Topic No. 2 that I can't stand hearing from fans: How Big East officials are going to screw West Virginia's basketball team every chance they get because the school is leaving for the Big 12.
Shut up, shut up, shut up, SHUT UP!
Let me make this as quick and simple as possible. There is no such thing as a Big East basketball official. The officials who work Big East games are independent contractors, if you will. The Big East gets the best ones possible. So does the ACC and the SEC and the Big Ten and the Big 12.
And more often than not, they are the same guys.
Take Joe Lindsay, Pat Driscoll and Mike Roberts, for example. They worked the WVU-UConn game on Monday. Lindsay's game before that was in the SEC and before that the ACC. Since the first of the year, Driscoll has worked games in the Big East, Big Ten, ACC and the MAAC. And Roberts, since Dec. 31, has worked at venues in the Big East, ACC, SEC, Atlantic 10 and Horizon.
(By the way, officials working too many games is another issue, but that isn't the topic today.)
The point, though, is that if you insist on maintaining that every time a call goes against West Virginia it's because of some vast Big East conspiracy, you're just showing your ignorance. So save yourself and don't do it.
And finally, back to Nessler. You'll recall he was the ESPN guy who, during the Sugar Bowl telecast featuring Virginia Tech and Michigan, noted during a promo that "another team from the state of Virginia'' would be playing the following night against Clemson in the Orange Bowl.
Anyway, Monday night I pull into a parking garage near the XL Center in Hartford, Conn., and the attendant asks me if I'm there for the basketball game between Connecticut and West Virginia. I said yes and he charged me the flat $10 event-parking fee. I didn't think anything about it until he gave me the ticket stub and said, 'Yeah, I thought so. I saw the license plate.''
Now, mind you, I'm driving a rental car and I have no idea what kind of plates are on it. Suffice it to say, though, I drive probably 20 or 30 different rentals every year and I doubt I've ever had one with West Virginia plates.
So when I parked and got out I looked. Not this time, either.
They were Virginia plates.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com.