Seems weird not to have a game today

No basketball, no baseball, no softball, no football, not even soccer (scheduled game with Kansas on Friday was canceled). But we do have tennis; men are hosting #3 EOE-K later this afternoon and women are playing at Georgia now (Jawja up 1-0 after doubles, singles just beginning).

Women lost to Georgia 4-0 but the men have a decent shot at beating the Vols. Lost the doubles point but currently leading in five of the six singles matches.

Also the NCAA volleyball field will be announced later this afternoon. Hogs would be safely in the field in a normal year but they’re only taking 18 at-large teams this year.

It may seem weird but it is just fine with me. My favorite holiday is Easter because it is the most important day to me. I’ve worked many Easters and been gone to cover Final Fours for several. I do not like to be away from family on Easter to cover games.

I do recall the Easter in 1994 – spent in a Catholic church in Charlotte with Ed Beshara, my mentor in Tulsa. Ed made Nolan’s suits and was close to the Arkansas coach.

Ed was Catholic. I grew up Presbyterian (my mom’s Faith), but have gone to Baptist churches (my wife’s Faith) most of my life. We are members at C3 in Mountain Home now. I am a big fan of David Johnson (the pastor there who led his sermon with Eric Musselman thoughts on great comebacks) at Christ Community Church.

Back to 94 Easter, Ed asked me to go to Mass and he found the biggest church in the area of Charlotte where our hotel was located. Massive suburban church and it was full Sunday morning.

Ed told me just wear slacks and a golf shirt. We’ll be fine. We got there early and Ed led me to the center of the second row.

We are about five minutes into Mass and the priest was just above us. We are standing and it’s the first time Ed has really looked around and noticed that it’s packed and everyone is in their finest clothes. We were not dressed like everyone else. That was ironic because Ed was usually the best dressed man in any setting.

Ed says: “My God, we are under dressed.”

I whispered, “Ed, it’s Easter.”

Ed responded, “Holy shit, why didn’t you tell me?”

The Priest looked down at us ad smiled, “You two must be from Arkansas and just so you know it, ya’ll are dressed just fine for Easter service in North Carolina, too.”

The place roared in laughter. We were warmly greeted as we left the church. Ed called everyone hoss. And, about half that church thought their name was hoss by 12:15 p.m.

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Love the story about Ed. He must have been quite a character.

I was aware yesterday was Easter but we’ve had plenty of games on Easter before (Collin Kuhn’s grand slam against Kentucky comes to mind). Personally, we never made a big deal out of Easter (or Christmas for that matter) in our church so I don’t think of it as a major religious holiday, but I know that’s not a majority position.

Oh, volleyball didn’t make the field. Committee chairman said we were one of the first four out. Only three SEC teams made it.

Most SEC baseball teams have stopped playing on Easter in the last four or five years. Five of the seven SEC series last week began on Thursday.

Attendance for most teams is probably going to be better on a Thursday night than on Easter Sunday afternoon.

I’ll never forget the first Easter I had to work. (other than my paperboy days) I was a manager at Weingartens in Pine Bluff and the brass decided to open on Easter. I drew the straw to work. And the good folk in PB stayed away in groves. Thankfully I got out of the grocery business in 83 and have never worked another Easter.