Classic GIF: Buzz Williams Dances (Again) On West Virginia Logo to ‘Country Roads’ As Marquette Keeps On Winning

Does anyone at Marquette still miss Tom Crean?

I understand Crean is a great coach and an in-law to the Harbaugh coaching dynasty. Crean also established himself as an elite coach in the college game guiding Marquette from 1999-2008. When he finally left for supposedly greener pastures in the B1G Ten, Marquette was supposed to immediately plunge into the depths of the Big East.

Instead it turned out to be the best thing to ever happen to the basketball program. Because how could you possibly not like Buzz Williams?

buzz-williams-marquette-dances-to-country-roads

Photo by Noah K. Murray/The Star-Ledger

How can you not like the intensity, the perspiration pouring from his shirt like he had been sitting in a sauna for an hour, the pure emotion.

Then there is the stunt he pulled off Friday night at West Virginia.

Buzz Williams Dances…Again

Feeling a need to put his foot down discipline wise, Williams benched three regulars for the first half for violation of unspecified team rules, leaving the Golden Eagles (a handle which very few students/alumni dare call them) with only six players for the first half. Predictably Marquette would eventually fall behind by 16.

But then Darius Johnson-Odom, Junior Cadougan, and Vander (no relation to Vida) Blue returned for the second half, and Marquette made a furious rally to record a 61-60 win.

Then it happened, a moment that within a couple hours became part of GIF history:

Buzz did a brief dance. To “County Roads.” Right on the WVU logo. Then he headed for the ESPN commentators table as WVU students had to be restrained by security.

buzz-williams-dance-west-virginia-country-roads

Hat tip: SBNation

That, folks, was legendary.

That was generating pro-wrestling like heat, generating boos from an angry crowd.

Williams then apologized in the post-game presser, saying he did not realize that the John Denver classic is West Virginia’s unofficial anthem, and described his behavior as being very unprofessional.

I guess West Virginia is going to have to remember that and use it for motivation when the teams meet again in conference play next year.

No, wait. The Mountaineers are leaving the Big East for whatever is left of the Big XII. Enjoy those road trips to Lubbock, and they think getting out of Morgantown for a road game in Milwaukee is a challenging commute.

So maybe Buzz was “unprofessional,” but the last time I checked this was college basketball, as opposed to professional basketball.

Buzz Williams’ personality is a perfect fit for the heritage of the Marquette program.

Buzz Following In Al McGuire’s Footsteps

If you grew up around here like me in the 1970’s during the Al McGuire era, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

McGuire put the then–independent program on the map in an era where the likes of Indiana, Kentucky, and UCLA dominated. The team took on all comers during the regular season. There were intense matchups against the University of Detroit, like Marquette a Jesuit school in the middle of a Midwestern city. They had an equally brash coach, by the name of Dick Vitale. (Yes, he once had a career before broadcasting.)

Coach McGuire many times berated his players, famously referring to one not being able to “hit the ocean from a beach,” then later does a photo shoot with the player, who heaves a ball into a frozen Lake Michigan. He talked his players down because he loved them so much. Al was also groundbreaking for recruiting into New York City and getting players from the NYC playgrounds to come to Marquette.

marquette77My favorite McGuire story was from early in his coaching career.

The team had made it to the 1968 Regional Semi-Final against the Kentucky Wildcats, and Lexington just happened to be the regional site. This was long before the NCAA Tourney was seeded with higher seeds wearing the home jerseys. McGuire made a big stink to Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp (who Al despised in part because Rupp was fielding an all-white team, and Al reminded his African-American players of that fact) that his team had just as much a right to choose whether to wear the home-white or away-dark uniforms. So a coin toss was arranged, McGuire won the toss.

McGuire elected to go with road blue.

Rupp was irate, and Kentucky would go on to run it up on Marquette to the tune of a 107-89 final. But McGuire made his point – and the next year Marquette beat Kentucky in the NCAA tournament.

That set the stage for the rest of McGuire’s run at Marquette, including oft-introduced flashy jerseys, culminating with the untucked 1977 threads the team road all the way to the National Championship.

Which leads me back to the current Buzz Williams-led team.

Buzz Williams Walking Marquette Up

Marquette is perennially good, and more than treads water in the Big East, which is not bad for the supposedly under-budget school compared to some of the other Big East powers.

But this year is a bit different. The team went into the week ranked tenth, and eighth in the RPI polls. The team is now 13-3 in conference play, good for second in the Big East. Under Buzz’s guidance, this team is showing that they’re not only good, but perhaps Final Four good.

And what to read into Williams suspending three of his best players for the first half? Well, simply it’s because he cares, just as Al McGuire did in the day.

The unique tradition of Marquette continues. Rick Majerus got his start as a member of Al McGuire’s staff. Kevin O’Neill righted the program during the 1990’s before jumping around to other various jobs on the collegiate and professional front. Finally the more buttoned-down Tom Crean arrived.

As good as Crean was, Buzz Williams truly emphasizes the tradition and enthusiasm of Marquette basketball, the school nestled on the edge of downtown Milwaukee that theoretically isn’t even supposed to keep up in-state with the University of Wisconsin, never mind some of the other storied programs in the Big East and other power conferences.

Buzz likes things that way, and look for him to continue to walk it out…

*****



About Kurt Allen

Have written/blogged about sports since 2000, along with starting my popular Twitter feed in 2009. I also closely follow fantasy sports developments, along with events such as the NFL Draft.

Comments

  1. Kurt — I agree Buzz Williams has done a very nice job with the Marquette program (although a decent run in the big March tourney would be better validation.)  However, were you really serious when you said, “West Virginia is leaving the Big East for whatever is left of the Big XII.”  Seriously?  So, the Big East will be losing WVU, Pitt, Syracuse (more than likely UConn to ACC) in the future and I guess the BE won’t miss a beat?  Good luck to the Big East when they are relying on Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall, St. Johns and Georgetown for basketball.  Louisville is leaving very soon as well (probably to the Big XII.)  Meanwhile, “what’s left of the Big XII” is just a few little schools like, Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, Texas Tech, K-State, etc.  Sorry, when I read that, I just had to laugh.

  2. [url=http://stratteraonline.eu/]strattera online[/url] [url=http://bupropion-sr-150-mg.webcam/]bupropion sr 150 mg tablet[/url] [url=http://hoodia.top/]hoodia[/url] [url=http://seroquel-generic.gdn/]generic for seroquel[/url] [url=http://buytulasi.trade/]tulasi[/url] [url=http://ciprofloxacinhcl500mg.bid/]cipro prescription[/url]

  3. [url=http://augmentin-generic.party/]augmentin[/url] [url=http://buy-cytotec.link/]buy cytotec[/url] [url=http://synthroid.pro/]buy generic synthroid[/url] [url=http://antabuse.stream/]antabuse[/url] [url=http://prozacgeneric.xyz/]prozac generic[/url]

  4. I completely agree with your opinion on this topic and look forward to additional posts and comments here at midwestsportsfans.com. Thanks!

  5. Awsome website! I am loving it!! Will be back later to read some more.
    I am taking your feeds also

  6. I’m gone to convey my little brother, that he should also go to see this website on regular basis to take updated from hottest gossip.

  7. 9/10/2016 I’m pleased with the way that midwestsportsfans.com covers this type of issue! Generally on point, often polemic, always well-researched and more often than not quite thought-provoking.

  8. Quite a good read. I just passed this on 9/11/2016 to a coworker who has been involved in a little research of her own on this topic. To say thanks, they just bought me a drink! So, I should probably say: Thank you for the drink!

  9. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually recognise what you’re speaking about!

    Bookmarked. Please additionally consult with my website =).
    We can have a hyperlink alternate agreement between us

  10. 9/15/2016 @ 15:44:06 Like the site– very easy to navigate and a lot of stuff to consider!

  11. [url=http://prozac.tech/]order prozac online[/url] [url=http://trazodonehcl.bid/]trazodone 25 mg[/url] [url=http://buy-nexium.stream/]nexium[/url]

  12. 10/2/2016 @ 22:45:33 In my opinion, midwestsportsfans.com does a great job of handling subject matter of this kind! Even if sometimes deliberately contentious, the posts are more often than not well-written and challenging.

  13. Love midwestsportsfans.com– very easy to navigate and lots to think about!

  14. In my estimation, midwestsportsfans.com does a excellent job of covering issues of this kind. While sometimes intentionally controversial, the information is generally thoughtful and challenging.

  15. I completely agree with your take on this topic and look forward to upcoming posts and comments here at midwestsportsfans.com. Keep up the good work!

  16. midwestsportsfans.com does it yet again! Very informative site and a well-written article. Thanks!

  17. Like the site– very user-friendly and lots to explore!

  18. I generally agree with your opinion on this topic and look forward to additional posts and comments here at midwestsportsfans.com. Keep up the good work!

  19. 11/7/2016 @ 11:48:11 Love the website– extremely easy to navigate and a lot of stuff to think about!

  20. I’m pleased by the manner in which midwestsportsfans.com covers this kind of subject. Generally on point, sometimes contentious, consistently well-written and also stimulating.

  21. Wonderful work! That may be the type of info that are designed to be shared round the web.
    Shame on Google for now not positioning this submit upper!
    Occur over and seek advice from my website .
    Thanks =)

  22. 11/23/2016 midwestsportsfans.com does it again! Very interesting site and a good post. Nice work!

  23. Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme on this site.

    It’s simple, yet effective. Lots of times it’s tough to acquire that
    “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual
    appearance. I have to admit that you’ve done a amazing job
    with this. Additionally, the blog loads very quick to me on Internet explorer.

    Superb Blog!

  24. Kudos for the noteworthy website you’ve created at midwestsportsfans.com. Your enthusiastic take on the subject is definitely contagious. Thanks again!

  25. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew
    of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest
    twitter updates. I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time
    and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this.

    Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your
    blog and I look forward to your new updates.

  26. You actually help it become seem quite simple with the presentation but I to find this topic to
    become actually one important thing that I think I might
    in no way understand. It appears too complex and very extensive for me personally.
    I am just having a look forward for your subsequent post, I am going
    to try and have the cling from it!

  27. I’m extremely pleased to discover this web site. I wish to to thanks for ones time for this particularly wonderful read!!
    I definitely appreciated every tiny amount of it and
    i also perhaps you have saved to fav to look at new stuff with
    your internet site.

  28. Great work! Which is the type of information that are supposed to be shared over the internet.
    Shame on the seek engines for not any longer positioning this publish upper!
    Occur over and discuss with my site . Thanks =)

  29. It’s a shame you don’t possess a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this brilliant blog!

    I suppose right now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your Feed
    to my Google account. I look forward to brand-new updates and may share this blog with my Facebook group.
    Talk soon!

  30. obviously like your website however you have to check the
    spelling on several of your own posts. Many turn out to be
    rife with spelling issues and so i to find it very bothersome to tell the veracity
    however I’ll certainly come again again.

  31. What’s up to all, how is everything, I think every one
    is getting more from this web page, and your views are nice in favor of new viewers.

Speak Your Mind