BEAVERCREEK (OH) -- Back in the early '80s there was an ad campaign for the very addictive ice cream confection known as Klondike Bars that posed the question:
"What would you do for a Klondike Bar?"
Some of the answers were:
"Act like a Chicken?":
"Sing I'm a Little Teapot?":
And the ever-popular "Put away dirty dishes?":
To rephrase the question for this column's' purposes:
"What would motivate you to get in your car and drive 3 1/2 hours one way?"
On Sunday the answer, at least for me, was:
"To play in the First UD Twitter Pickup Basketball Showcase Spectacular."
Held at the McAfee Sports Center in Beavercreek, the FUTPBSS was the brainchild of David Jablonski who covers the Red & Blue for The Dayton Daily News.
He decided to put out an invitation to some of his more ardent Twitter followers to get to know each other and to get some burn on the hardwood.
First a word about the facilities. McAfee Sports Center was actually David's 3rd option. Initially it was going to take place at Oakwood HS. That fell thru. Next at the Rec Plex. The U didn't want to assume the liabilty. Can you blame them? I pulled up at about 4:45 and there was exactly one car in the lot. I went to the front door and amazingly it was open. It seems McAfee is basically still under construction, but the basketball court was ready for action and the floor was one of the best I have ever played on. I asked Tom our host and he said it was comprised of a layer of plywood subflooring laid in one direction; a layer of 3/8" thick padding; another course of plywood going in the opposite direction and finally a beautiful pine floor that had a nice cushiony bounce to it.
The 12 attendees:
And their Twitter handles:
David Jablonski: https://twitter.com/DavidPJablonski
John Bedell, host of Flyer Feedback
Matt Allaire of Flyer Faithful
Grant Kelly writer for A-10 Talk: https://twitter.com/GrantKelly07
Tom Hirt: https://twitter.com/FLYRFN
Eric Heinrich: https://twitter.com/eric_heinrich
Joe Eckley: https://twitter.com/gdowgger
Alex Mikos, PBP guy for UD Women's Hoops: https://twitter.com/Alex_Mikos
Mike Hart: https://twitter.com/MrH42
Frank Hiti: https://twitter.com/FrankHiti10
Andy Wendeln: https://twitter.com/schmendeln
You'll note that everyone else has a Twitter account except yours truly. Just call me old school, altho I do occasionally check out David's Twitter feed to see what he has written about the Flyers. That's how I found out that he was planning the FUTPBSS and was able to get in of the action.
Grant Kelly (still in HS) and Matt Allaire (still in college) tended to dominate the action, but everyone present had a "one shining moment" or two of their own. In between games, Matt was attempting half court shots and actually made one that no one there had ever seen before. His attempt hit the rim; bounced high in the air; hit the top of the backboard; bounced off the floor and swished. Unfortunately, no one caught it on video.
Believe it or don't but 25 people were for some reason viewing this thing live on Periscope, in all its turnover-prone glory. If you are a real glutton for punishment, you can actually watch the proceedings yourself!
And here: https://www.periscope.tv/DavidPJablo...O?autoplay&t=8
If you don't have the time or the stomach for that, David has assembeld a photo album here:
After two hours of sweating we decided to call it a day. It was a great venue, featured some spirited play by a good bunch of Flyer fanatics and best of all, nobody got hurt.
That’s it “From the Swamp.”
You can email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org