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For those loyal Villanovan readers, I should introduce myself as the “unnamed sports editor” from a previous column who was asked out for cereal and ended up a Villanova marriage statistic.

As I’m sure you heard on your campus tour while you stood in front of the St. Thomas of Villanova Church, there is a high probability that you, too, will find love and marriage on the Main Line.

It was at that point during my admissions visit that I distinctly remember rolling my eyes. This was my second go-around on the Villanova tour, and I did not appreciate a Blue Key member telling me, yet again, that I had four years to avoid becoming Lady Edith Crawley.

Fast-forward ten years, and here I am betrothed to a fellow Villanovan who once thought the headline “Baseball team wins, loses, ties” made for compelling journalism.

The beauty of hindsight is knowing how fortunate I am to not have had my expectations met. If I need another reminder, all I have to do is look at the wedding guest list. It is a who’s who of happenstance meetings-turned-lifelong bonds, many of which occurred at Villanova.

While the standard wedding has to accommodate for the bride and groom’s families, ours has to make room for a third: the Villanova basketball family.

I entered the Pavilion my freshman year thinking I simply was going to introduce myself to an assistant men’s basketball coach with a mutual New Jersey (shocking) connection. Six years and one Final Four later, I walked out of the Davis Center.

From the time we started dating, my boyfriend had to accept the fact that Villanova basketball was going to be the third wheel. For most of the campus, the NCAA Tournament is a secular holiday.

For my boyfriend, it meant getting 3 a.m. phone calls while I was helping coaches pull together scouting reports and ticket lists.

Also, while we all have unique undergraduate experiences, I’m willing to bet few of you have had Coach Wright warn you that your girlfriend has 16 Division One basketball players keeping an eye out for her. To be fair, I think Coach finally came around. He saved us several phone calls when he announced our engagement on Twitter.

Given our history, it should not come as a surprise that my fiancé and I strategically set our wedding date around the college basketball season and recruiting dead periods. Fortunately our venue was able to meet all three of our families’ needs.

It would be hard to imagine my life today if things had gone as planned. Like my soon-to-be better half, I did not expect to spend four years editing Coffee Break and Staff Picks in a florescent-lit newspaper office.

Nor did I expect to meet half of our bridal party somewhere in between St. Monica, Connelly Center and the D Wing of Stanford Hall.  And I especially did not expect to gain another family when I walked into the Villanova men’s basketball office.

Because of my Villanova experiences and the advantage of hindsight, I have come to appreciate the unexpected more and to roll my eyes less (or at least to be more subtle). Of course, though, the real test will arrive this summer. Everything always goes as expected on the wedding day, right?

 

 

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