The 1994 classic The Shawshank Redemption finds prisoners Andy Dufresne, played by Tim Robbins, and Ellis Boyd "Red" Redding, played by Morgan Freeman, discussing the value of hope throughout their lengthy sentences. They have very different views on the subject.
"Hope is a dangerous thing," Red says. "Hope can drive a man insane."
Andy believes that "Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things. And no good thing ever dies."
Two days after the Arkansas Razorbacks made their exit from the 2011 Southeastern Conference Men's Basketball Tournament by giving up a 74-68 decision to the Tennessee Volunteers and capping off their second three-game losing streak of the season, a visit to the schedule of upcoming games on the Razorbacks' official website reveals that the Hogs are still slotted for a game on Saturday, April 2, in Houston, Texas.
That would be the National Semifinal. Commonly known as the Final Four. I think it's safe to say that Red would feel validated.
Perhaps, though, there is some merit in what Andy preaches. No, the Razorbacks will not be playing in Houston on April 2. That doesn't mean, however, that it cannot be an important day for the basketball program. The team will not be in Houston, but perhaps the one Hog that matters now will be. Perhaps Athletic Director Jeff Long will be in attendance. Wooing the next great Razorback coach, be he in the stands or on the court.
Of course, presently there is no coaching vacancy at the University of Arkansas. As of the time of this writing, John Pelphrey continues to be the coach. To which another great line from that great movie springs to mind.
"Get busy living," Andy Dufresne says, "or get busy dying."