Friday, March 19, 2010

Cloud Nine

Ever wonder the origins of some of our common expressions?

Take, for example, the famous ninth cloud, a place we like to find ourselves. Why is cloud nine so desirable? According to the wiktionary, the 1896 edition of The International Cloud Atlas defined 10 types of clouds. The ninth cloud was the cumulonimbus, which rises to 10km making it the highest of the clouds.

I had a pretty good view from a cumulonimbus yesterday during the 12-hour orgy of college basketball yesterday, better known as the first day of the first round of the NCAA tournament. DeVaughn Washington, (in the picture below) also got a pretty good view from a cumulonimbus when he skied high on this alley-oop, fastbreak dunk in the second half last night.

There were great games with great finishes and four overtime periods, but the climax for me (pun intended) was watching the University of Kentucky pound their first round opponent, East Tennessee State by 30 points most of the game (100-71 final) at the same time that Ohio University kept Georgetown pinned to the ground for 40 minutes to win 97-83.

Let me re-iterate. Ohio University, the 14th seed in the Midwest/St. Louis bracket, who was 22-14, beat a third-seeded Georgetown team that beat Duke, Syracuse, Villanova and Pittsburgh, among other highly rated teams. Georgetown was ranked 14th and 15th out of 330-something teams in the AP and Coaches' polls, respectively, as recently as Monday. In the RPI, which is a computer-mathematics-based rankings, Georgetown was 7th; Ohio was 94th.

On second thought, maybe the cumulonimbus isn't high enough in the sky.

Watching this game, I ascended to the lesser known 13th cloud, the trifectus-nimbus. Ohio knocked down 13 three-point shots on only 23 shots hitting an absurd 56.5% of them.

Just a notch higher is the 14th cloud, the victorious stratus. Not only was Ohio the 14th seed, but they poured on 97 points for a 14 point victory. That set a new record for the largest margin of victory by a team with a seeding of 14 or higher. No other team in this category ever scored a double-digit win.

Still higher, and as of today the pinnacle cloud, is the 32nd cloud, the advancitous cumulonimbus. Ohio's star guard, Armon Bassett (that link takes you to Sunday's posting which has a picture of Bassett dunking in the MAC championship game), tallied 32 points, and as a result, Ohio advances to the second round, the round of 32, on Saturday against Tennessee. Then we'll see if I can get lost even higher in the clouds.

1 comment:

  1. It's Friday, and that means that the Fifth Weekly State Department Blog Roundup is up - and you're on it!

    Here is the link:

    http://bit.ly/avMY9E

    (If I quoted your text or used your photo(s) and you would rather I had not, please let me know. Please also be sure to check the link(s) that I put up to you, in order to verify that they work properly. If you would rather that I had not referenced you, and/or do not want me to reference you in the future, please also contact me.)

    Thanks!

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