After New Mexico’s mind-boggling loss to Harvard on Thursday night, Loboland.com editor and longtime writer Dennis Latta actually QUIT HIS JOB. He wrote the most ridiculous, over-dramatic, over-the-top and over-the-next-top-after-that goodbye letter that I wasn’t sure if I was reading about sports, or if it was the note I wrote to my 8th grade crush after he rejected me for the 33rd time in a row.
Latta has been covering the Lobos for 33 years and in that time New Mexico never reached the Sweet 16, so it's not like he's accustomed to any kind of great success covering the program. Nevertheless, after the upset loss against Harvard, he took his ball and went home like a child. In-between EIGHT “I was wrong’s,” Latta says things like:
"A win over UNLV on its home floor was impressive. Beating San Diego State and Colorado State and Boise State was the sign of success because the conference and these teams were so good."
Unless this is 1990, dude, I have no idea what you're talking about.
"Now, the mighty MWC is 1-3 in the NCAA, and has not lost to any team seeded above a 13. It's not like they lost to Indiana or Louisville or even Georgetown or Michigan State. No, the losses were to the traditional powerhouses of LaSalle, California and Harvard. The league I thought was so good turns out to be so bad."
I don’t know about you, but I have NEVER considered the MWC to be “mighty.” Oh, and dude? Georgetown just lost to a team that was not even eligible to play in this dance until last year. LaSalle, California and Harvard do not appreciate your sarcastic digs at them.
This paragraph might be my favorite, though:
"But I won't be wrong again. It was a lot easier to take when expectations were lower. Losing was acceptable because UNM had almost always lost when it really counted. You didn't have visions of greatness, only to have them dashed. After the pitiful performance UNM put up against a team that doesn't even offer scholarships, I've given up. Having all five starters back next season means nothing on a team that can just disappear like that. I'd be back to wondering when it would collapse, have a terrible game and lose to an inferior team again."
Child, please. How, after 33 seasons, have you not managed to check your expectations at the door and, I don’t know, be just a tiny bit professional? New Mexico is not the first, nor the last 3 seed to be defeated in the NCAA Tournament. There's plenty of things in life worth quitting your job over, but this is far from one of them.
I wonder if, after Latta has let the burn of a loss digest a bit and gets a grip on reality, he will realize the world doesn’t need to end when your team loses. (This coming from someone who cried both when Villanova made the Final Four in 2009 AND when they subsequently got curb-stomped by North Carolina, THE BANE OF MY EXISTENCE.)
You have to wonder how Latta stuck around for those 33 years if all it took was one tournament upset to send him over the edge. On the other hand, if he is going to be throwing fits like this and giving up on a team after 33 years and one bad loss, New Mexico is probably better off without him.