NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — The Loyola men’s basketball team arrived home from Kansas City, Mo., early Thursday morning after winning the NAIA national championship on Tuesday.
And, they got a surprise – a police escort back to campus.
WGNO Sports Director Ed Daniels, along with fellow students and friends, gathered at 1:27 a.m. to greet the Wolf Pack with a heroes’ welcome.
When asked Daniels asked NAIA National Player of the Year, Zach Wrightsil, what the championship rings should look like, he was quick to answer.
“What do you think the rings should look like?,” a grinning Wrightsil posed the question back to Daniels. “Shiny. Big. Expensive. Those are the three words I got for you right there. Those are three really good words. That’s what we are expecting, all the guys cementing ourselves in history. And, to share that with our friends and family the rest of our lives.”
Teammate Myles Burns admitted the accomplishment of bringing Loyola just its second national championship in school history – a full 78 years after originally doing so in 1945.
“I can honestly say it hasn’t sunk in yet,” said Burns. “But, like Zach Wrightsil said, it is sinking in slowly. And, I am looking forward to getting that feeling again, somehow, some way.”
Loyola will celebrate its newly-crowned national champions on campus Thursday afternoon.