Wednesday, March 18, 2009

You can give it everything and still lose, yet it's still worth it

Mike Montgomery is in his first season as head coach at Cal but he "guided Stanford to 12 NCAA appearances including the 1998 Final Four."

To get his Cal players excited about the tourney, "after the team's regular season had concluded at Arizona State, Montgomery assembled his players. He showed them a video about the NCAA tournament, featuring big moments and big plays. Montgomery then spoke of his own March Madness experiences to a locker room in which 10 of the 15 players had never been on the court in an NCAA game."

"I told them," Montgomery said, "how they don't understand how hard it is to win in the tournament, how they don't have any idea yet how big a deal this is. It's something you'll look back on and you need to cherish it. I talked to them about the heartbreak that can happen when you give it everything and sell your souls out and still lose — but how it's all worth it."

"He got a little emotional about it,'' point guard Jerome Randle said. "He was talking about the memories you can have, about how once you get there, anything can happen. It's a serious deal for him."