Fans flock to UD Arena ahead of First Four tipoff

Big Tournament

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Basketball fans from across the country are descending upon the city of Dayton, Ohio, ahead of tonight’s First Four tipoff. UD Arena has been buzzing with activity since around 10 a.m. this morning.

Fans, friends, and families are ready to soak up every single moment of this tournament, and that excitement extends well-beyond the games themselves.

Kenika Sharpe and her entire North Carolina Central family are on a whirlwind trip, and this isn’t their first time traveling to Dayton for the First Four.

“We went to the selection show. Then we got back up Monday morning and came right here,” she said.

For Bison fans making the trip from North Dakota, Ohio itself was a change in scenery.

Fan Suzanne Brown told 2 NEWS, “When we were pulling in, one of the little boys we are traveling with said, ‘There’s grass! Why is there grass?’ We haven’t seen grass in six or seven months.”

Visiting fans were also shocked at the reception they got at area hotels.

“The welcome at the hotel was incredible. There were bagpipes, hotel workers cheering, welcome signs and treats for the kids and players. It has been great,” says Brown.

The First Four tends to be a unique blend of household schools and teams trying to make a name for themselves, and that in itself brings fans from all over.

“I’m a basketball junkie,” says Chris Kalb, who traveled from Lexington, Kentucky. “I like it because I’ve been to the Final Four, but the First Four you get to interact with the players and coaches. I enjoy that.”

Tipoff is set for 6:40 p.m.  

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Clear

Abbeville

28°F Clear Feels like 22°
Wind
6 mph N
Humidity
76%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Partly cloudy skies. Low 24F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph.
24°F Partly cloudy skies. Low 24F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph.
Wind
12 mph NNE
Precip
0%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Full
Clear

Crowley

28°F Clear Feels like 20°
Wind
7 mph NNE
Humidity
75%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Generally clear skies. Low 24F. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph.
24°F Generally clear skies. Low 24F. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph.
Wind
12 mph NNE
Precip
0%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Full
Clear

Opelousas

26°F Clear Feels like 20°
Wind
5 mph N
Humidity
79%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Partly cloudy. Low 23F. Winds light and variable.
24°F Partly cloudy. Low 23F. Winds light and variable.
Wind
12 mph NNE
Precip
0%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Full
Clear

Breaux Bridge

27°F Clear Feels like 18°
Wind
9 mph NNE
Humidity
81%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

Clear skies. Low 24F. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph.
24°F Clear skies. Low 24F. Winds NNE at 5 to 10 mph.
Wind
12 mph NNE
Precip
0%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Full
Clear

New Iberia

29°F Clear Feels like 18°
Wind
14 mph NNE
Humidity
78%
Sunrise
Sunset

Tonight

A few clouds from time to time. Low 34F. Winds light and variable.
26°F A few clouds from time to time. Low 34F. Winds light and variable.
Wind
7 mph NE
Precip
0%
Sunset
Moon Phase
Full

Local News

More Local

Sidebar

Trending Stories