March Madness: Oakland's Greg Kampe says Louisville fans bought $8K in Golden Grizzlies gear after upset of Kentucky

In college sports fandom, only one feeling rivals that of the thrill of victory by your favorite team.

That would be the agony and misery of your school's most-hated rival.

Take, for example, Louisville.

Louisville fans have nothing to cheer for in this year's men's NCAA tournament. The Cardinals are mired in perhaps the worst slump in program history, fresh off an 8-24 season that secured a last-place finish in the ACC and the dismissal of head coach Kenny Payne. They didn't sniff Selection Sunday.

But on Thursday, there was plenty for Louisville fans to cheer against. That was arch-rival Kentucky, which faced a 14th-seeded Oakland team determined to eliminate the Wildcats short of the NCAA tournament's second weekend for a fourth straight season.

Oakland succeeded via an 80-76 win in the biggest upset of the tournament thus far, further extending head coach John Calipari's March misery. The Golden Grizzlies picked up a bunch of Louisville fans in the process.

Take it from Oakland head coach Greg Kampe. The longest-tenured coach in college basketball told reporters on Friday that Oakland's website crashed in the aftermath of its win over Kentucky. A lot of that traffic came from Louisville fans, who swarmed the site to buy up Golden Grizzlies gear.

"Our university website crashed last night," Kampe said. "Crashed. That's what this does. We also sold $8,000 worth of T-shirts to Louisville last night.

"Think about that. Honest to God. They buy the T-shirts and they put the credit card in — Louisville, Louisville, Louisville. So I don't know. Next year when Louisville and Kentucky play, I don't know if everybody's gonna show up in an Oakland shirt or what. I have no idea."

We have an idea. And we think Kampe's hypothesis is spot-on. Look for plenty of Oakland shirts on Louisville's campus and the next time the Cardinals and Wildcats play.

Oakland's Greg Kampe is feeling the whirlwind of coaching a Cinderella team. (Charles LeClaire/Reuters)
Oakland's Greg Kampe is feeling the whirlwind of coaching a Cinderella team. (Charles LeClaire/Reuters)

Kampe went on to detail his own personal experience in the aftermath of the program-altering win. It sounds like he's enjoying every minute of it. Even if it is exhausting.

"I have not been asleep yet. I have not been to bed. And I have not stopped talking. I like to talk. I talk a lot, but it's getting ridiculous. Every 15 minutes, I've got a Zoom or something.

"But it's really cool, and it's great for Oakland. This is just unbelievable for our university."