College hoops fans have been in the grips of March Madness all week as the annual NCAA Men's Basketball Championship series heads toward its pinnacle on Monday. But the Final Four games will be played today in San Antonio, Texas, between the sport's best teams, and the match-ups are expected to be terrific. Watching from your couch (the games will be aired on CBS) isn't nearly as exciting as taking in the games in the actual stadium, of course, but you can come close and do a good deed in the process at National Jewish Medical and Research Center's fifth annual Hoops and Hoopla at Invesco Field at Mile High, where both national semi-final games will be shown on 35 big-screen televisions, a nine-panel video wall and the Jumbotron. In addition to the games, there will be a gourmet buffet (with a "manly" menu, according to National Jewish spokeswoman Amy Hoffman), an open bar, a silent auction and fun and games like Pop-A-Shot, shuffle golf and Basketball Trainer Challenge, as well as Texas Hold 'em Sit n' Go poker tournaments and other gaming tables. It's not cheap individual tickets start at $275 but it's better than buying a last-minute flight to San Antonio, and the drinks are free! College sports fan-casual dress is encouraged, Hoffman says. The first game is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. today, but the doors at Mile High open at 3:30. For tickets or information, call 303-398-1897 or visit www.hoopsandhoopla.com.
Sat., April 5, 2008