"Home Sweet Home"
After 20 hours flying from South Africa to DFW we are finally back in The Big D. It is good to be home!
What day is it? When do you go to sleep? When I landed I turned on my PDA for the first time in about 10 days and the emails starting to roll! I emailed Tomasz....he got back to Poland safely. I emailed the Senegalese 3 - Bamba, Papa and Mouhammad to check on them as they where dropped off in Dakar to spend time with their families. Reality is setting in. We are indeed home.....and that is a good thing.
What a trip! We accomplished all we set out to do and more:
- create memories
Our players learned so much about Africa through the class they took with Professor Joci Edwards and Dr. Vicki Hill, both whom travelled with us to the beautiful continent across the Atlantic. In addition to the class work, when you actually see first hand what you are studying it means more...it sticks!
We bonded through our travels as we couldn't use our cell phones so we had to talk with each other more, we had every meal together, we were on buses together, we visited the families of the Senegalese 3......we had fun together.
We got better! We won our last game on Wednesday 107 -87 against the same team we lost to in our second game, the South African National Team. Bamba was great inside. His confidence is high as he is really scoring the ball well with jump hooks and turn around jumpers. We moved the ball unselfishly. We shot it well, close to 60%. We handled the ball well. Our defense got better. Everyone played great! It was a terrific way to finish the trip.
Being the first men's college team to travel to Africa should help us in the future as we got a chance to market our program in a continent full of talented prospects. Hopefully we will have some more Bamba's and Papa's in the future sporting the Mustang logo! It also made me proud of the way our travel party handled themselves in Africa. The players acted with the class every SMU alum and administrator would be proud of. It made me feel good when I would hear someone say something nice about how our guys carried themselves.
We certainly created memories....memories that will last us for the rest of our lives!
I would like to thank Malcolm Farmer and Steve Orsini again for making this trip a reality. Malcolm put this trip together, working on it for almost a year. Everything went better than expected! Malcolm is awesome. Steve Orsini allowed us to take this trip. There is not a better AD in the country. Thank you guys!