

TAMPA, Fla. — Just watching the Nevada-New Mexico State WAC semifinal game on ESPN 2. I probably shouldn’t be because the Yankees’ clubhouse opens at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow and it would be foolish to be late.

But it’s March and it’s college basketball and it’s my alma mater. So… yeah.

As they tend to do on all telecasts, ESPN is showing shots of Reno, and it makes me miss the Biggest Little City a lot. Don’t get me wrong, New York is an awesome place. Wouldn’t trade it. In fact, anybody who has a chance to live in the big city should do it at least once just for the experience.

The city is many things, but it’s not comfortable, not like Reno.

I covered the basketball team for one season, the year they went to the Sweet 16. There were lots of cool moments during that run, though none stand out more that Kevinn Pinkney’s dunk (see video above) against Gonzaga in the second round of the tournament.

After that season, I got off the beat and enjoyed some of the games as a fan. Lawlor Events Center can get loud, especially when the student section stepped up its game.

For instance, it’s pretty standard at plenty of gyms for fans to pull out car keys and start shaking them at the end of game: “warm up the bus.” Typical stuff.

But once, as Nevada hammered Hawaii, the student section surprised me with its creativity.

“Warm up the boat!” they chanted. “Warm up the boat!”

— 30 —

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