Ball is Life

I believe the legendary NASCAR driver Ricky Bobby once said, “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” How is this relevant? Well, the Specialized Master in Finance program fielded a team of Grade-A all-stars to play intramural B-league basketball every Tuesday night at 9:50pm, and the fellas are undefeated. Led by team captain Brian Perry, Big K & The Gang is already paving its path to the Finals: the internet has been blowing up with memes about how the squad is taking the Finals home in 6 games this year.

One of the internet's meme renditions of the team.
One of the internet’s meme renditions of the team.

Last Tuesday night was our opening night, in which we faced a fierce competitor; however, the SMF team ultimately pulled ahead towards the end of the game and notched our first victory of the season. Coach Terence Mordi after the game was quoted saying: “These guys started off a bit rough, shooting a dismal field percentage; however, in the second half they played as if it was their last game ever. I can’t get over how proud I am of these guys and the effort it took to pull out that W.”

Steve “Big K” Mowry was a dominate presence in the post, while Mark Venzor was an absolute weapon on the defensive end of the court. Ian Ding also provided valuable minutes at point guard, notching several assists in the process. Overall, each of the 8 team members showed strong initial performances, providing ESPN and other basketball analysts with some positive insights for what is to come throughout the rest of the season.

Rumor has it (albeit unconfirmed), this is the most wins that an SMF team has had in an intramural sport this school year. From what I have seen thus far, this team is the epitome of hard-working and blue-collar. Although the team has been surrounded by media and fans looking for comments and autographs, respectively, this group of financiers is looking to carry this momentum heading into our second game of the season this Tuesday night.

Not Just a Football School …

For Christmas, it was hard to decide what to get my brother. He’s difficult to shop for because there is nothing he really needs and the list of things he wants is limited for me. After much debt, I decided to give him the gift of OSU basketball. I mean, who wouldn’t want to see our amazing (and current #1 in the country) basketball team and since my brother goes to University of Kentucky, he has become quite the basketball fan. I hadn’t been to a game since my freshman year of college when Greg Oden was here. I’d always wanted to go again, but the opportunity to just never came up, until this past weekend. With the chance to become #1 on the line, my brother and I went to see OSU vs Penn State, hoping that we would not be bad luck for the team…

The atmosphere at the Schott is a lot different than the football atmosphere we all know and love; however, that is not to say it is disappointing, just different. There aren’t as many people, but the crowd still really gets into the game. The crowd would be fairly quiet, then when a big play happened the arena would erupt in cheers. One of my favorite moments was when the students started doing O-H-I-O by having each section say a different letter. The students are really into the game, since it is the ones who are really into basketball that actually buy the season tickets, unlike with football where almost everyone buys season tickets.

While you are at OSU, you definitely have to try going to other sporting events OSU has to offer, especially basketball. OSU sports have so much more to offer than just football and it’s important to support other programs as well.

Tips for the first-time basketball ticket buyer:

1. They don’t sell single-game student tickets anymore, just full season. That being said, if you want to go to just one game, look on or post a status on Facebook about your need for a student ticket. Usually, during Christmas break people are more than willing to give up their tickets.

2. Sit in the student section. This goes along with number 1. The non-student, single game tickets are sold at the 300 level, which is pretty high up. If you don’t mind that fact, then go for it, otherwise stick with the student ticket. They are some of the best in house.

3. Get there at least 20 minutes before tip-off. Right before the game, they show a quick video of the players coming out of the locker room, then they introduce them. It is really fun to watch as they dim the lights and play music.

4. Get ready to “Get Crazy.” If you are in the student section behind the basket, be ready to do almost anything you can to distract the opposing team as they take free-throw shots. This is extremely important. Be ready to yell and scream for your Ohio State Buckeyes Basketball team.

Hilarious professor email

Long weekends are great.  I was able to practice Finance and catch up on some of the reading I was unable to do last weekend because I was in Cincinnati for the Bengals game.  Well as it turns out, long weekends are also helpful when you are trying to nurse a black eye.  Although my eye is looking better, it is not going to be normal looking for at least another five days.  As a result, I decided to email my professors to tell them that I have a black eye and that I hope it won’t be a distraction in class.  What resulted is one of the funniest emails I have ever received from a professor…


Dear Professor,

I just wanted to let you know that I have a pretty nasty black eye that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.  I was accidentally elbowed while playing basketball in the gym on Friday afternoon with several classmates.  I don’t want this to be a distraction in class tomorrow, so here is a heads up.

Best regards,

Joe Fahrendorf


2 minutes later…



Yikes.  If you wanted to cover this up, you could always pull off the eye patch.  If you go down this route, I’d recommend a turtleneck and a blazer to compliment the look.   That said, looking like a villain from a James Bond movie may be more distracting than just having a black eye.

See you tomorrow.


This was not the response I expected.  I would actually try the “villain from a James Bond movie” look, but I think the black eye alone will be funny enough for my classmates.

MBA basketball curse – continued

Despite blogging about the recent string of basketball related injuries to the MBA class, I decided to play basketball with a bunch of classmates.   Oops!   I now have a black eye thanks to a classmate’s elbow (accidental) while we were trying to get a rebound.  Hopefully this shiner goes away in the next five days or I’ll be wearing makeup to meet my corporate mentor.  On the bright side, I guess this is better than spraining an ankle or tearing my Achilles tendon.

The MBA basketball curse

It’s official…  MBA students are not meant to play basketball.  Tonight I drove a classmate to the ER after he had a bad fall during a basketball game.  Initially we thought he broke his ankle, but it turns out that it’s just severely sprained.  Obviously an injury such as this is bound to happen; however, this incident is the 4th Fisher 2011 basketball injury since school began. 

Earlier in the year a group of Fisher MBAs were playing basketball in the ARC and during a wild loose ball scramble, one of our classmates tore his Achilles tendon.  Four days later, another MBA student went down with a nasty high ankle sprain.  Roughly a month later, a third classmate broke his foot in a pick-up game.  These are troubling stats, especially since the Fisher MBA intramural basketball team starts our season next week. 

Feel better Greg.  We need you back next week.

– Joe