— Daniel Gotera (@DTGoteraKHOU) April 5, 2016
There is no other way to describe the video above other than the weirdest, most uncomfortable tradition very few knew about until right now.
Jim Nantz (a.k.a. Not Verne Lundquist) has announced 26 Final Fours and, at some point along the way, decided to give his tie to a senior on the winning team that inspired him or played well or what in the world is happening here? THIS IS WEIRD. The act of giving Villanova’s Ryan Arcidiacono a tie alone is weird, but so is the speech.
“It symbolizes a lot to me. My father taught me to tie a tie.”
What?! So are you a surrogate father in this scenario? In his mind, Nantz is giving the player, “something to take home.” Yeah, it’s what every senior on every basketball team dreams about; taking home a tie from a guy who called the game, not a piece of the net you cut down or a championship t-shirt, or a team picture, or a — my word why is Nantz doing this?
And poor Arcidiacono had to wear this thing the rest of the night.
You know who else thinks a ceremony where a 56-year-old man gives another man in his early-20s a tie on camera? This woman who watched in horror as it all unfolded in front of her:
The look you had on your face as you watched the video? That’s her. She is all of us.
Look at her disgust. Look at it!
She is embarrassed for everyone involved and just needs to get out of there. How can anyone blame her? At some point, Nantz was covering a Final Four, saw players celebrating a championship after one of his corny canned calls and wondered, “How can I make the celebration and aftermath about me?” Ties. That’s what he came up with.
This is yet another reason Lundquist needs to call Final Fours with Bill Raftery. You know what they would have given Arcidiacono? Nothing! They would have been at a bar by this point.
Giving a college basketball player a tie is LITERALLY a tradition unlike any other.