It was the biggest home game of the year. The Huskers men’s basketball team was taking on the fourth-ranked Maryland Terrapins at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Everyone was excited—especially me. Why? Because I had unfinished business with Melo Trimble.
Flashback to the Maryland game last year where I stood directly next to the Terrapins as they warmed up. I found the star then-freshman player to be the easy target of heckling. Everything from making jokes about what he was doing to picking on him as a person “The higher the hair the closer to God, am I right, Melo?” He was continually rolling his eyes at me as the stupid jokes kept coming out. Naturally, I was loving every second of it.
This year, however, he came in to PBA with an attitude that showed that he wasn’t about to listen to anyone yelling at him. But I was ready, I had done my research. It was only just beginning.
A thirty second Google search showed me that it was 21st birthday the day before, so a few of us had the brilliant idea to start yell-singing Happy Birthday to him every time he tried to do… Well… Anything. While unfazed during warm ups, it proved to be effective during free-throws (until the very end… Spoiler Alert!), in which he missed every one that we sang during.
The only time he paid any attention to us this year was when I was joined by my good friend Ndamukong Stoos (aka Caitlin Stoos but I like my nickname for her more) in doing Maryland’s warmups with them. To be honest, we looked like complete idiots stretching and running around in the aisle, but as long as it made Trimble look over, it was worth it.
You could tell how much this game meant to Husker fans as it was completely deafening at tipoff. The energy and volume stayed high throughout the game, including when my roommate turned to me to say “gosh, I always forget how loud your voice can get.” Shoutout to my many years of theatre and broadcasting for that one.
The Huskers were able to keep up score-wise with Maryland throughout the entire game, but several missed opportunities caused the Huskers some trouble. But even though the Huskers had a difficult time capitalizing on turnovers and were shooting just 31.8 percent, it was still honestly a fun game to watch. Stressful, but fun.
You could tell how stressed I was watching the game solely by the foam finger I was holding throughout. Since I’m such a fidgeter, anything handed to me during a game that can be destroyed will be. By the end of the game, the foam finger didn’t even have a finger anymore, nor was it usable. Whoops.
Also probably doesn’t look good on me considering that they were given to us by my employer—Big Ten Network. Sorry guys.
The Huskers fell 70-65 to the Terrapins, but will be hosting Rutgers at home next. Honestly, if we lose to a team that has as many conference wins this season as I personally do, I’ll be concerned. Guess we’ll all just have to wait and see.