Satire: AU men’s basketball team reflects on virtual start to season
‘When I saw an opportunity to pass, I lobbed the ball at my screen with total confidence’
The following piece is satire and should not be misconstrued for actual reporting. Any resemblance to a student, staff or faculty member is coincidental.
After a virtual start to their season, the American University men’s basketball team could not be more excited about returning to in-person competition.
While various programs adapted to the unexpected modality, the basketball team faced unique obstacles only an athlete could understand.
Coach Kevin Ramos lamented the struggles of moving a sport that requires team coordination, 10-foot hoops and a full-sized basketball court online.
“We all knew it would be difficult to run passing drills over Zoom,” Ramos said. “But I don’t think any of us anticipated the devastating homeware casualties.”
“Coach Ramos told us to ‘pretend like we’re on the court,’ even during virtual practices,” sophomore point guard Justin Price said. “I really took that to heart. I lobbed the ball at my screen with total confidence when I saw an opportunity to pass. Unfortunately, my teammate did not receive the pass, and my laptop was smashed to pieces. Coach commended my hustle, though.”
Ramos was not heavy-handed with the commendations. One student, senior shooting guard Hector Cortes, remembered one moment when Coach Ramos tried to sub him out for a stronger player.
“I’m a senior and I’ve never played before,” Cortes said. “I thought this season was going to be my time to shine. Instead, Coach tried to sub me out after a minute and a half, but let’s just say I wasn’t willing to give up that easily. I refused to turn my camera off, leaving my microphone unmuted. I expertly executed my plan — that is until the referee, who was also the Zoom host, manually muted me and turned my camera off. I have never been more humiliated in my life.”
When asked why he felt the need to substitute the hopeful Cortes for another player, Ramos said that playing junior Arjun Mehta was necessary to secure the “dub.”
“Arjun is so enthusiastic,” Ramos said. “While Hector tries to be a team player, Arjun is willing to destroy all of his grandmother’s china if it means a clear shot.”
Mehta confirmed his enthusiasm.
“At first, I was upset that I had to play from the living room in my childhood home, but then I started to seize opportunities to ‘accidentally’ destroy ugly and embarrassing childhood pictures of myself. I shattered six baby photos during one game and my high school graduation photo. The ceiling fan was just collateral, though I do think the room looks better without it.”
Despite the casualties, Coach Ramos said that the month of January was the most successful in AU men’s basketball history.
“We win every game,” he said. “Our players are committed to adapting to the virtual format, and I couldn’t be more proud of them.”
Ramos said he has mixed emotions as he returns to in-person training..
“I’ll miss coaching in my pajamas, but I’m excited to see what this team will do next,” Ramos said.
Despite the difficulties, some team members put virtual playing into perspective.
“This season was really hard,” small forward Anthony McCabe said. “But at least it wasn’t as bad as my roommate Jeffrey trying to do competitive diving in the bathtub.”
Nora Sullivan is a junior in the School of International Service and a satire columnist at The Eagle.