Brown Men’s Basketball knocks off PC…again


Alright, so this season admittedly hadn’t gotten off to a roaring start for men’s basketball. Especially questionable results included a 21-point loss to a school called Austin Peay (to be fair, they have made March Madness at some point during my lifetime) and a 17-point loss to American (who did make March Madness last year, but as a really shitty 15-seed).

None of that matters, though, because there’s only one non-conference game you should care about: the annual intra-city game against PC, which occurred last night. In this biggest of spots, against a higher-pedigree program steeped in history, Bruno–as you may have guessed from the fact that we’re running a post on the game–delivered, with a 77-67 win.

That’s right, for the second time in three years, we can say that we have the best basketball team in Providence, and no one can stop us. Hey, everyone, we have the best basketball team in Providence! Yeah, see? No one stopped me.

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An Amateur’s Guide to March Madness

March Madness is an exciting time for me–a time of blind allegiance and savvy ignorance. Everyone in my close circle either plays basketball or knows more about it than I do. The extent of my basketball experience begins and ends with the Yellow Jackets, my quite defeated 1st grade school basketball team. And my basketball fame begins and ends with that free throw I may or may not have made that one night I vaguely remember. If the past is a story we tell ourselves (thank you, Spike Jonze), I obviously recall this as a golden moment of unrealized 4 ft-high potential.

What is one to do, then, when March Madness rolls around and you feel woefully left out? I suppose one could a) not care, b) care a lot and construct a winning bracket, or c) remain suspended with me in this in-between, desiring to be accepted for the basketball fan that I truly am and yet always excluded from the party, like Benji Applebaum from Pitch Perfect who will never be a Trebblemaker (you’re too good for them, Benji!).

I’m too competitive to create a bracket that obviously won’t win, though I briefly imagine myself picking teams at random and shocking my friends. “Oh, you didn’t expect Mercer to beat Duke? I know you didn’t. Next year, though.”

Instead, I have constructed a guide for those hoping to participate but who have little basketball knowledge to go on (I studied basketball terminology, the Spurs roster, and LeBron’s stats to up my cool factor for last summer’s NBA playoffs). Here is a new way to approach how to decide on a winning team:

North Carolina or Iowa State?
Do I know what a Tar Heel is?: No vs. no
Is baby blue a masculine color?: No vs. I see you, Columbia
Who has the better smile?Bubu Palo vs. Jackson Simmons
Badass coach?: Roy Williams (UNC) or Fred Hoiberg (Iowa State)?
Winner: Iowa State
Methodology: Underdog

Wichita State or Kentucky?
Which colors do I fancy more (or less)?: Black and yellow (Wichita St.) vs. White and blue (Kentucky)
Where could I spend the day?: Wichita, KS vs. Lexington, KY
Who is taller?: Wichita’s tallest is 6-9 vs. Kentucky’s at 7-0
Winner: Kentucky
Methodology: When playing Where in the USA is Carmen Sandiego?, I told myself I would visit Kentucky one day. Lovely statehouse.

Texas or Michigan?
Location, location, location: Austin, TX vs. Ann Arbor, MI
Do I wear burnt orange well?: Maybe vs. no
Am I Austin weird?: Yes vs. I like to think so
Which coach is more intimidating?: John Beilein (Michigan) vs. Rick Barnes (Texas)
Winner: Texas
Methodology: I’m from Houston…fixed election.

Arizona or Gonzaga?
Colors: They’re both white with red and blue (NOW we have to get nitpicky)
Whose athletics page clearly employed a web designer?: Arizona vs. Gonzaga
Do I appreciate Dustin Triano‘s pseudo-mullet?: You do you, kid vs. no
Who has the better name?: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (Arizona) vs. Rem Bakamus (Gonzaga)
Winner: Gonzaga
Methodology: The mullet pulled ahead in the last second


Sixth Man: An open letter to Brown Men’s Basketball Coach Mike Martin ’94


Dear Head Coach Mike Martin ’94 and the Brown University Bears Varsity Men’s Basketball Team,

I hope this missive finds you well. I am first and foremost a fan of your team–one of a select group, really–but I am also a concerned freshman at the university you represent. You see, there are only a few things I want to come away with from my college experience: a decent education; some good memories; some means of securing steady and potentially lucrative employment; and a trip to the NCAA Divison I Men’s Basketball tournament.

Unfortunately, this latter desire seems out of reach. Reaching the NCAA tournament (aka March Madness, aka The Big Dance) requires winning the Ivy League regular-season title: the Ivy League–echoing its academically elitist, survival-of-the-fittest ethos–is the only of the 32 D-I conferences that does not hold a postseason tournament to determine its winner. Postseason tournaments reward good teams, but they also reward lucky ones. Regular-season championships only reward good teams. And as an alumnus like yourself probably knows, Coach Martin, the Brown basketball program has had trouble offering any good teams, much less consistently good teams.

Before I go any further, I want to offer the following disclaimer: I love the Brown basketball team. I attended three of the past four home games, and only missed the fourth because of an unavoidable scheduling conflict. I am possibly the only person ever to download the 790 AM Radio app in order to listen to Brown basketball games on my phone. I have used ESPN’s Gamecast feature to follow every road game of consequence. And I think, from my admittedly limited observation, that every single member of the team seems like both a good human being and a competent basketball player. I just wish this collection of good human beings and competent basketball players could provide Brown the one additional dimension it sorely lacks (besides global prestige on par with its rivals, decent weather, and a nap room). Continue Reading

Bruno Update: Bears knock off PC, face URI tomorrow


Here’s something you may have missed whilst enjoying your eggnog, Santa, and [whatever else people do for Christmas, don’t ask this Jew]. Playing Providence College at home for the first time since you were born, Brown men’s basketball pulled a shocking upset of its in-city Big East big brothers, winning 69-68 on a three-pointer from just-announced Ivy League player of the week forward Tucker Halpern with seven seconds remaining. Halpern’s trey completed a seven-point comeback in the last 43 seconds. Awesome.

OK, so this rockin’ victory happened last Friday, but give us a break (eh? break? see what I did there?), we’re on vacation. Da Bears get another crack at an in-state rival with more pedigree when they go to URI tomorrow. Ivy League play opens January 19 at Pizzitola vs. Yale. Blog will be there. Will you?

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So it begins: Blog-etology, 2012 edition

Not all of us are basketball fans, but when it comes to March, one thing rises above all the jibber-jabber of the world and stands as a glowing beacon of guestimation and lost productivity for all mankind: MARCH MADNESS. The first weekend of back-to-back-to-back-to… well, you get it… basketball has just gotten under way. Rather than discuss all the matchups (and delight in how early Harvard is going to bite the dust), we’re bringing you golden nuggets of prediction from our two literate people who occasionally browse resident experts in college basketball: Seth Kleinschmidt and Julien Ouellet. So kick back, pray for LIU-Brooklyn to pull off an upset, and get that CBS music stuck in your head.

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Bears decimate Columbia on Senior Night

The men’s basketball team tore through Columbia Saturday night, earning a 94-78 victory. The matchup marked the final home game for Bruno’s lone senior, Jean Harris ’12, who connected on the Bears’ first basket of the night and finished with 17 points. The squad was extremely efficient, shooting 57.7 percent from the field and an astounding 63.6 percent from beyond the arc. Point guard Sean McGonagill ’14 led the team with 28 points to go along with eight rebounds and eight assists.

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