Trip Start Aug 15, 2007
46Trip End Dec 30, 2008
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I had the thrill/privilege/joy of attending in person each of Carolina's games during the 2008 tourney. A big shout out to:
-George (GJ) Harrison (accompanied me to 9 of 10 games in 3 different cities) George appears to be far more responsible than me (Ernst & Young partner and stable family man with an awesome wife and 2 cute kids) - but be not deceived, he lives for UNC hoops almost as much as I do. (foto below)
-Jason Kilar (who flew cross country for a 24 hour trip to witness UNC beat Louisville to make the Final 4) J is the only person who lives and dies for Carolina hoops as much as me
-Ryan Schwanke & J-Jones (who joined me & George at the Final 4 in San Antonio). Ryan has gained more weight than wisdom since we graduated but remains a great friend of solid character. (foto below)
Witnessing Davidson's upset of mighty Gtown, a great game between Louisville and Tennesse, and watching top teams practice live - all added to the unique experience of attending 10 NCAA tourney games live!
Only those of you whose alma maters have lost in the Final 4 (Bobowski, B-Kim, Pauwels) know the extreme pain and dejection that I felt after Kansas ripped the Heels. Hats off to HBS buddy Bennet (Golden Boy) Kim - who has been at 2 of UCLA's 3 Final 4's in the last 3 years. We were able to meet up after both our teams got bounced. Unlike me, Bennet was not depressed and befriended some lovely ladies from Memphis (his legend grows) - (foto below).
The acute depression was tempered by 3 things:
-Attending every game with good friends
-Seeing sports celebs up close (Pittino, Bruce Pearl, John Thompson II & III, Roy, etc)
-Realizing that even in defeat, I was on a pretty cool odyssey
Sports Note: (rounds 1 & 2 in Raleigh, rounds 3 & 4 in Charlotte, Final 4 in San Antonio).
Rnd 1 - NC over Mt St Maries, Davidson over Gonzaga, Gtown over UMBC, & Arkansas over Indiana)
Rnd 2 - NC over Ark & Davidson over Gtown
Rnd 3 - NC over Wash State and Louisville over Tennessee
Rnd 4 - NC over Louisville
Final 4 - Memphis over UCLA, Kansas over NC