Giordano Halleran & Ciesla P.C. shareholder Sharlene Hunt breathed a small sigh of relief when Ohio State University advanced to the Final Four.
Not that she relishes a fight with Peter Schofel, of Eastman Cos., but there would be a major rivalry in her family if her alma mater, Kansas University, was up against Syracuse University, where her son is a senior.
“My son and I text back and forth during games, and I got a frowny face from him when Syracuse lost to Ohio State,” Hunt said. “After Syracuse, he supports Kansas, so I know he’ll be very happy if we win. If it was a Kansas-Syracuse matchup, that probably wouldn’t be the case.”
While the Jayhawks stepped up their offense in the last half of the Midwest final against Princeton University corporate relations director Wendell Collins‘ University of North Carolina, Hunt said her team barely advanced past Christopher Stacco‘s Purdue University and Michelle Everman‘s North Carolina State University in previous rounds of NJBIZ Brackets.
“I agree with (Kansas head coach) Bill Self. They tried to give the game away, and NC State just wouldn’t take it,” Hunt said. “It was a close game, but it wasn’t a good game for either team. After it, my e-mail to my dad was, ‘Whew!’ “
Hunt attributed the Jayhawks’ success against UNC with Self, who she said “did a great job getting them into a defensive position and switching their tactics mid-game.” But for the matchup with the Buckeyes, she is more excited to see both teams’ “big guys” and greatest NBA potentials — Kansas forward Thomas Robinson and Ohio State forward Jared Sullinger — go head to head, since Sullinger missed the regular season game when Kansas beat Ohio State.
“Those two will be key players in this game, though Elijah Johnson also had some great 3-pointers against UNC. Either way, the Kansas and Ohio State players seem to be very evenly matched,” Hunt said. “We lost a bunch of key players to the NBA this year — like the Morris twins — and we have several juniors on the team, so I’m just hoping they come back to Kansas next year.”
Deana Lykins‘ unease about a Kansas and University of Kentucky matchup in the championship round of NJBIZ Brackets is mutual for Hunt, who said she would rather play Rutgers University associate athletic director Nick Ojea‘s Louisville University — “a team that’s not built up so much.”
Regardless of her opponent, Hunt said that the Jayhawks’ latest win against the Tar Heels has given the team “a more positive frame of mind, and a little confidence to carry them on in the tournament.”
“If (Schofel) wants me to bring it on, I’ll take that challenge,” Hunt said. “I know the Jayhawks will soar right over the Buckeyes.”