What Happened After The Dunk

November 12, 2013


Friday, November 8 will forever go down in Conn Gymnasium history as the day of The Dunk. Check out the new, higher-resolution footage. 

To Falcons fans who witnessed the feat, the otherwise vague phrase recalls images of a packed gymnasium, the anticipation of a hard-earned win, the split-second of silence followed by a basketball rim lying broken on the hardwood and the ensuing chaos of a student section filled with a record 167 Falcon Days visitors.

In what many are referring to as the greatest moment in Florida College athletics history, freshman Anthony Allen from Eustis, Fla. quite literally tore down the rim on a put-back dunk, sending Conn Gymnasium into an absolute frenzy. The play was preceded by a 16-point Falcons comeback, and put them up six with 47 seconds remaining. The Falcons held on for the win, 71-64.

“The Dunk was something I’ve never seen before,” said junior Evan Rude, the exuberant unofficial leader of Conn’s student section. “I just sat down and put my hands on my head in disbelief…I looked around and saw kids running around the court like maniacs doing chest bumps.”

“That is the loudest I have ever heard Conn,” said Falcons announcer Ryan Lanning ’06, who has announced since his junior year and has seen dozens of spectacular plays.

The following morning, video of The Dunk went viral, and it was featured on various web outlets, including CBS Sports, NBC Sports and Yahoo Sports. By Monday it had reached 100,000 views. The clip currently has reached over 265,000 views.

The fortunate 300 fans who witnessed The Dunk in person will not soon forget it, and the play will undoubtedly be remembered as one of the most electrifying in Falcons basketball history.

But in a wider context and on a higher plane than sport, The Dunk was far from the most important thing to happen in Conn Gymnasium on November 8.

What happened after The Dunk is not something that would pack most college gymnasiums; it’s not something that would acquire 200,000, or even a few hundred, Youtube views; but it’s something that lies at the heart of Florida College’s students, faculty and alumni around the nation.

After The Dunk, students, faculty and staff gathered at midcourt and used what little was left of their voices to sing. Seeing hundreds of students channeling their collective energy from school spirit to spirituality is a regular phenomenon at Florida College, and a traditional ending for the preview weekend known as Falcon Days.

The Dunk gave Florida College a level of nationwide attention that will likely never be repeated. Alumni and friends of the College took to social media to rally around The Dunk’s publicity, making it the most-viewed post ever on the Falcons Facebook page, and providing countless retweets of its many web appearances.

But if the thousands of College friends and alumni across the nation could have witnessed only one event on November 8, the thrill and emotion of The Dunk would have ranked second. Because the same alumni base that rallied around The Dunk’s online presence, is the same alumni base of spiritually-minded people who were once members of a spiritually-minded student body.

Florida College is proud of its students, alumni and friends, and athletics programs and the many Christians who help comprise them.