Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Open Practice Day

I got up early to get on the media shuttle and head to the Verizon Center to pick up my media credentials. But, the shuttle never came. So, today basically consisted of several trips via Metro to haul all of the equipment to the media center. At least I don't have to go to the gym this week.

Duke didn't start their open practice until after 4 p.m. By then, the seats were filled with a good number of Duke fans. The team practices are free and open to the public, which means it's a great chance for fans to see their favorite players and coaches up close. The cost of a ticket to an actual NCAA game is $237, according to the box office personnel. One family I spoke with spent $700 for the three of them to watch the games over the next few days.

One thing I did notice is that many of the Duke fans live near Washington, DC and have no affiliation with the school except for being a fan of the basketball team. The other thing I noticed is that the basketball players are a LOT taller than me, so I was very thankful that the locker room interviews are conducted sitting down…that actually puts them at my height level.

The television news crews are stationed in a room located right next to the arena, but the lighting in there is terrible. It feels like we're on the set of a horror movie, but I suppose it's better editing in dimmer settings.

The game tips off Thursday evening at 7:10 p.m. and I look forward to watching my first live NCAA game.

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