No matter where you go, unless it’s to watch a team without seniors, Senior Day is moving. Three North Carolina seniors played their last home game Sunday.
Dewey Burke, a senior from Philadelphia who had played 26 minutes all season, went first. He was introduced, the crowd at the Dean Smith Center rewarded him with cheers for four years of hard practices, and he ran to the bench to pick up a rose to hand to his mom. But he forgot the rose. So he ran back and coach Roy Williams, laughing, handed it to Burke, who ran to his mom, Betsy, and handed it to her.
Wes Miller, the senior from Charlotte, went next, and fans responded loudly and warmly in recognition of the 3-point shots from NBA distance that helped make his reputation. He grabbed the rose and handed it to his mom, Susan. Then came Reyshawn Terry, the most accomplished player in the group, who handed the rose to his mom, Barbara.
There were enough hugs and claps, the players showing a human side, that even a cynic would be moved.
Each senior started, of course, and Burke played two minutes. When he was replaced, every played on the bench rose to greet him and slap his hand. The reserves reacted as if Burke were a star. For a few minutes, he finally was.