The fervor over the Jesuit basketball team's state championship season reached a new level of euphoria Tuesday afternoon.
Beneath a shroud of secrecy, Houston Rockets PG Jeremy Lin made a 90-minute cameo Tuesday at the Tiger Palace, where he engaged in a pickup game with the seniors from Jesuit's 2013 Class 5A state title squad.
According to a news release on Jesuit's website, the appearance was arranged in part by Tigers alumnus Nick Plasencia, a former Lin classmate at Harvard. A stipulation of the appearance, school spokesman Pete Young said, was that no local media be informed.
"The guys were absolutely thrilled for the opportunity to play with an NBA player they could relate to," Tigers coach Neal Goldman said.
"Lin was very generous to say afterwards that he could see why the team was so successful because of their high IQ and maturity. Later on he got a kick out of watching clips of the Blue Tide (Jesuit's student cheering section)."
Undrafted out of Harvard, Lin, who averaged 13.1 points and 6.4 assists this past season for Houston, became an overnight national phenomenon while with the Knicks the previous winter.
Plugged into the starting lineup due to an assortment of injuries, he averaged 22.5 points and 8.7 assists in his first 12 starts, leading a floundering Knicks team to a 9-3 mark and earning consecutive appearances on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
"It was a great experience to play with someone whose game is on a level where I'd like mine to be soon," said senior G Devin Harris, who signed last month with East Tennessee State. "He's very quick and explosive and knows the game very well."
Photo provided by Jesuit High School