Coming into last night, the Charlotte 49ers were in third place in the Atlantic 10, one game behind Temple, with a 4-1 conference record and a 14-5 overall mark.
Bobby Lutz's squad won at then-No. 20 Louisville in November and eight days ago at NCAA Tournament contender Richmond. They're ranked No. 88 in Pomeroy and No. 49 in offensive efficiency.
So I was more than a little surprised when I checked the wire last night and saw that the students at Dale Halton Arena stormed the floor after their team beat No. 15 Temple, 74-64.
Notice how I said beat, not upset.
Yes, the Owls are the only ranked team in the Atlantic 10, and yes, the 49ers' win pulled them even with the Owls at the top of the standings. It's a compliment to Temple that Charlotte's fans thought the game was that big a deal.
But as good as Temple is, beating the Owls at home when you're only a game behind them at tipoff doesn't meet my court-storming standards.
Furthermore, it goes against Storming the Floor's official rules for the eponymous act:
-If your unranked team beats a top-10 opponent.
-If your lower-division school beats a D1 opponent.
-You beat your most hated rival in overtime, or on a last-second miracle shot.
-Your team breaks a long losing streak against a particularly difficult opponent.
Let's take the rules in order.
- Temple isn't ranked in the top 10.
- Charlotte isn't a Division II school.
- The two teams certainly aren't rivals the way Temple and St. Joe's or La Salle are, and the margin of victory was 10 points.
- The Owls beat the 49ers last year and the year before, but split two games in 2006-07.
Now you can call me a spoilsport if you want. Charlotte hasn't made the NCAA Tournament since 2005 (though they have gone dancing three times in the last 10 years), and college kids ought to be allowed to have fun, right?
I suppose. But if it were up to me, I'd save the celebrations for the bigger prizes in March. Especially since Charlotte still has to visit Dayton and Rhode Island, and has home games to come against Xavier and Richmond.
What say you?