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Yet again, Troy falls short when it matters

Again, it is the classic struggle, and tired story, of falling short for Troy athletics.

Each of the sports has had their own respective “close calls.”

We have seen it in baseball, when the team fell short to Alabama in the regionals a couple years back.

We have seen it in football, when the Trojans lost its second-straight bowl game in double-overtime, by a mere three points.

And again, we saw it with basketball last night.

The rise and fall of these teams is just as depressing as watching Michael Corleone’s life play out.

There are high points and then there are the really low points.

One aspect I can’t leave out is the progress and steps each program, especially basketball, has taken over the past couple of years.

Each program has done a fairly fantastic job of moving in the right direction.

Last season, we saw a glimpse of what the basketball team was and is capable of and this season, the team was knocking on the door of its second NCAA tournament bid.

The Trojans did exactly what it needed to do put position themselves for the “Big Dance.”

They made a strong run during the regular season, which led to its first ever conference title in a particularly well-balanced Sun Belt field of teams

They had their dancing shoes on.

Except, there was just one problem – they weren’t picked up.

Don’t get me wrong, to make it into post season play for the second consecutive season is a respectable accomplishment.

The National Invitation Tournament (NIT) is not a bad runner-up prize at all…but with that being said, its not the first thing people think about after hearing the term, “March Madness.”

I have always heard the famous cliché, “Any publicity, is good publicity.”

But how is losing in the games that matter most “good publicity”?

It’s not.

The past two basketball seasons have been a rebirth for the program since it made the jump from the Atlantic Sun conference to the Sun Belt.

It has shown that it can play with and beat the best in the conference numerous times but unfortunately, only on their time.

However, at some point, hopefully in the near future, Troy will be known for its ability to consistently play the bigger schools – and consistently win rather than just the latter.

It’s only a matter of time, but it feels like all of Trojan Nation has been living this same nightmare out for decades upon decades.

Greg Rossino is the sports editor for The Messenger, and he can be reached at greg.rossino@Troymessenger.com or on Twitter at Messenger_Greg.