Friday, March 16, 2007

Peter's report on NCAA Buffalo - Round 1 Thursday

Yep, an NCAA Subregional is about the best sporting event one can attend in their lifetime. I mean where else can one spend a day witnessing four games in one day spanning a twelve hour period of time and still leave the venue feeling as if they didn't get enough?

This is my fourth subregional attended and third one in Buffalo and the action of yesterday may have been the best first round I've ever attended. You had your "mid major scares power club before fading" game (DAV/MAR), your "dull and boring yet competitive" game (BUT/OLD), your "complete mismatch high seed v low seed" game (PIT/WRI), and your "memorable upset" game (DUK/VIR).

It was a memorable outing, and cheers to Buffalo as they seemed to correct the crying need to feed its patrons during the between sessions break with food stands just across the street, at Dunn Tire Park and with the help of an army of local volunteers to aid out of town fans in finding refreshments and such to cure their hunger pangs. And props go to the cops for coming to their senses and putting off the sniffles for another day.

And by the way are you puzzled by the acroynms above identifying the teams? Yep, such is what it's like to attempt to read the out of town scoreboard at the HSBC Arena. Unlike other difficulties from past NCAA events that have been tweaked and solved, this anomaly remains. The acronyms were difficult in '04, downright impossible during the '05 MAAC tournament(those who attended had to chuckle at the sight of scores of games featuring TEX against TEX and SOU vs. SOU). And this season fans were treated to the sight of EAS v. NOR...isn't it obvious to anyone that that is the acronyms for Eastern Kentucky v. North Carolina? That BYU is actually BRI? UNC is really NOR?

Heck, headlines across America this morning tooted the horn of giant killer VCU, yet if that game was in any other building but ours that scoreboard would have said "VIR". Can't you hear those students now....V! I! R!! V! I! R!!

This really shouldn't bug me, except that it has been an ongoing situation at the arena with no real attempt to fix despite numerous comments from media in the past. Perhaps with a brand new videoboard over center court/ice we'll get some new out of town boards with acroynms that are universally understood(outside of said venue).

In other news, had we been the type to actually gamble on this type of thing then I would have collected quite a pile in going four for four in picking Thursday's games. But since we're playing "for entertainment purposes only"...snicker, snicker.

Little over an hour until the greatest upset in tournament history commences, and roughly 21 hours until tipoff downtown.

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