Ross Maak: Got tix? If not, take in practice |

Ross Maak: Got tix? If not, take in practice

So, looking forward to a little March Madness? In case you haven’t heard by now, there will be a couple games from this season’s NCAA Men’s Championship Tournament played just down the hill at Arco Arena in Sacramento.

Judging by how well the Kings have played so far this season, this might just be your best chance at seeing some real basketball this year.

Unfortunately, the college games are all sold out. That leaves you with three choices.

First, you can curl up on the couch with a bag of Sour Cream and Cheddar Ruffles (or two) and a frosty beverage (or six) and enjoy all the games by simply punching that button on the remote.

Second, you can drive over the hill and head for Nevada, pull into the closest sports book and watch every game simultaneously on 15 different televisions. It’s a bit of sensory overload, but it can be worth it. (If you choose this option, always remember the cardinal rule in Nevada: $2,500 on red! Then you can spend your winnings at the sports book. If you lose, go back home and try the first option.)

The third and final option may be more fun. But you may only choose this one if you’re a die-hard fan that bleeds basketball orange. They say practice makes perfect, but in this case, practice makes for entertainment.

And the price is right, too. For those of you who are really, really excited about March Madness; for those of you who couldn’t get a ticket but still have the need to see some of today’s biggest college stars; for those of you who happen to be big, huge, foam-finger waving fans of the Golden Eagles from Oral Roberts; all of you can now head to Arco today, one day before the tournament even starts, and watch a 40-minute practice.

Each of the eight teams (George Washington, Washington State, Vanderbilt, UCLA, Indiana, Weber State and Gonzaga join Oral Roberts) will practice at Arco today starting at noon and wrapping up at 7:20 p.m. Tickets aren’t necessary and the practices are free.

Now I’m not nearly the March Madness fan my predecessor, Stacy Hicklin, was. Stacy could hardly sleep this time of year with the excitement leading up to the tournament. I, on the other hand, can hardly sleep with the anticipation of the upcoming baseball season.

Regardless, watching March Madness is addictive. It’s always fun to watch the Gonzagas or George Masons start knocking off the big boys, one by one.

But practice? I don’t think so. My couch is too comfortable. I mean, I might bleed orange, but it’s the orange color from the fake cheese they put on those Sour Cream and Cheddar Ruffles.


To contact Sports Writer Ross Maak, e-mail or call 477-4244. His column typically appears on Wednesdays.

Hoops action at Arco

Wednesday practices

11 a.m. – Doors open

Noon-12:40 p.m. – Oral Roberts

12:45-1:25 – George Washington

1:30-2:10 – Washington State

2:15-2:55 – Vanderbilt

4:25-5:05 – UCLA

5:10-5:50 – Indiana

5:55-6:35 – Weber State

6:40-7:20 – Gonzaga

Thursday games

10 a.m. – Doors open

11:40 a.m. – Washington State vs. Oral Roberts

30 min. later – Vanderbilt vs. George Washington

4:25 p.m. – UCLA vs. Weber State

30 min. later – Indiana vs. Gonzaga

Saturday games

1:30 p.m. – Doors open

2:55 p.m. – Game 1

5:25 p.m. – Game 2

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