March Madness brings fans together in Birmingham no matter who they root for

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — It really is March Madness. Many fans are already mourning their broken supports, but still enjoy the camaraderie that the NCAA Tournament provides.

“I can go to a random place and hang out with guys I’ve never met, and we’re just watching basketball and having fun,” said Craig Joseph, a West Virginia fan from Florida.

Whether making the trip solo, coming into town last minute or using the games as a reason to see old friends, fans across the country are getting a taste of what Birmingham has to offer.

“It’s been beautiful,” said Travontez Thorington, a Paramount Bar employee. “A little hectic but beautiful. I love this for the city. It’s something I feel we should do every year. They love the people here, and some of them are thinking of moving here.”

Paramount said it saw huge crowds all day Thursday as people came and went to enjoy watching the tournament.

“I’m probably the only one with Maryland winning the group here,” said Andrew, a Terrapins fan. “But it was worth the trip to come here, to visit a friend, to see this place and this amazing city.”

Some might be rooting for upsets in these first-round games. But for others, early surprises have blown their stands.

“We’re ready to make history,” said Beth, a Northern Kentucky University fan. “We’re going to beat the number one seed (Thursday night).”

“I just saw Princeton win so I’m stuck,” said Mike, a NKU Cincinnati fan.

Some fans love to watch Cinderella races during the tournament.

“That means they’re hungry and they came to play and that’s the part of March Madness that makes it great,” said an Ohio State fan and Alabama native. “I don’t think anyone in the world is going to have a perfect (support).”

No matter how these games end, it’s still all smiles and laughter as fans are excited to see how the tournament unfolds.


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