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Kevin Keatts delivers a lesson in defense, but the team learns a lesson in life

(i made all of this up, in case it isn’t clear)

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Round-Virginia vs North Carolina-Wilmington Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

“All right, now, fellas, what am I doing when I go like this, and I put myself between the ball and the basket?”

“Coach is this a cheerful embrace of some kind?”

“No, it’s not a cheerful embrace. Tell me your name, son.”


“Well, Gary, listen, what I’m saying is that you need to be between your man and the rim at all times. When your man sets a screen, you need to hedge, but you need to be mindful of your man rolling to the basket. You see what I’m getting at here?”

“Honestly, sir, I think this is all lost on me; I’m on the tennis team.”

“You’re on the the— what the heck, Gary, who let you in here?”

“I dunno I just kinda wandered over; I heard some grunting, it’s just what happens.”

“Please get the heck out, Gary.”

“Fine, fine. But let me say that I personally feel as though sports are our common bond as athletes, and does it matter the nature of the sport or the size or shape of the sports, well no I don’t think so, and when you think about how America is a rich tapestry of people exerting themselves in the aim of togetherness and brotherhood, well I think you’ll find that—”


“What I’m speaking to is the commonality we share regardless of background or neighborhood, what I’m speaking to is in fact the very nature of the human condition and I would add that when you think about—”


“It behooves us all to carry ourselves in such a way that we might better improve our fellow man or woman, that we might make a great point of empathy, that we might find within ourselves the will to break through walls, that we might eventually—”

“Do any of the doors around here have locks?”

“Yes, yes, precisely, coach, exactly. Sure these doors may have locks, and I might could let myself in and defy your conventional wisdom. That’s what I’m talking about. I’m talking about a preoccupied basketball player absent-mindedly holding the door open for me as I pretend like I belong here. Don’t we all belong here?”

“Can someone please call Gary’s coach.”

“Why, just the other day, I happened to be in the library, and I was reading a passage in a book for one of my finals, and there was a portion that particularly struck me true, and it said, ‘in conjunction, we are tied; in unison, we are conjoined,’ and what I thought to myself in that moment was that we are all the same truth, tethered together in the same existence, and on account of it being the tennis offseason, I thought about this for a long time without moving.”

“Then what did you do?”

“I made a decision to do something else. I picked, and I rolled with it, and next thing I knew, the world was wide open to me.”

“Gary, you’re all right.”