While I was happily watching Grey's Anatomy, the university men's basketball team managed to play their way in to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament.
I'm happy for them; they appear to have peaked at the right time, playing the best ball they have all season. It's great for the students and alumni, a chance for more national recognition for the school.
But I can't help but see dollars waving goodbye as they race out the door.
No matter that the powers that be insist that college sports are "amateur", the truth is that sports programs cost an insane amount of money. A well performing team or two may bring some attention to the university. But does it do anything for the school other than "enhance the college experience"?
Do grades go up when the team does well? Do donations come pouring in to the scholarship accounts when a tournament is won? Not to a large enough extent to counter the funds expended to win.
If Indiana wins tonight, Marquette will face them in their Elite 8 game; the Hoosiers just happen to be coached by Tom Crean, Buzz Williams' immediate predecessor at Marquette. The local media will go into frenzy mode over that, I'm sure. At least our game is on Saturday, not on Easter Sunday.
Once the tournament is over, our attention will go toward that little new-league-forming endeavor that's in the works. If you haven't heard, the Big East is becoming the new Big East, focused around the basketball schools, including MU, rather than big football.
The dollar signs are setting new land speed records...