‘TOMORROW IS OUR FIRST GAME’ — entry #1 from “A history of the events of the Allentown College’s 1972-1973 B-Ball season, as chronicled by, and with the personal memoirs + occassional philosophizing of the author, one Stephen J. McKee…”
Posted on Nov 30, 2012
WRITTEN THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 1972 Tomorrow is our first game – Lehigh County Community College – first of 17. We’ve practiced for six weeks now, having started on October 16. We have never beaten this team. We will tomorrow. Sounds like perfect jock talk, doesn’t it? Well, I think we will. We should. They’re a [...]Read more...
“A HISTORY OF THE EVENTS OF THE ALLENTOWN COLLEGE’S 1972-1973 B-BALL SEASON, AS CHRONICLED BY, AND WITH THE PERSONAL MEMOIRS + OCCASSIONAL PHILOSOPHIZING OF THE AUTHOR, ONE STEPHEN J. McKEE”
Posted on Nov 30, 2012
JUNIOR YEAR at Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales I kept a detailed diary of the entire 1972-1973 Centaur season. [SEE TITLE ABOVE.] One-hundred-and-forty-six bus-bounced, hand-scratched pages in a reddish-brown Royal Composition notebook. A blog before its time. Starting later today, November 30, 2012, CENTAUR SEASONS will post these entries in real time, all [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 29, 2012
Sophomore year we Centaurs weren’t half bad. In fact, with an 8-and-8 record we were actually half good. Eight and eight! A .500 season! A non-losing slate! After three years and a combined 15-41, eight-and-eight deserved every exclamation point it could muster. Indeed, while this record would be matched once, it wouldn’t be surpassed for [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 27, 2012
Sophomore year. New season. New coach. New promise. New purpose. We only had five guys, fellas … He pressed us the whole way, fellas … Subbed five at a time, fellas … AND HE STILL ONLY BEAT US BY ONE, FELLAS! Preseason started on October 15. From the start that’s what our new coach, Jack [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 26, 2012
Every September, back at school, it was all brand new again. Everything. Even as part of being there was a return to the old and familiar. One of my first rituals was to get myself to Billera Hall. To smell the place again, to stand in the lobby again, to peer out at the court again. [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 21, 2012
Here’s how long ago these Centaur Seasons were. I used to hitchhike back and forth to school. Who hitchhikes anymore, I mean, besides stupid teenagers in bad horror movies? Just one of a few thoughts here on the day before Thanksgiving. It was 111 miles from the driveway of my house in York, Pennsylvania, to the dorm [...]Read more...
AT THE END OF THE BENCH: What a Centaur-Turned-Coach Learned at Allentown and Shares with UCLA Coach John Wooden
Posted on Nov 19, 2012
This CENTAUR SEASONS post isn’t meant to embarrass Tom Shirley. I suspect it might. Tom was a four-year Centaur, two years behind me. He didn’t play much. “I went to Allentown thinking I’d play a lot,” he told me. “I guess I assumed that because it was a small school that they stunk, and of course [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 16, 2012
When last we saw the Centaurs on this multipart Move the Bus Metaphor, they had slowly rolled from Center Valley, Pennsylvania, to Cape May, New Jersey, in an old yellow school bus painted blue and red, for an away game against Shelton College. They’d arrived only minutes before tipoff, played (and won!) the game, then [...]Read more...
Posted on Nov 14, 2012
[[TO GO DIRECTLY TO THE EXCLUSIVE JOHN WOODEN INTERVIEW ON CENTAUR SEASONS, CLICK HERE]] Recently, with the current college basketball season tipping off, UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion was rededicated following a major renovation. Opened originally for the 1965-’66 season, Pauley was in its earliest years famously home to John Wooden and his UCLA Bruins, who had [...]Read more...
Welcome to CENTAUR SEASONS: A ‘memory blog’ of the basketball beginnings of a half-good, half-bad, all-new college team.
Once, I was a Centaur.
I played basketball for Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales in Center Valley, Pa. I was on four of the school’s first seven teams, was MVP senior year and in 1974 graduated in the fifth class.
My junior year I kept a diary: A History of the Events of the 1972-1973 Allentown College B-Ball Season, as Chronicled by, and With the Personal Memoirs + Occassional [sic] Philosophizing of the Author, One Stephen J. McKee. One-hundred-forty-five hand-writ pages. (Yes, I was an English major.)
But it occurs to me now: Were I today a “Bulldog” playing for “DeSales University” (both mascot and name changed in 2000), my private “History” would be not a diary but a blog.
So starting November 30 “…Personal Memoirs…” will be re-imagined as CENTAUR SEASONS
A blog before its time, posted 40 years after in real time.
Meanwhile, beginning on September 24, here at CENTAUR SEASONS the preseason has already tipped off, with stories, interviews and reminiscences of the people, the place and the purpose of those early years of Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales.
Check back often. Sign up for CentaurSeasonAlerts. Email CENTAUR SEASONS to friends.
We were not a bad team, we Centaurs. We just weren’t very good. Winning was always the goal, if never exactly the point. How could it be, with victories so few?
Back then Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales was a couple of buildings in some cornfields. Our commitment to the school’s basketball program was far greater than was the school’s commitment us. So what? We got to play college ball – and paid for the privilege! In return, we got to be part of a team, wear the red and blue, be Centaurs. And we got to create a place that was, right then, as much concept as it was college, making itself up as we went along.
What we got was a once-in-a-life-time chance.
All we had to do was keep showing up -- next practice, next game, next season. And so we did.
Welcome to CENTAUR SEASONS.×