Tuesday will be a day that Craig Cusick won’t soon forget.
On Tuesday evening, BYU’s senior guard was the hero, hitting the game-winning shot as the Cougars knocked off in-state rival Utah State 70-68 in front of a packed Marriott Center. It’s the kind of play every kid dreams of growing up: thousands of people in the crowd, a missed shot bounces right to you and you hear the buzzer going off as you watch your shot settle into the net to knock off a rival.
“As a player, you couldn’t dream it any better,” Cusick told reporters after the game. “I was just fortunate. Coach called a great play. I saw that when Matt shot it that there was a chance that it was going to be a little bit short. I ran where I thought it was going to come off, and I was fortunate.the ball came to me.”
A dream come true, right:
Well, not exactly.
It was a bittersweet moment for Cusick, as he had found out earlier in the day that his dad had been diagnosed with cancer. According to Jay Drew of the Salt Lake Tribune, Randy Cusick had collapsed last Sunday and was hospitalized. On Tuesday afternoon, they discovered that the elder Cusick had a cancerous tumor.
Cusick, who was reportedly and expectedly emotional after the game, didn’t address his father’s health, but a quote that made the rounds from Tyler Haws can provide some context:
“Craig’s got ice in his veins. Things don’t get to him very easily. That’s the type of person he is. He’s calm in those situations and he’s ready to make a big shot.”
Our thoughts go out to the Cusick family, and we can only hope that pops a) has a speedy and full recovery and b) had a chance to see his son’s moment of glory.
(It’s worth noting that this game was rescheduled from December after Utah State’s Danny Berger collapsed and had to be resuscitated using CPR and a defibrillator on the court during an Aggie practice.)
(h/t Kyle Ringo for digging up the video)
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.