I used to fucking love March Madness. In 2016, I went to first and second-round games in Providence. In 2018, I was in Vegas for one of my best friend's bachelor parties from the opening weekend. I watched URI beat Trae Young's Sooners in OT before getting killed by Duke in the round of 32 (and losing on my Rams every-which-way that game) in a Sportsbook when that was still a huge deal to me. It was an awesome time.
But I haven't filled out a bracket for the last two years. I didn't catch any of the opening rounds live last weekend. It's weird, I still like college basketball, but I just haven't been interested in the post-covid cancellation world. I'm sure some of it has to do with URI sucking ass. Part of it is me trying to be responsible and not gamble rn. I haven't watched much CBB all year, and I know I'd blindly bet on games, and I am not really in a spot rn where I should be that reckless.
Excuse me for being a little roundabout in starting this blog. I just finished the Jimmy Savile Netflix doc, and it has me fucked up, but what I'm trying to say is that even though my interest and knowledge of college hoops have waned over the last few years, I'm still pretty shocked by this move. It's weird; I don't fuck with PC. I'm a Rhode Island Ram! That might not mean a whole lot, but I'm Rhode Island born and Rhode Island bred, and when I die, I'll be Rhode Island dead. This loss is sad for Rhode Island Island. Sad for Rhode Island Island. Sad for Rhode Island. Good! Bye! Ed!
I don't like PC, but I respect the program. I know they have a more storied history than URI. They're a bedrock of the old Big East. Dave Gavitt. Ernie D. Marvin Barnes. Ricky P. Billy Donovan. God Shammgod. Ryan Gomes. Similarly, in college sports, teams in the same conference may not like each other, but you root for your conference's best interest at the end of the day. Even though I don't like PC Basketball, as a Rhode Islander, I know their relevance is good for the state.
Sure, it's a private Catholic school, so I don't mean it in like that sense. URI is the every man, public institution of higher learning, but Rhode Island isn't one of the sexier or more recognized states. When I eventually become #HIREDdozo, I'll immediately jump into the conversation of most famous URI alums. Having one of the better programs of the last decade in Rhode Island brought plenty of joy, respect, money, etc., into the ocean state. This is a major loss.
Now, because I'm not as up-to-date about the current state of college basketball, maybe I'm wrong, but this feels like a massive blow to the Providence College program. Ed Cooley WAS Providence's favorite son. He brought the Friars to their best run of sustained success, arguably ever.
It's unfortunate to hear that potential marriage problems lead to Cooley leaving for DC. There are rumors of him accepting the job months ago and starting to recruit for the Hoyas during the season. Based on how the once 11-3 and 17-5 PC Friars ended the season, that could explain their collapse. It's crazy they were an 11 seed, given where they were a few weeks earlier!
Since Ed Cooley is a Providence native and such a figure in the state, it felt like this was his forever job. My future boss is right...big time scuzzy move. He betrayed the college and its fans. Being the first Big East coach to leave for another Big East school is definitely...something. Some have called it a Benedict Cooley situation.
People leave jobs. It's not that he left, but HOW he left. Hashtag shots fired by URI women's coach, Tammi Reiss??!??
Understandably, the Friar Faithful are not thrilled!
I never thought I'd see the day that Cooley left PC. I thought he'd coach there another 20-40 years. I have no clue who they'll will go after now (maybe Shammgod?) I just know I can sorta relate to how those fans are feeling right now. Tomorrow is the 5th anniversary of URI losing Danny Hurley. Sure, you could argue that everybody knew URI was a stepping-stone move for Hurley, and PC losing a Providence native to a conference rival is nothing like that, maybe a million times worse. I say, you're still losing someone who helped bring your program to great heights. Welcome to the cellar.