If you are a high school basketball fan you know what I am talking about. Tuesday and Friday nights from November through February are spent on the road or at home with your team. The dates go on the calendar early so you are sure not to miss an inbound pass or a whistle of any game.
I have often wondered what makes a good basketball fan. Is it watching your son or daughter; grandson or granddaughter; nieces or nephews; reliving your own high school sports career; support of high school athletes in your community or just a love for the game.
Our community is blessed with long-time sports fans who have attended sporting events for years. I enjoy seeing them at every game and even look to their area of the gym to see if they are there for the evening.
Where would our schools be without fan support for our students? What fun would it be for our kids to play in an empty gym with no cheering fans to back them? I look forward to the fan "Madness" even if it's not March. But there is nothing quite like sub-state playoff time. The fans, the players, the coaches, the cheerleaders all seem to be at seasons peak and ready to knock off their competitors showing their style and passion for the game.
The young coaches we have today work to put the best team on the court. I love to see their competitive nature, something that must go along with coaching for a person to be any good at it. Along with great coaches come great games and I have been able to see many of them while at my public address announcing job at the local high school. I have met some of the greatest fans, coaches and players in the area and the state while they show an example of what their years of practicing basketball has prepared them for.... and that is March Madness.
There is no bigger way to get attention paid to your school than through sports. A good team gets your school noticed, more than noticed, it get's you on the 10 o'clock news, Catch it Kansas, Internet, Newspapers, Twitter, Facebook and more.
This year as in the past I will faithfully cheer for my Panther girls and boys and coaches Lynn Vick and Ryan Duft to compete with the heart of a champion as they begin their sub-state play. The hours of entertainment they have given me over they years has often been a conversation starter as we go over play after play on the way home from the game and on the phone with long distance fans who want to be filled in about the panthers and how their performance was that night.
The coaches and players are ready for March. Parents, grandparents, fans, cheerleaders, athletic directors, principals, concession stand workers, ticket takers and custodians are ready too. Get to the games when you can, you never know what you might miss! If you can't make it in person listen on the radio. Cheer for your team, support your students, teachers, administrators and show school pride. It will be fun being part of MARCH MADNESS! You might have something to talk about until the season starts again in November!