Last night marked the official start to basketball season as the second annual Hoops Madness took place in Rec Hall.
The event featured the Men and Women’s Basketball team plus Big Sean as entertainment. Both teams have increased expectations heading into the season. Coquese Washington’s squad has aspirations of a national championship while the men are looking to be more competitive in the Big Ten during Pat Chambers’ second season in charge.
The Actual Hoops Madness
Before I touch on the concert, the night could be broken down into four other main categories:
- The introduction of the teams.
- The Dunk Contest.
- The $10,ooo shot.
- Pat Chambers
The introduction of the teams was nothing too special. Each team was introduced one by one (ladies first of course) and had a little routine to perform. The real action started with the Dunk Contest.
Before the four pre-selected members of the men’s squad came out, they introduced the judges: linebacker Gerald Hodges, defensive tackle Jordan Hill, and wide receiver Allen Robinson. Not only did they have my complete interest, but then they brought out the big guy himself, Bill O’Brien. He had some very supportive remarks before the contest got underway. “We have the best coach in college basketball right now,” O’Brien said. “We need a turnout like what we have at every home football game, for every basketball game.”
The dunk contest was a bit underwhelming. Tim Frazier won it with a reverse double jam after failing to convert a 360 between the legs attempt.
Then there was the chance to win $10,ooo. It would be tough to top how this went down last year, with both Frazier and Lucas making their shots almost seamlessly.
Frazier and Lucas both missed their shots this year as well as a selected fan who was given two chances.
Pat Chambers made an appearance before the concert talking about support for both teams and having a loud student section.
Mike Wallz opened up for big Sean. While the DJ was incoherent, Wallz played some solo riffs as well as some stuff from Primary Element, including “Waddup Playa?”
He then played his new single, #OneTeam with the Chorus chanting “We Are Penn State.” The beat was great, the lyrics were cool, but then Ross Travis, the sophomore forward, came out and killed the last verse. It was fantastic.
Big Sean was up next, but just before that a video featuring a scruffy-looking Jay Bilas came on the screen. He started talking about how great of a coach Chambers is and how this year will be special.
Big Sean did not disappoint once he got started. He ran out to “I Don’t Like,” played hits like “Clique,” “Marvin Gaye,” “High”, “Gangbang”, and “I Do It,” as well as new joints from his Detroit mixtape such as like “24K” and “RWT.” While the ending collaboration of Mercy into A$$ (including Nicki’s verse) was awesome, the crowd was never more hyped than when he played the Meek mill joint “Burn.”
Overall, Hoops Madness was nothing short of a success, and I have never been more excited for a Penn State basketball season to begin.