The Most Memorable Moments of the Winter for Harvard Athletics

Published by Daniel A. Grafstein on March 14, 2012 at 8:53PM

The last few months have been full of ups and down for Harvard athletics. Here at The Back Page, we took a look back and compiled a list of the moments that made this winter one that we may never forget.

Biggest letdown: Penn 55, Harvard 54

Another year, another one-possession Harvard basketball loss with major postseason implications. The Crimson was in control, 49-40, with 7:56 left in the game. The 11-point-favorite just had to hold on to keep destiny in its own hands and essentially clinch its first ever outright Ivy League title.

No problem, right?

Wrong. Zach Rosen picks Harvard apart defensively, scoring 11 of his team’s final 15. Harvard forgets how to shoot, only recording a dunk, a lay-up, and two free throws the rest of the way. And in the waning moments, a shot that goes in is called back. Penn emerges victorious by the score of 55-54. Eager fans ready to storm the court go home stunned and appalled.

Coach of the winter: Tommy Amaker

Someone alert Coach K. Tommy Amaker is coming for you. After 15 losing campaigns in 16 years, Cambridge’s second-newest cult hero came to town. Amaker didn’t waste any time; in the next three seasons he led the Crimson to a combined record of 92-55. This season, his squad set a program record for victories in a season, made the top-25 for the first time in program history, and, just a week ago, earned its first NCAA tournament appearance in 66 years. Thanks in part to an invigorated recruiting process, Amaker has helped change the course of Harvard basketball and for that, he is our coach of the winter.

Biggest Surprise: Jeremy Lin

Have you heard of him? This question may seem silly now, but it didn’t a couple months ago. In fact, when the Crimson questioned many fans at Madison Square Garden about Jeremy Lin ’10 over winter break, it got responses such as: “Jeremy who?” Just weeks before his explosion, Lin couldn’t even reserve a spot at the end of the bench, as Knicks coach Mike D’Antoni sent him down to the D-League’s Erie Bayhawks. Regardless, Linsanity (Lin link below) has since swept the nation’s heart and is here to stay.

Play of the winter: Curry's dunk on Mangano

Wish we had a picture to show you. For now, we will settle with a description.