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Two Wonderful Moments From Saturday

Jim Boeheim and Mark Few classed up the weekend

NCAA Basketball: Duke at Syracuse
Feb 26, 2022; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse Orange head coach Jim Boeheim (left) presents Duke Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski with a framed picture before a game at the Carrier Dome. 
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

There were two things Saturday that we really wanted to talk about and haven’t yet.

The first seems obvious: what Syracuse did to honor Mike Krzyzewski with a scholarship.

That was really very kind and, we’re sure, touching to the Krzyzewski family.

The Captain Michael Krzyzewski Award for Leadership and Civic Engagement. It will go to someone who was or is militarily affiliated and “who through their actions and aspirations embodies Coach Krzyzewski’s public and demonstrated commitment to the virtues of honor, empathy, and servant-leadership.”

That’s something that will last a long time and may take on added prestige as time goes by. A lot of schools have done some really nice things, like giving to the Emily K Center, which we’re sure Coach K really appreciated, or Tony Bennett’s kind words and thoughtful gift on behalf of Virginia (UNC’s acknowledgement was considerably, uh, less, well...less something).

We were sure being a close friend, that Jim from Syracuse would something nice for Mike from Durham but it was really above and beyond.

The other thing?

It was a moment in the Gonzaga-St. Mary’s game, in the last little bit when it was clear that Gonzaga was going to lose.

One of the St. Mary’s kids was waiting on the sideline to throw the ball in. Mark Few looked at him, smiled, and said a few words. The St. Mary’s kid smiled back and Few laughed a bit and tapped him on the chest in apparent appreciation. It was a really sweet moment and as much as we respect Few, there’s often a difference between respecting and liking someone. That moment made it impossible not to like him.

At its best, college basketball has a sense of community and it was nice to see that in both instances.