Saturday, March 03, 2007

March Madness

Can you guess what the title means? In the states right now, all the universities with good basketball programs are gearing up for the "Big Dance". The "Big Dance" is the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) basketball tournament and you must be invited to attend. Living here in Japan, I miss this. And I miss my Sacramento Kings of the NBA. Baseball and soccer are the KINGS of sports here in Japan. Last summer when FIBA held the World Basketball Championships here in Japan, even high school baseball got more television coverage. But popularity in basketball has been growing. There are now 2 professional leagues and 20% more Japanese are playing basketball than a decade ago. By playing and watching, I have personally seen that basketball in Japan is improving. So watch out J-League (soccer)! Basketball is stepping on the heels of soccer as the world's game and I hope to see the day when people here in Japan will cheer as strongly for their National basketball teams as they do for their other sporting teams.