The first ingredient of a miracle is simple. First, there has to be widespread hopelessness before it happens.
Often, there also is despair. And anguish. And gloom. If you look hard enough, you may find a few locusts.
Throw in a few basketballs clanking off a few rims, and you might as well be talking about the past 20 years of USF basketball. You know, Team Pestilence. For two decades, no team in America was easier to ignore. For two decades, the Bulls wandered aimlessly — and shot the same way — from gym to gym without success.
They were the easiest team in the country to ignore. There was no tradition and no history, no recruits and no chance. The Bulls were the smallest kids on the toughest block in college basketball.
Look at them now, beaming and bouncing across the arena floor. They are alive in the NCAA Tournament, which has usually been out of their reach.