Yesterday, the beloved Northwestern Wildcats beat Indiana University 68-55 in basketball. This likely doesn't mean much to most people, but it was their sixth consecutive win in the Big Ten. And that too likely doesn't mean much to most people. But you have to understand one thing --
The last time Northwestern won six straight games in their Big Ten conference was the 1932-33 season!!! That was 84 years ago!
Northwestern doesn't have a great team this year, but they are overwhelmingly better than most NU basketball teams in the past. That isn't saying much -- which I'll get to in a moment -- but the team is 18-4 this year and stands a very reasonable chance of making the NCAA basketball post-season tournament. And that likely doesn't mean much to most people, too. However (and this is a really big "however") --
The NCAA tournament began in 1939. And in the subsequent 77 years, only one major Division 1 team in history has never, ever made the tournament. Every other major college team in history has been to the tournament at least once. Except one team. And that single team is... (yes, you've probably figured it out at this point) -- Northwestern.
So...we are hoping.
The new Associate Press college basketball rankings were released today. Northwestern actually jumped on the list into the top 25. Just barely -- they're #25. They may only last there a week, but for one brief shining moment it was known as Camelot. And who knows? But this is only the second time in its history that Northwestern has made the top 25 basketball teams teams in the country -- and they have been playing basketball for 112 years.
The Cubs just won their first World Series in 108 years. It's not too much to hope for Northwestern simply getting into the NCAA tournament for the very first time -- the only major college team never to have done so -- after 77 years.
Here's a minute-and-15-second recap of the game that put the Wildcats into the Top 25 for only the second time in 112 years.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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