Apr 3, 2014
01:11 PM
Connecticut Today

Anatomy of the Three Sweep: UConn Men's Basketball Celebration Goes Viral

 Anatomy of the Three Sweep: UConn Men's Basketball Celebration Goes Viral

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

University of Connecticut Huskies fans celebrate following the last-second win against the Florida Gators during the game at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion on Dec. 2, 2013 in Storrs.

Forget learning how to Dougie.

There’s a new dance craze sweeping the nation (or at least Connecticut), thanks to the UConn men’s basketball team’s improbable run to the Final Four of the NCAA tournament. The Huskies play Florida Saturday and tip-off is set for 6:09 p.m.

The dance move/celebration is called the Three Sweep and it consists of putting three fingers up, leaning over with your hands close to the floor, and then moving back and forth in a sweeping motion. It started as a celebration on the Huskies bench following three-point baskets by the team and went viral after UConn’s upset win over Michigan State, which allowed the Huskies to advance to the Final Four.

See a video of the UConn bench introducing the nation to the Three Sweep after a Shabazz Napier three-pointer

Also see our story UConn vs. Florida in Final Four: Huskies Better on NCAA Conversion Rate

And our October 2013 pre-season cover story that anticipated this great season:

UConn Men's Basketball Coach Kevin Ollie: The Overachiever

Now the Three Sweep appears poised to follow in the footsteps of other sports inspired cultural phenomena (remember Tebow-ing?).

In preparation for UConn’s game Saturday against Florida, we’ve put together a guide to the Three Sweep. Read on and in no time you’ll be leaning forward, waving your arms over the floor in style (or at least as much style as a person can muster bent over waving their arms above the floor).

The Origins:

The celeb-rove (celebration + move) was invented by UConn freshman (and in our opinion) cultural visionary Terrence Samuel.

"At first, I was just doing it when [Niels Giffey] hit a three," Samuel told The Hartford Courant Tuesday. "But then the games started becoming more intense, so I just do it any time anyone hits a three. It helps keep the bench pumped and motivating the team." 

(Left: Terrence Samuel #3 and Lasan Kromah #20 of the Connecticut Huskies react late in the game against the Iowa State Cyclones during the regional semifinal of the 2014 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 28, 2014 in New York City. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The Technique: 

According to Samuel, Three Sweeping is easy; just put three fingers out, and swing your arms in a sweeping motion. Though Samuel leaves it at that, we’d like to add that it helps to get into a athletic stance, then let your arms hang limp and rope like as you swing them.

To Three Sweep Or Not:

Do Three Sweep to celebrate all things Huskies related.

Don’t Three Sweep when the enthusiasm of the celebration garners the attention of the authorities, as is the case in the video below: 

Do Three Sweep following UConn victories and successful three-pointers. 

Don’t Three Sweep after every big basket UConn makes, whether it’s a three or not; let’s save this celebration for three-pointers so it doesn't get overused.

Do Three Sweep to celebrate non-basketball achievements, especially if they are Connecticut-related and have to do with the number three. Example: “Dude, I’m visiting three Connecticut wineries this weekend.”

Don’t Three Sweep if you get the chance to meet President Barack Obama. The president probably has nightmares about the Three Sweep after UConn’s victory over Michigan State ruined his March Madness bracket. But hey, at least the members of Huskies nation were good sports about it. They could have tweeted a Three Sweep video to the President Obama, but instead they sent this conciliatory tweet:


Contact me by email eofgang@connecticutmag.com and follow me on Twitter, and connect with Connecticut Magazine on Twitter, on Facebook and Google +

Anatomy of the Three Sweep: UConn Men's Basketball Celebration Goes Viral

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