From Alma Mater Vol. 4: The South (Just Released)
The wait is over. It is time for millions to relive glory days through history fathered anew. Where every generation can at last come together and predict the future. They’ll laugh together when they are wrong. Yell triumphantly when proven right with a Big Dance of vindication. They’ll travel back to where it began—sheltered in the stands, or stay under the roof their Alma Mater they cheer for—paid for. Wherever they are, they are right back home. Where the oath of remembrance is renewed by the large dose of annual adrenaline that drives to the courts and decorates the front porch with banners, memorabilia, and the picture of Spirit Restored. The negativity of the 9 to 5 converts to the two hours where suddenly everyone becomes positive. It’s the time when fair-weather fans become hardcore. When believers call down a miracle and bodies pay the toll to pass through time. Behind all the alluring advertisements are legions who’ve already bought in. Entire towns that have lapsed into Madness…and it’s chased by the eager into packed arenas…
When everyone is on this run that can’t be stopped, what results is a remarkable rally.
Where everyone becomes immune to the doubts and the nine days’ wonders exist to beat them. It is when the final story breaks, and the streets feel the ramifications of an elation flooded. Each of the 68 teams is hit with an attack of pride from every side. Hence, the question first posed isn’t “Who is the best?” It is “Who can survive the onslaught?”
There’s a school in Chapel Hill with outlaws who rise up and holler as the shots are fired. Students who put in the work so for the next few weeks they can watch the boys play. A school that always finds itself in the center of the chaos, but not the Madness, because our fanatics have something that most others lack:
When the lunacy is at its peak and the survivors are down to the Final Four, the Tar Heels have managed to make it to this point more than any other crowd. Watch as we point to five banners, for there is no need to search for our motive. Listen up & Look up:
We can’t speak to why you’re lost in the Madness, but
This is our Reason.
We’ve watched the completion of McGuire’s Miracle as Joe Quigg downed the game-winning free throws to give us the perfect season and our first championship.
We watched Tar Heels refuse to give Michigan a timeout…and keep on pressing until we claimed another title.
We watched the slams of Stackhouse and Carter, and a young forward who dreamed of being a champion keep working to become Worthy.
We watched Sean May’s double-double performance leading UNC to its 4th championship.
We watched Tyler’s collegiate career come to a fitting end as Ellington led the team to the top prize in 2009.
We watched Dean Smith win his first NCAA Championship in his twentieth season as we watched Michael hit the winning shot from the wing…way before Air Jordan was a thing.
And we watched His Airness take off as Carolina followed along to the resonating words:
And Now, From North Carolina…
Are Tar Heels who use this success of our brothers to challenge us to uphold this family’s name. Tar Heels whose parents watch their children embark for the world after academic excellence in their coursework—the ultimate payoff for a parent’s hard work.
Tar Heels who through the years have proven in the head-to-head record of sport’s greatest rivalry that even though our shade is lighter,
Carolina Blue overshadows Duke Blue.
And we constantly prove this record is not a fluke,
Every single time that we
And as the school year nears its end, and the Season of Madness is set to begin,
In every home, these shouted words blow the roof,
But our belief’s supported by the past proof:
“This is our Season.”