This may or may not be my last column for The Daily. I may be writing one next week for the Dead Week issue, and I am co-terming next year, so maybe I will write then, but just in case, I’m going to write this pseudo-farewell column recapping my favorite sports moments at Stanford.
I’ll start with my freshman year. The football season was entirely forgettable (1-11, with he-who-should-not-be-named as our coach before Jim Harbaugh took over), so I’ll start with the basketball season. Back then, the Sixth Man Club was actually respectable, and my friends and I would camp outside Maples Pavilion for some of the big games.
UCLA was ranked No. 2 in the country when it came to visit, so about 10 of us from Larkin camped out. The game was packed – two people standing to a row in the student section – but Stanford was getting blown out in the first half. Then Kenny Brown hit a three-pointer to pull Stanford within 12 at halftime. Later, Anthony Goods and Lawrence Hill would put on a three-point display to lead the Cardinal to victory, ending with everyone storming the court.
I’m no Stanford basketball scholar, but that was probably the most exciting home win since 2004, when Stanford remained undefeated by beating Arizona on Nick Robinson’s running three-pointer at the buzzer.
Then there was my sophomore year. The football season saw an improvement (4-8), but by no means did I expect Stanford to beat USC. Nonetheless, I road-tripped to the game with some friends, and the rest is history. Four second-half interceptions by John David Booty, Tavita Pritchard to Mark Bradford and it was sheer euphoria. A Big Game victory a few weeks later topped it all off.
Then there was the men’s basketball NCAA Tournament. Second round, Stanford versus Marquette, Brook Lopez at the overtime buzzer. If you don’t know what I’m referring to, YouTube it.
Later my sophomore year, Stanford baseball hosted No. 1 Arizona State and its completely crazy head coach Pat Murphy. Stanford took two of three, including a trouncing on Saturday, when Murphy decided to engage with the crowd. It was that weekend that Stanford announced itself on the national stage as a team that could make the College World Series.
Lo and behold, Stanford made it to the College World Series that year, and I went. There is probably no better sporting event than the College World Series. Great tailgating, nice people, wonderful nightlife – and baseball. Stanford played the first game of the series and scored 11 runs in the top of the ninth to beat Florida State 16-5.
The Cardinal didn’t win the College World Series, but the experience was amazing.
Then there was this football season. I could probably put five games on this list because this year was a great success, but the two victories that come to mind are the win over Oregon and the trouncing of USC at the Coliseum.
The packed stadium wasn’t expecting victory over Oregon. The USC victory, on the other hand, was epic. Watching those lukewarm Trojan fans clear out of the stadium like the building was on fire early in the fourth quarter was great. The only thing better might have been the looks on the fans’ faces two years earlier when it was No. 1 USC losing at home to lowly Stanford.
I’m probably missing a few things here and there. I was out of town, but I’m sure the men’s volleyball national title game a few weeks ago was extremely exciting, for example. I definitely missed some huge goals, walk-off homers and more, but for me these moments were the cream of the crop.
It’s been a fun ride, and hopefully the Stanford teams that are still playing this spring will provide me with some more lasting memories.
Daniel Bohm likes to roadtrip to Stanford sports games, if you haven’t heard. Join him next year at email@example.com.