The weekend of Saturday January 26 and Sunday January 27 was an interesting weekend for a lot of reasons. One particular contest was not played on the same court or same pitch but half a world apart.
On Saturday January 26, 2013 the Northern Illinois men’s basketball team travelled to Yipsilanti, Michigan to play Mid-American conference rival Eastern Michigan.
Northern Illinois then proceeded to play one of the most futile games and easily one of the most stunning First Half’s in NCAA basketball history. The Northern Illinois Huskies scored a total of 4 points in the First Half of the game. 4 Points.
On Sunday 27, 2013 Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona hosted Osasuna in a La Liga league match. Messi then proceeded to play one of the most impressive matches in his already stellar and award-studded career. Messi scored 4 goals in the match. 4 goals.
There is not much more to say about this juxtaposition that occurred on the same weekend. So we follow on...
Most of us don’t follow Northern Illinois basketball or the Mid-American Conference. Most of us don’t follow La Liga football (soccer, for us here in the USA) much less Lionel Messi.
Here are some important facts about these two events:
Northern Illinois Huskies Men’s Basketball Team
Division I. Mid-American Conference, West Division
Overall Season Record: 8 Wins 11 Losses (1-5 in conference)
- In the First Half of their game that Saturday, the Huskies shot 1 for 31 from the floor (3.2%), 2 for 5 from the Free Throw line (40.0%) and 0 for 17 from the 3-Point Line (0.00%).
- Northern Illinois made their first shot from the field one minute into the game to take a 2-0 lead.
- The Huskies didn’t score again until 8:48 in the First Half when the made one Free Throw to score their third point.
- To round out their four points for the Half, Northern Illinois made another Free Throw when their was 2:32 seconds left before Half Time.
- Northern Illinois made their second field goal of the game at the 14:27 mark of the Second Half - 24 minutes and 33 seconds of total game time, more than entire Half of basketball; During this stretch the Huskies missed 36 consecutive shots.
La Liga (Spain’s top professional league)
Team Season Record: 19 Wins 1 Loss 1 Draw
Season Statistics: 21 Games Played 33 Goals 7 Assists
- Four-Time Winner of FIFA Ballon d’Or (FIFA’s player of the year award including this 2012 season)
- Messi had 5 Shots on Goal in the match; He made 4 of them. One of of them was a Penalty Kick.
- Messi was 3 for 4 from the pitch (75%) and 1 for 1 on Penalty Shots (100%).
- The times of Messi’s goals were: 11 minutes, 27 minutes, 56 minutes and 58 minutes (a regulation football match is 90 minutes, so Messi scored his final goal with 32 minutes left to play).
Northern Illinois very sad First Half of play against Eastern Michigan stands on it’s own as one of the worst performances in college basketball at any level.
On the that same weekend, however, something even more sad for the Huskies and their coaches and remarkable for the rest of the sports world, is that the world’s best football player (one man) scored in one match the same amount of points they scored as a team (15 players) in one Half of play.
Northern Illinois vs. Eastern Michigan box score
(Also split up by Halves to get the entire picture)
FC Barcelona vs. Osasuna Match Results and Statistics
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