Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Playing Pink

TigerBlog got out of the shower and realized that he had given no thought to what he was going to wear to work today.

Then he tried to remember if this was an everyday thing or when it is that he figures out what he's going to wear.

Not that it's all that complicated for him. He has four pairs of pants to choose from, and then about 100 Princeton athletics shirts. Every now and then he'll wear the navy blue button down shirt, though that's about the only non-Princeton option in the closet.

TB's sense is that women plan out what they're going to wear more than men do, but it's possible that he's wrong. Not sexist. Just wrong.

When TB first started working here, he dress code required a tie every day between Labor Day and Memorial Day. As he looks at old pictures or of the remaining ones that hang in the closet, TB can conclude that he had some ugly, ugly ties.

As an aside, tying a tie is an important skill. TB learned it from FatherBlog, who would wear a suit and tie to the beach, and taught it to TigerBlog Jr., who has to wear a tie to school every day.

Anyway, these days, with Princeton's nearly perfect Nike deal, it's almost always something swoosh-related.

The result is that there is all kinds of orange and black in the closet.

One color TB doesn't have is pink, though he does have a key to Jadwin Gym, which will enable him to get into women's basketball this Saturday for free.

Anyone who doesn't have the key can also get in for free, simply by wearing something pink.

Well, not a small pink stripe across a sweater or something. It has to be a predominantly pink garment.

The occasion is Princeton Plays Pink, in conjunction with the Princeton-Dartmouth women's basketball game.

From the release:
The event, formerly known as Think Pink and Pink Zone, will support the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, the YWCA Breast Cancer Resource Center and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

All fans wearing pink will get into the game for free. If you forget to wear pink, Pink Zone short sleeve t-shirts will be available for purchase for $10 and long sleeve shirts are available for $20, with proceeds going to local and national breast cancer organizations.

Fans will see pink around Jadwin Gym including balloons, decorations and programs. Princeton University Dining Services will provide free coffee, hot chocolate, pink cupcakes and cookies. Fans who wear the most pink will have an opportunity to win prizes throughout the game.

The coaching staff and cheer squad will all be wearing pink. The Princeton Tigers, who currently boast a 19-4 overall record and a perfect 9-0 record in Ivy League play, will weave pink laces in their sneakers and wear pink socks. The officiating crew will call fouls using pink whistles.

At halftime, members of the audience who have been affected by breast cancer will be asked to come down to the court and form a human pink ribbon at center court.

Donation boxes to support breast cancer research can be found in the lobby of Jadwin Gym, where Robert Wood Johnson Health System and the YWCA Princeton Breast Cancer Recourse Center will have booths set up to provide information and education about their organizations and breast cancer.

In addition to the pink experience, there is also the matter of the significance for the women's basketball team this weekend.

The Tigers are currently 19-4 overall and 9-0 in the Ivy League. No other team has fewer than three league losses (Harvard and Yale).

Princeton has five league games remaining. Here are the opponents and the margin of victory for Princeton the first time around (keep in mind that Princeton needs to go 3-2 in these five games to clinch the outright championship and NCAA tournament bid):
Harvard - 28
Dartmouth - 31
Yale - 25
Brown - 12
Penn - 39

In other words, Princeton's chances of winning a third straight title are pretty good. TigerBlog would never, ever crown a team before it's won, though if he was ever going to make an exception to that rule, this might be the time.

But he won't. Not until it's actually over.

Should Princeton defeat Harvard and Dartmouth, though, then Harvard would for sure be eliminated and Princeton would clinch at least a tie, or the outright title if Yale were to lose one of its two games this weekend (at Columbia/Cornell).

There is a lot of pressure that goes along with being the prohibitive favorite. Every team you play circles that date on the schedule and certainly is trying to bring its best that night.

The level of methodical consistency that Princeton has played with this Ivy season has been remarkable. Now on the verge of a third-straight NCAA appearance after never having played in the tournament before, Princeton is so close that it would be normal to start looking ahead.

But these Tigers won't.

Not until it's official. No matter how good it's looking now.

No comments: