Since this is not a sports blog per se, it might be a bit extreme to cover all the major collegiate sporting events that are going on this weekend across the country.
But, since there are presidential primaries in Rhode Island, Vermont, Texas and Ohio, my circuits are a bit overloaded. And, let's face it, sports is less polarizing than politics.............hmm, for someone who lives in North Carolina, I just made one awfully darn naiive statement (for those living in Bulgaria, there are huge college basketball rivalries in this state!).
Let's start out West, and in honor of my cousin Kurt Gokbudak's daughter Lauren's 19th birthday, which is today, we will start with her school The University of California at Santa Barbara.
Nicknamed the Gauchos, UCSB is one of the few schools in the country with a water polo team.
The men's basketball team will have its final home game against UC-Irvine starting at 10 pm Eastern Time.
The Gauchos will honor its seniors, including standout player Alex Harris from Alameda, Calif., along with seniors Ivan Elliot, Nedim Pajevic and Beau Gibb_gotta love that name!
Closer to home, my alma mater Radford University has its season finale at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.. My beloved Highlanders will face our arch-rival the Flames at 7 p.m. We won the first game in Radford, Va., 89-88.
The Highlanders are coming of a disappointing 77-54 loss to High Point University, just down the road in High Point, NC. But, the team has four promising players, including Martell McDuffy from Laurel, Md., who was recently recognized as Big South Conference player of the week.
Other standouts for RU include Joey Lynch-Flohr, Kenny Thomas and Amir Johnson. RU's assistant coach Ali Ton is from my father's country, Turkey.
Alas, there are no Turkish restaurants in Lynchburg, but there is a fabolous one called Tallula's in Chapel Hill, NC.
It will be at the University of North Carolina campus where the women's gymnastics team (my favorite college sport) will hold their final home meet of the year.
The event, also known as the Tarheel Invitational, will include The University of Maryland, The University of New Hampshire and William & Mary. It starts at 1 p.m.
UNC will honor four senior gymnasts, one of whom_ Sarrie Rubin will not be able to compete due to an injury sustained in a home loss to then third-ranked University of Florida last week (The Gators narrowly lost to another gymnastics powerhouse, The University of Alabama on Friday night).
But, the three other seniors, Angela Lauten of Kernersville, NC, Shawna Kelly of Chantilly, Va., and Alice Xu of Rockville, Md., will be trying their best on the vault (not to mention the bars, floor and balance beam!).
"This is the final home meet for our seniors and the team wants to make it special for them," UNC women's gymnastics coach Derek Galvin said in a UNC press release.
The Tarheels have been ranked in the top 25 this year, and one expects a good meet on Saturday.
From what I gather, UNH will be the toughest competition for the Tarheels.
I shall post the results for all these events on Sunday. Hopefully, one of the home teams will win.....err, except Liberty University.........:)