MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Fans are getting behind their alma maters here in the Twin Cities as the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is in full swing.

Some dealt with the distraction of the tournament all day from their office cubicles. Others thought better, knowing productivity would be low, and took the day off of work.

Many basketball fans had two choices of how to take in the March Madness: From the comforts of the couch at home, or head to a local watering hole and enjoy the action with a cold beverage.

Some took the day off in secret, not wanting their wives to know, and others said they had nothing to hide.

“We were the first ones here at 10:15,” said Brad Gladhill from his bar stool at Joe Senser’s in Bloomington.

Gladhill and Brian Beckham have been going to Joe Senser’s to watch the NCAA Tournament for years. The two graduated from Iowa State, which is playing Connecticut in the tournament at 8 p.m. Thursday.

They both said even if the Cyclones weren’t in the tournament, they would still be at the bar watching all the action.

“It’s just the national buzz around it. It’s a major thing around the whole country. Everybody follows college basketball,” said Beckham.

“This is like my second Christmas. It’s like my favorite day of the year,” Gladhill said.

There was even a table of dedicated Harvard fans taking in the action and gearing up for the team’s Thursday game against Vanderbilt. The Crimson is having a great year and have been in the news lately with the success of Jeremy Lin in the NBA.

Harvard is making its first NCAA appearance in 66 years. Fred Easter played basketball for Harvard in the 1960s and couldn’t be more excited.

“I think it’s terrific. I just think it’s terrific. But I think Vanderbilt is going to be a rough day at the office,” he said.

March Madness is officially in full swing, and bar-goers wouldn’t have it any other way.


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