All eyes were upon Texas Friday to watch the local teams try to advance in the NCAA Tournament.
From Offutt Air Force Base to banks, we're hearing about plenty of businesses hosting parties during this work day. If you were lucky enough to be away from work in time for the Nebraska tip-off at 11:40 a.m. from San Antonio, the bars were prepared. All DJs locations are hosting official alumni parties. At Aksarben Village, you can catch the action on the big screen, 45-feet big to be exact, at Aksarben Cinema.
“People love it,” says Aksarben Cinema marketing director Andrea Barstow. “The best one, we did a UNO hockey event and it turned into mini-arenas. People hung up banners, they were doing chants, it was very fun."
The Huskers were looking for their first-ever NCAA Tournament win. "It is going to mean the world to us,” said NU guard Tai Webster. “To be able to win one game here would be crazy. If we keep on winning that would be off the chain. We just need to focus on this first game and get this first win."
But it was not to be as Baylor beat Nebraska 74-60.
Aksarben Cinema opened one theater for fans to watch the Nebraska-Baylor game followed by Creighton-Louisiana-Lafayette. It won’t be much different from a sports bar experience with a full bar and dinner menu at the cafe. Admission is free, but with less than 300 seats, expect the theater to fill up fast.
"We have had a great run, I feel like this is our last chance to go out with a bang,” said Bluejay forward Doug McDermott. “We are going to make the most of this in a great city, San Antonio. We are looking forward to it."
At 8:50 p.m. Friday, Iowa State takes the floor, also in San Antonio, against North Carolina Central.
Knowing most everyone’s mind will be far from the books, St. Wenceslaus School in Omaha decided to make this a three-day weekend. Before students took off, it was time to learn about the schools taking the court.
In Mrs. Willmot's seventh-grade class, students had to write a report on one of the colleges in the tournament. They were assigned schools at random, much to the dismay of one diehard Creighton fan who got to learn a little more about the Huskers. "I learned that Nebraska's actually a pretty good school and their basketball team isn't too bad,” said Jack Abt. “They have one of their best teams this year, so it's not too bad this year, but I'm hoping for Creighton."
Mrs. Wilmot hopes the assignment broadened her students' horizons to start thinking about college and different opportunities each school has to offer.
While St. Wenceslaus canceled school Friday because of the tournament, students and staff in Bellevue got lucky. This was already a scheduled day off because of this week's parent-teacher conferences.