Coach K ain’t so bad.
Probably picks up litter on the sidewalk; probably delivers Thanksgiving turkeys to crippled old widows; probably even text-message donates to the Japan Nuclear Tsunamiquake Relief Fund automatically every 15 minutes. Swell guy.
But we hate him. I do. And I know you do, too.
Now he’s spewing some non-chalant ballyhoo about freshman super-sensation point guard Kyrie Irving going all Willis Reed and suiting up to play Friday. You just know K was holding out. Oh, and soon he’ll reveal he spells his surname with an extra “S”, just to screw with your spell-check.
Book ’em for the Final Four. Again. Did you see that region Duke drew? Talk about conspiracy theories. What a sweetheart set-up for the Sweet-16. I’ll bet Christian Laettner rose from the undead to blackmail the selection committee, by holding a sword to the jugular of an ACTUAL Duke, like they did in 1742 or whenever Coach K was thawed from his cryogenic slumber.
Is Coach K to blame for the endless parade of white dudes who’ve suited up in Devil Blue? White dudes who 90% of white dudes come to loath themselves? Bobby Hurley, Christian Laettner, Greg Pawlus, Jon Sheyer, Kyle Slingler, Cherokee Parks (don’t let the Native American name fool you, man’s blanche), and that bastion of all unholy put-your-shades-on Clorox clutch-and-grit-and-play-the-game-the-right-way white: J.J. Redick. Is this really all Coach K’s doing?
It’s his face, isn’t it. Satan mated with a rat. Out popped Coach K. Vaguely resembles The Furher.
It’s his gutter-mouth. His venomous riptide of consecutive curses he rattles at players, coaches and puppies. Prick.
Then, I peered up from my pile of rubble I just unloaded upon the poor, Polish-American elder, and thought of other sports figures who’ve spawned irrational hatred: Derek Jeter, Kobe Bryant, Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, the Dallas Cowboys, Joe Torre, Tiger Woods, the Detroit Red Wings. What do they have in common?
They win. Every. Last. One of them.
See, as a society, we respect excellence … but we don’t like it. Can’t relate to it. Secretly jealous of it. We’re always trying to cut down the pretty girl who shot us down, and the rich investment banker who’s Audi she jumped into instead. We pick apart do-gooders, expose scandals in clean-cut corners. Shining a bright light of darkness on those who shine brightest.
We can’t relate. Those who succeed consistently at the highest level are very much unlike you or I. They’re “elite”, and that word carries more negative euphemistic properties than “volume scorer.”
Show me a Duke fan, and I’ll show you someone who’s going places in life, and values success above all.
All they do is win. And if they’re always winning, then that means someone else must always be losing. And who’s that someone else?
You. Hater. Loser.