There are a variety of sports that I enjoy watching. A few favorites are Snowboarding, College Basketball, and Soccer. The sport that grabs my attention most is College Basketball. Growing up in Central New York, the hometown team to root for was Syracuse Basketball. Syracuse Basketball has become a ritual for most. It does not matter who the person is, or where the person comes from. The minute a person steps foot inside the Carrier Dome, everyone shares the same feelings. To be as loud as can be, and to watch the Orange win. For those 40 minutes of playing time, nothing else seemed to matter. I have become a diehard fan of the Orange because of Jim Boeheim, the Carrier Dome and the players of Past and Present.
Jim Boeheim is the current head coach of the men’s basketball team at the University of Syracuse. Coach Boeheim has been a long-standing part of the basketball program ever since he was a student in 1962. (Bonesteel, 3). As Matt Bonesteel, from the Washington Post stated, “He has been the embodiment of Orange Pride” (3). Boeheim has led his team to ten Big East conference championships, five Big East Tournaments Championships, and thirty-two NCAA Tournament appearances. Coach Jim Boeheim has turned what once was a mediocre basketball program, into what is now a nation-wide powerhouse (Bonesteel, 8). He does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
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The Carrier Dome is the facility that hosts a wide variety of events. The Dome’s most popular event is the Syracuse Universities Men’s Basketball Team. It is the only domed stadium in the Northeast. It is the largest of its kind on a college campus. The Carrier Dome has become the center of sports fandom at Syracuse University (Ajisaka, 2). It is a place where 49,250 thousand people can come together during the brutal winters of Central New York. A place where those same people have the same things in common, watching Syracuse win (Ajisaka, 23). Watching Syracuse play in the Dome has become one of the greatest experiences that I myself have had the chance to partake in. They do not call it the “Loud-House” for nothing.
There have been many great players that have come and gone throughout the years. Greats like Carmelo Anthony, Gerry McNamara and Pearl Washington. Seeing these guys play on television is one thing, but to experience that greatness first hand while inside the Dome is something completely different. The Orange know how to come together when times are tough. With setbacks, like losing a coach to suspension, and a rough overall season, the players always seem to find a way to pull together to prove that they deserve to included (Waldstein, 10). The players make it worthwhile to be a fan. When watching them, there really is no telling what is going to happen. Waldstein stated “When Syracuse was slotted into the N.C.A.A. tournament as the number 10 seed in the Midwest Region, there were many complaints that the Orange should have never been invited at all” (1). It is times like those that when the team pushes through the negative energy, they can and will come out on top.
There are many sports out there that people enjoy. Basketball is my particular sport. Basketball has always been a huge part of who I am today. For some, Basketball is more than just a game. That is what Syracuse Basketball is for me. It is more than just a game. It is a place where a stranger can become a friend. It is where rivalries are made. For me, being in that Carrier Dome amongst the “Sea of Orange”, watching the players play, Jim Boeheim yelling at the referees, and listening to the fans cheer. It is like being in a whole other world.