AP Photo/David Stluka
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) _ There are some big differences between Bo Ryan’s first experience with winning a national championship and his trip to Indianapolis this week.
For one thing, he was coaching a Division III program from Wisconsin-Platteville back in 1991. These days, he’s leading top-seeded Wisconsin into Monday night’s championship game against Duke at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Platteville’s victory over Franklin and Marshall was seen by 2,379 people in Springfield, Ohio. There will be more than 70,000 people on hand _ not to mention millions watching on television _ for this year’s title game.
The kids that played in the first of Ryan’s four Division III title games 24 years ago? They went on to become teachers, doctors and businessmen. The kids in this year’s game? Several will be making millions in the NBA this fall.
Then there’s the food.
“Training table meal was hot dogs. The morning of the game I had a cream doughnut and a diet pop,” Ryan said. “Now, we have the best _ french toast, eggs. We have people cooking omelets. What else do we have? Bacon, turkey _ did they say prunes? And all the fruit you could think about asking.”
There was also a difference in media attention.
“I think there was one stringer from the Madison paper that showed up and covered the game,” Ryan said, gazing out over a room full of reporters. “So you tell me how it’s different.”
Follow Dave Skretta on Twitter @APdaveskretta