As the team bus rolled into the parking lot of Ellis T. Johnson Arena, fans showed their appreciation for a season that will go down in school history. Morehead State's run may have been cut short of the Sweet 16, but supporters will never forget how far the team came. "It's alright," MSU fan Marvin Puckett said, "They made a good run. It's the farthest they've made it in... ever."
"It's been great," long time fan Gene Duncan said, "It just has been great. I'm tickled to death with it. Now we can't go all the way to the top immediately, but one of these days we'll be up there, and I hope I'm still there to be with them."
For the players and their coach, support from fans has given them strength throughout the season. "It feels great to learn the fans really care about us even though we couldn't pull out sweet 16," Wooden Award finalist Kenneth Faried said, "they just still show how much they care and cherish us. We're just proud to come home to these lovely fans. I mean, wow."
"I think it shows how far our program has grown and developed over the last five years," Coach Donnie Tyndall said, "I don't know when we first got the job if there was this many people coming to home games, and now you have this many people showing up for a welcoming home from the NCAA tournament."
That energy from fans has given new life to a program on the rise, and the return has been tremendous. "It's boosted the morale," MSU faulty member Ted Pass said, "The publicity that the basketball team has brought Morehead State University and Morehead, Kentucky, you can't pay for."
"A lot of people are going to know where Morehead State University is that did not know that earlier," former MSU president Dr. Nelson Grote said.
"Now when you say Morehead, they're like, oh those are the guys that beat Louisville in the first round that year," OVC MVP Demonte Harper added.
As one season ends, a new era begins for a team whose fans will always remember the path that got them here.
With the season over, many have speculated about Coach Tyndall's future, but he tells us for now he's focused on this team's recruitment.