Heading into Monday night’s season opener at Creighton, the St. Thomas men’s basketball team was officially listed as a 28-point underdog against the No. 9-ranked Blue Jays. After all, some consider this year’s Creighton squad a national title contender. The Tommies, meanwhile, are in only their second season as a Division I program with several former D-III players on the roster.
And yet, there the Tommies were with less than 10 minutes to play in the game.
Winning on the road.
On national television.
A 3-pointer from senior Brooks Allen put St. Thomas ahead 57-56 with 9:58 left and had observers tweeting about a potential upset brewing on college basketball’s opening night.
As Matt Norlander of CBS Sports noted:
In the end, the Tommies couldn’t hold on and fell 72-60, but gained plenty of attention, especially among the national audience who tuned in to FS1 expecting to see a blowout.
Before the game, more than 100 people packed Addy's Sports Bar & Grill in Omaha for the "Tommie Tailgate" to celebrate the start of the season. The room was filled with parents, grandparents, friends and supporters of St. Thomas, including some former coaches and Tommie alumni.