The Boston Globe has a piece detailing Harvard basketball standout Jeremy Lin’s progress at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. The author, Gary Washburn, wastes no time taking cheap shots at the quality of Ivy League basketball. He’s also obviously never been to Newman Arena:
[The NBA executive] turned and found a European scout whose laptop was on, asking if he could interrupt his work for a few moments to conduct a search. Suddenly, Lin’s picture popped up on the screen. Before his appearance at the Las Vegas Pro Summer League last week, Lin was an unknown outside of Cambridge, New Haven, and the other Ivy League cities.
But this is Vegas and the NBA, not a small gym on a Friday night in Ithaca, N.Y. And the spotlight was on Lin, especially Thursday night when the gym was full of executives, media members, and fans who knew nothing of the 6-foot-3-inch Lin except his intelligence, because he attended Harvard.
Newman Arena actually provides seating for 4,473 fans, so I’m not sure what constitutes a large gym in Mr. Washburn’s mind if Newman Arena is small. Moreover, these NBA Summer League games have averaged 4,079 fans per session, so that’s fewer than the normal sellout crowd of screaming Big Red fans at Newman Arena.
When will Cornell and the Ivy League get some respect?