No it’s not what you’re thinking. And it’s not back-to-school as a certain office supply store would have you believe.  It’s March Madness.  It’s spring. It’s college basketball.  It’s the best.

Now I have to confess that it’s not quite as much fun this year because my beloved Pitt Panthers did not have a good year.  But given the fun and joy this team has provided over the past decade I’m not among those who would have you believe the program is doomed.  On to next year for the Panthers and Hail to Pitt.

What I do have this year is my other alma mater – the Ohio Bobcats.  Stand up and Cheer! Odds are stacked against the ‘cats but I am looking forward to watching them play and hopefully pull off a surprise win or two (or five)!

I had the pleasure of attending all four games of the regional here in Pittsburgh yesterday and completely enjoyed the experience.  The Syracuse-UNC Asheville game was one for the ages and I fear the underdogs got jobbed big time by bad officiating.

This is the first NCAA Tournament I’ve gone to without having a rooting interest in the house so I was just able to enjoy the basketball – and the crowd. No nerves about my team winning. Just a great day of hoops – though 3 of the 4 games overall left a lot to be desired in terms of suspense.  What a place for people watching this one was.  Guys in suits who had ducked out of work for the afternoon.  Kids playing hooky from school.  Fans from as far away as Spokane, Washington and as close as the one guy from Pittsburgh who actually is a Gonzaga alum.  A big shout out to the students from Loyola (Maryland) who were the best fans in the house.  They made a late night tip off fun and exciting – if only their team had hung in a little longer.   Bigger shout out to the gritty performance by UNC Asheville which made for the best game of the day or night.  As a Pitt fan, I can say that I wasn’t sad to see the WVU fans head home with their tails between their legs after a lot of bragging about “taking over” the arena.

But what yesterday did most was give me a recharge from the work week, let me enjoy some basketball with good friends.  And dream of next year’s March Madness when I’ll be traveling to whatever venue is hosting the good guys.