Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ace of Knights

Dave Lanahan, a co-worker of mine at Jameson Publishing and former basketball player at Mercyhurst College, loves talking Gannon Hoops. Especially after the Knights lose. Regrettably, he was very chatty last year. So even though it's been 258 days since GU lost the Hurst, Dave was talking Gannon basketball today. He asked if I had heard about the former Gannon basketball player who was participating in the World Series of Poker. Here's a partial transcript of the ESPN broadcast that Lanahan heard:
00:40:40 And johnny lodden waiting on the turn.
00:40:47 It's an 8 of hearts.
00:40:54 The $9 million top prize is enough for him.
00:41:02 And checks it on board.
00:41:02 Berkey from los angeles.
00:41:03 Berkey played basketball at gannon university in pennsylvania.
00:41:08 The river card, 5 of diamonds.
00:41:15 Both unimpressed by the diamonds.
00:41:22 He says, I got jacks.
00:41:25 And that's a winner.

First, most of what was said there made no sense to me -- including the Gannon basketball reference. There wasn't a guy named Berkey from Los Angeles who played for the Knights. So what in the name of Mike Kopas is going on?

Thanks to the Gannon Hoops research team (that would be my wife Barbara), it appears the ESPN announcers misspoke when they said "basketball." Matt Berkey (pictured above) played baseball at Gannon, pitching from 2002-05. He's listed at #5 in Opponents Batting Average (.318) and #7 on Gannon's all-time list for best Earned Run Average (7.39). Those stats reveal how stunningly unspectacular pitching has been at Gannon over the years. (A kid with a 9.39 ERA and .350 opponents batting average is on of the school's all-time best list? Do the other guys throw underhand?)

So no ex-Gannon basketball player is raking in big money at the World Series of Poker. Nuts. I was hoping I could get familiar enough with the game to some day say with a straight face, "I want to get my money in with the worst hands, suck, and double up" and "before you can seize it, you better flop it."


  1. Jim - I literally started crying from laughing when you noted Gannon's pitching efforts of late (or lack thereof); too funny!!

    But, yes, they have been that poor. There was a pitcher just a few years ago (I'm going to guess within past 4 years) LED the team with 6 wins, a 5.5+ something ERA and an opposing batting average of something well over .500. And he made second team conference and had a "top 10" season pitching performance... If that was the case with basketball, no offense Jim, but you'd be well into the top 10 in all-time leading scorers!

    And no the other players don't throw underhand!!! Opposite armed, blindfolded and from their knees...

  2. Jim, never mind Gannon baseball and the WSOP.

    What the @#$#% are you doing hiring a former Mercyhurst basketball player at your company? I'm sure he's a good worker and all, but c'mon, man!!! Quit encouraging these people.

    Just kidding (kinda)

  3. The all-time ERA list looks more like a bus schedule.

  4. really - WSP?

    we something better to talk about..

    How about that weather?

  5. Keep up the good work, Barbara! ;)

  6. Does anyone have any inside information on the Girls team?

  7. From what I'm told, last year's starting five have all been deemed ineligible to play this year. Hmmm ... perhaps some kind of scandal? Can anyone get to the bottom of this?

  8. I think the faithful will be pleasantly surprised. Despite losing 5 starters, the cupboard is far from bare. Five returners who saw significant minutes, two extremely talented redshirts (according to Cleve, "Wait 'til you see these girls play") and a very good incoming group. May not be 37-1, but certainly poised to make another PSAC/NCAA run. Sounds like it'll be worth going early.

  9. golden-- the five from which team? the women's starting 5 graduated and i doubt the men had anything that could be considered a consistant starting 5

  10. Beth -- Just a snarky response to Bill's e-mail. For the record, I was referring to the "Girls," or more respectfully, the women's team.

    I agree with Boze ... the women's team won't reach the upper 30's for wins, but they should be a solid contender.

    Who is the starting point guard? Can we somehow finagle another year of eligibility for Tiffany Crocker? Can she play under an assumed name?

  11. From some one who has no idea what the heck he's talking about. From what I seen in practice. I think the Lady Knight starters will be Shanna Thompson, Julie Kleber, Jesse Tamerlano, Jen Papich, Amy Dacek and a toss up for the 6th man between Tucker, Lowe and McCoy all close

  12. Golden89 - If they have any walk-ons, they should have her dress as the "assistant coach Tiffany Crocker" and then Tiffany can take the player's place... I think it's fair... :)