The Origin of the Tunnel Dance

26 Jan

We still don’t know where the tunnel dance has gone, but we do know how it started.

Here are the clues so far: the dance started its vacation in Hawaii, and somehow it is Rodney McGruder’s fault that it has taken a leave of absence.

Martavious Irving appeared poised to give more details, but granting the petition of teammate Rodney McGruder, who shook his head and laughed as he sat beside Irving in the media room at Bramlage Coliseum, he stopped short of telling the rest of the “long” story.

However, he did explain how the beloved tunnel dance began.

In 2009, McGruder and Irving’s freshman year, the Wildcats were 7-1 heading into a home game against Xavier. It would be their last contest in the supportive arena of Bramlage before back-to-back road games against No. 17 UNLV and Alabama.

But as the Kansas State players waited in the tunnel for the signal to run out onto the court, Irving saw that something was wrong.

“We just looked like we didn’t want to be there,” Irving said.

He began to lighten the mood by messing with his teammates, and suddenly Jordan Henriquez started banging on the door.

“So I just started dancing around,” Irving explained.

While this was going on, the nearby cameraman had turned on his feed, and just like that a team moment became a source of excitement to the whole arena.

“All we could hear was just people screaming, going crazy,” Irving recalled. “I was surprised, but I didn’t care. We started doing it because we actually came out and played Xavier really well that game. So it just stuck.”

In case you’ve forgotten the tunnel dance in the time it’s been on vacation, here is one of many videos of it from YouTube.


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