Putting "The Shuffle" To Sleep

The SIU men's basketball team beat Bradley Sunday night by a score of 68-62. The Salukis held a 21-point lead with 14:32 left in the game before the Braves chipped away, cutting the lead to four with only seven seconds left.

Sure, it would have been nice to beat BU to a pulp in exchange for the whooping they put on SIU in December, but a win is a win is a win. Doesn't matter how it happens, it just needs to happen.

And with the win, we can finally put to rest the drama produced with the MVC Shuffle.

You know, the YouTube video made famous by Deadspin which in turn I made more famous with this blog.

I asked a couple of SIU players and head coach Chris Lowery about the videos, and if you didn't catch the last blog about this, allow me to catch you up:
  • Redshirt freshman center Nick Evans said he was pretty sure the whole team saw it and they didn't take it too lightly.
  • Lowery said he didn't want to comment about a situation involving student-athletes he didn't coach, but when asked how he would react if Saluki student-athletes did a video of that nature he simply said "they wouldn't."
Neither of those statements is shocking to this Saluki fan/beat writer. SIU has carried its program with class since I stepped foot on campus in Fall 2004. Coincidentally, it is the same time C-Lo took the reigns of the Saluki hoops program from Matt Painter.

Internal problems were handled, well, internally. And as SIU racked up Valley titles, you didn't hear a peep out of the players. From Brooks and Hairston to Tatum and Young, the formula for success was simple. Practice hard. Play harder. Win games.

And, please, don't get it twisted. I enjoy a confident team. I appreciate when a team feels as if it is on the brink of something special.

However, as a fan (and as a "public media figure" as some would call me) I just can't praise a self-coronation video from a team that hasn't done anything since Patrick O'Bryant had one really good year to spark the Braves to a Sweet Sixteen bid.

So while the MVC Shuffle could have been made before the season and done for charitable purposes, why was that announced to the public after it had become a national punchline.

Sounds like damage control to me.

Even if it isn't, the video still kinda sucked. Maybe they will learn the finer points of collegiate rappers from current Chicago Bears tight end Greg "G-Reg" Olson.

R.I.P. Bradley "MVC Shuffle"
Early January 2009 - Mid January 2009