San Diego State

A Bunch of Amateurs

Featured photo by Ernie Anderson – link

What a bunch of f*******g amateurs!

March 1, 2016 – The Pit, Albuquerque

A fan yelled this at players last week in disgust. His team, the University of New Mexico, were in the closing minutes of a blowout loss to San Diego State. [In fairness, an Aztec fan yelled something similar at Viejas earlier this year.]

The irony of that moment has stuck with me. It’s ironic because his team, the New Mexico Lobos, are a bunch of amateurs. That’s the point of college athletics. It’s played by amateurs.

March Madness

College hoops dominate my free time January through March. As the conference season unfolds I find myself watching more and more and more college hoops. ESPNU is regularly on in the background like muzak while I work. Last night I watched conference tournament games from four different leagues. And by this point in March my attire has dwindled down to all-Aztecs-all-the-time… all red and black all the time.

For some people March Madness is the NCAA tournament. But for nuts like me? Sometimes I feel like March Madness is an actual illness. A happy addiction. 

Let’s Not Forget How This Ends

In our collective March Madness let’s not forget how this ends.

There are 351 division 1 teams in Men’s Basketball. Only 68 teams will make the NCAA tournament. And only one team will hoist a trophy next month in Houston.

Chances are very, very good that your favorite teams season is going to end in a loss. Even my beloved Aztecs are not likely to win it all.

You team’s season might end in a blow out or a buzzer beater. But in that moment… are you going to be mad at the team or are you going to appreciate all that they’ve done?

Here’s the advice of a long-time basketball nut:

  • Don’t let your March Madness turn into madness against the young men for whom March Madness celebrates.
  • Don’t blow up online, it just makes you look like a hater.
  • Don’t get a DUI or do something dumb under the influence, blaming a loss on your crimes.
  • Don’t disavow your allegiance to your team.
  • Don’t burn your house down. (Though couch burning in East Lansing is a quaint tradition, so that’s fine.)

And certainly don’t scream at players.

Disappointed? Sure. Sad? That’s normal. Bummed for the players? Totally¬†understandable.

But don’t take it out on them, they are a bunch of amateurs.


By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

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