KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Jeff Capel said it, then Todd Bozeman, his coaching rival tonight at the Sprint Center, said it again.
The NCAA Tournament is the greatest sporting show on Earth.
"We’re excited to be here in Kansas City,” Capel said Wednesday on the eve of the NCAAs. But he wasn’t talking about barbeque at Arthur Bryant’s or touring the Truman library or strolling around the city of fountains.
This national frenzy, which reaches from the tiniest hamlets to even the Oval Office, is fueled by basketball.
"Excited to be a part of the greatest sporting event I think in all of athletics,” said Capel, the coach who has Oklahoma a No. 2 seed in the South Regional. The Sooners play Morgan State at 8:40 tonight.
Oklahoma State gets its bats with an 11:25 a.m. Friday game against Tennessee in the East Regional at another college hoops hotbed, Dayton, Ohio. But again, it’s not the location that has the Cowboys juiced. It’s the event.
"It’s a very special time,” said Bozeman. "Very special event, one of the true great events in all of sports. They should really cherish the opportunity.”
The NCAA Tournament so enchants America, its leader took out time Tuesday from the Afghan War and the Wall Street bailout to share his bracket projections with ESPN.