Writer: Stewart Mandel
Game: Xavier vs. Georgia
Post time: 12:30 p.m.
WASHINGTON D.C. -- For me, there’s nothing more exciting -- and surreal -- than showing up at an arena for the first day of the NCAA tournament. It was like Christmas morning for basketball fans here Thursday, with all variety -- Xavier (by far the best represented so far), Georgia, Duke, Purdue, Baylor -- decked out in their school colors while descending on the Verizon Center at 11:30 in the morning in downtown Washington.
As I entered the arena myself, I watched the frigid Xavier cheerleaders in full uniform dash for the entrance, Georgia’s dance team -- quite frankly, just one step shy of an NBA-caliber -- warming up in a corridor adjacent to the court and familiar media faces from around the country scurry to find their seat on press row.
March Madness at its finest. Let the games begin.