Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Davidson Superfan: Dick Sanderson

Dick Sanderson is a HUGE Davidson Wildcat fan. You may have noticed, after the victory against Furman at Belk Arena and claiming the #1 seed in the SoCon Tournament, that the entire team climbed the stairs at Belk Arena to pose for a celebration picture with Dick. If you were at the game on Saturday in Charleston, you would have also seen the entire team climb the stairs in the North Charleston Coliseum to pose for a team picture with Dick and celebrate the SoCon Championship with him.

I have not met Dick, but I have heard a fair amount about him....all of it amazingly good. It is my understanding that Dick has attended most, if not all, of the Davidson home games this season, and in numerous seasons past. I am also told that Coach McKillop and Dick are friends, and that Bob would raise his fist to Dick after each home victory this year as Bob left the floor, as his way of celebrating the victory with him. Additionally, Dick coached youth basketball, soccer and baseball in the Davidson community, even coaching Bob's son, Brendan, in soccer. Everyone that I have spoken to says that Dick Sanderson is a cherished member of the Davidson community, and is an inspiration.

At the hotel on Saturday night, Coach McKillop addressed the crowd of Davidson faithful. He spoke about what great people the players are. Coach gave several examples, one of which was a story about cutting down the nets just a couple of hours beforehand. While the team was taking turns cutting down the net in front of the Davidson bench, at least one of the players quietly slipped down to the other end of the court to cut down the other net. Of course, nobody paid much attention, since all the activity was on the other end of the court. After they cut down the net that was not receiving any attention, the players took that other net up to Dick, which I believe he wore around his neck the rest of the evening. The rest of the team followed, and the celebration pictured above was the result. That must have been a special moment for Dick because, as Coach McKillop was talking about it to the crowd at the hotel, Dick appeared to be crying. I happened to be standing next to Dick at that time, and it was a moment that I will never forget.

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