RALEIGH, NC (WMBF) - This week, Coastal Carolina joins Duke, Virginia, Tennessee and several other big name schools at PNC Arena for a weekend of games as the NCAA Tournament is off and running.
Friday night's game will be broadcast in front of the nation, but on the day before, the arena belonged to the Chants for a little while as they worked in a practice session. Media from throughout the country was on hand to study Coastal Carolina as the team tries to get put on the map. But nothing can do that better than getting a win tomorrow night. However, as for right now, head coach Cliff Ellis is pointing out to his players just how important this moment is in their lives.
"I want our guys to enjoy it. This has been great for the university, been great for the Grand Strand area, and it's a special time," he said.
On the other side of the court tomorrow night, Virginia will be waiting. The Cavs are in search of their first victory in the NCAA Tournament since 2007. UVA's offense has been on target much of the season, but the reason they're a one seed and ranked fourth in the nation is because of their scoring defense. Virginia is tops in the country, allowing just more than 55 points per game. It expects to be difficult, but CCU thinks they've handled similar challenges before
"We'll go at this team the same way we went at Ole Miss," added Ellis. "The same way we went at Minnesota, we'll do it all the same way."
Coastal lost by two to Ole Miss and by ten at Minnesota earlier this season. Tipoff against Virginia is approximately 9:25 Friday night.