ROMULUS —In the dark, Uncle Mel sat alone at his desk, Wednesday night Feb 29, 2012 inside his office in the building that lines the highway that is the lifeline of the city that produces to the world the best vehicles.
The desk clock slowed to a crawl, the roar of the jets rolling down the runway taking off and disappearing into the overcast cloud and night and then the glow of Uncle Mel’s computer screen could not wake him or break his concentration steering into the light.
The digits 53-52 burned into the screen and into the night, Eastern Michigan University defeated Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo on the court inside Read Fieldhouse on the University Arena’s floor.
For the first time in history the Eagles have won the Mid-American Conference West Division title Wednesday night.
Uncle Mel is wondering if it was Devine intervention?
Eastern Michigan University’s senior point guard Darrell Lampley answered the prayer of many Eagle basketball fans.
Lampley leaped and floated toward the basket then he released a four foot shot that floated through the air like as described a raindrop bounced and danced on top of the rim before the hand of something brushed the ball into and through the nylon net.
“Lampley all his life has been a scorer but we have been trying to get him to see the floor as a whole and becoming a pure point guard,” eastern Michigan University basketball coach Rob Murphy said about Lampley. “As the season has gone on, he’s made a concentrated effort to get guys the ball in areas where they can be successful.”
Lampley is 10th in the conference with a scoring average of 13.3 points and he is second from the free throw line making 83 percent of his free throw.
Eastern Michigan University first year basketball coach Murphy said on the morning that he took over the program that it would take sometime time but he wanted to change the culture and the atmosphere on campus, in the city of Ypsilanti and more important inside the locker room.
Murphy opened up the door leading into the locker room and the many doors that outline the concourse area of the Convocation Center and suddenly those ill-feelings, bad coaching and bad temper and the ingredient that cloak and choke a program to death – mistrust and not believing in a program.
In a instant of a basketball season Murphy swept and vacuumed the house and just like that the ghost of past failure – have disappeared.
This season, the Mid-American Conference is placing all 12 teams into the tournament and then award the first-round byes in the conference’s top four teams based on the overall league record. The top two teams in the final MAC standings get a double-bye moving directly into the semifinal round of the league tourney.
Uncle Mel will be traveling to the city of Toledo, Ohio and the University of Toledo’s Savage Hall, Saturday afternoon March 3, 2012 and watch the closing of the 2012 Mid-American Conference regular season.
The tip off against the Rockets begins at 2 p.m.
Uncle Mel will be sitting with all of his the nieces and nephews with plenty of popcorn and a icy-cold beverage in hand ready for all the surrounding company and the tournament action Monday night.
About the Author
Written by Mel Suiter
Graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2002 and have been working as a beat writer for The Ypsilanti Courier covering Eastern Michigan University football and men's basketball during my school career and after graduation. I like the Mid-American Conference and the rest of the mid-major conferences.