ST. LOUIS, Missouri – Three schools, one tournament and thousands of fans flocking from all over Kansas to St. Louis to see their teams play. But no matter who you’re cheering for, one thing is certain:
“It’s definitely a win-win for the state of Kansas, seeing them all here,” said Jordyn Miller, one of the fans in St. Louis.
“Rock Chalk and Smile” read one welcome sign for the Jayhawks as fans waited excitedly for their team to come out.
On Thursday afternoon, fans cheered on the team as they practiced.
“It feels awesome, I graduated in 2011, I’m a huge Kansas basketball fan, grew up a huge fan my whole life so it feels awesome to be here,” said Rachel Toby, a Kansas fan.
Toby, like many students, made their way from all over Kansas to see their teams hopefully dominate and make their way to the next stage of the tournament.
Fans of all ages took pictures and got high fives all in good spirits and all hoping for a great outcome with their team on top and with three Kansas schools here the odds are in their favor.
“I think having all three major universities, you know, represented here at the NCAA tournament, it’s extremely exciting. I mean to have both have WSU, KU and K-State all here,” said Steven Hughes another Kansas fan.
“It’s great, I mean, Kansas pride all the way, I’m so happy that all those teams got into the tournament. WSU has had a fantastic year, waiting to see how far they go but rooting for my Jayhawks all the way,” said Hughes.
Friday night will be a big night for Kansas fans statewide as the Jayhawks take on Eastern Kentucky. Friday could also produce a potential match-up between two of the three Kansas teams.
It’s the moment fans from all over Wichita have been waiting for watching their team get a second chance to go all the way.
“There’s so many doubters that we just gotta prove it on the court, but one bad game, you’re out you know,” said Rick Smith, a Wichita State fan.
But Wichita State fans say they expect their team to pull through and show that they didn’t go 34-0 for nothing.
“It’s very surreal moment, I went last year to LA and coming here being a one seed, I feel like we have a lot more expectations on our backs so it’ll be interesting to see how we pull out of them,” said Maddie Vosburgh, another WSU fan.
While some are focused on the Shockers, others have their eyes on another Kansas school and are eyeing the possibility of a long awaited match up.
“It’s pretty exciting for Kansas, for me it’s tough sometimes so, pretty big rivalry, K-State and KU play two or three times a year, and WSU doesn’t get in on that,” said Chris Porter, a Kansas State fan.
“It’s just one of those things you probably won’t see for quite a while,” said Jordyn Miller, another K-State fan.
It would be a long awaited match-up and Kansas would be divided for a game but like Miller said, “It’s definitely a win-win for the state of Kansas, seeing them all here.”