Just thought we needed to summarize.
Zaire Taylor arrived at Mizzou Arena at 2:30 p.m. yesterday and found a line of students snaking around the building. As he chatted up the fans, they suggested a sign should be made in his honor. The sign read: “Zaire Taylor, will you marry me?” He wasn’t sure why that message was chosen, but not to be impolite, he accepted the proposal.
At 11 p.m., Taylor stood on Norm Stewart Court, the sign in his right hand and a basketball in his left. His teammates had already showered and changed, but he still wore his uniform. By team rule, Taylor was supposed to forget about Missouri’s 62-60 victory over Kansas by midnight, and he was going to savor every last second.
He said the ball appeared to hang above the basket and drop in slow motion through the hoop with 1.3 seconds left.
Then world started whirling by. Taylor was caught in a swarm of students rushing the court. He was interviewed by ESPN’s Holly Rowe in the middle of the madness but finally had to admit, “I can’t hear anything you’re saying.” Even an hour afterward, he struggled to put into words what this meant to him, saying, “I try to stay humble.”
He said he couldn’t celebrate last night because he had to get up and go to class today. Surely after that there would be chances for Mr. Big Shot to revel in his newfound celebrity, but he said no.
“I have to have a tooth pulled,” Taylor said.
He was smiling, though. His school’s fans were in love with basketball again, in love with him in particular, and he had the sign to prove it.
The aftermath in pictures:
And just for fun (NSFW, seriously)...