You can enjoy the madness that is March from the comfort of your home, but by doing so you forgo the true spectacles that can really only be appreciated from the spirited arenas themselves. So far this week in Louisville's KFC Yum! Center, we've enjoyed some great moments. We've got mascots, cheerleaders, candid shots and fan posters. Enjoy these photos from the Wednesday and Thursday festivities.
Murray State's Donte Poole hits a half-courter during practice on Wednesday.
You've seen his grooming habits right?
There you go.
Clever fan of Jarrod Polson.
Thanks for the pose Anthony.
Coach John Calipari during practice.
Someone told them to arrive a little too early.
Cam the Ram of Colorado State.
Guys being guys.
Murray State cheerleaders and "Dunker" cheer on the crowd.
Murray State's Donte Poole breaks his nose, later returns to the game.
Racers had plenty of support in Thursday's game, including Big Blue Nation.
Post game interviews with Murray State.
Marquette Eagles' Pep Band.
The Marquette Golden Eagle.
I'm thinking more like mustard.
"If you don't quit screaming in my ear..."
"Cosmo" the Brigham Young Cougar.
An optimistic Racer fan.
Post-game interview with Marquette.
TBS commentators Verne Lundquist and Bill Raftery.
Western Kentucky entered the game with high energy.
Nanna Nanna Boo Boo.
The Wildcats enjoyed a heavy home court advantage at the YUM! Center.
One of many "Brow" signs.
A profesionally printed "Brow" sign.
The Western Kentucky cheerleaders.
The Hilltoppers were, well...toppled Thursday night by the Wildcats.
A Kentucky Wildcat huddle.
Kentucky Forward, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
Look closely enough and you will see daylight under Calipari's shoes. Nice 1-inch vertical Coach.
A quieted Hilltopper cheer squad nearing the end of Thursday's game.
Forward Anthony Davis shoots from the free stripe.
It was great to see three Kentucky teams play here in Louisville. Unfortunately the Hilltoppers had to bow out early leaving Murray State and Kentucky to fight for the Sweet Sixteen here in Louisville, while the U of L Cardinals will meet New Mexico in Portland.
Local radio station 102.3 the Max's morning talk show host George Lindsey (a Western Kentucky Alumni) said of his Hilltoppers before Thursday's matchup:
"I'm not sure the TOPPERS can 'shock the world' against UK, but this season has already had it's reward...getting Ray Harper as coach."
Lindsey also says he is loving the energy in the city of Louisville this week and wishes we could host every year.
I can't help but agree. Basketball is a rich tradition in this state and this year's representation is a testament to that. Good luck to the remaining Kentucky ball teams. Stay tuned for more NCAA Tournament coverage from Louisville.com tomorrow from the KFC Yum! Center.
Photos courtesy of: Michael Windle, Louisville.com