PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The CONSOL Energy Center is one of the host sites for the upcoming NCAA basketball tournament that can be seen on KDKA starting Thursday at noon.

Number one seed Syracuse, second-seeded Ohio State, and West Virginia University are among the teams coming to town.

Sunday’s Penguins game is history, but before the cleanup was done, crews inside the arena were hustling to put down the hardwood.

“This is a little bit different. We have someone else’s court coming in. The NCAA brings the court. We have a special setup on the floor with the media all on the floor,” CONSOL Energy Center General Manager Jay Roberts said.

The first step is literally putting the floor in place. It’s a 225-piece giant jig-saw puzzle that when complete, makes Pittsburgh ready for March Madness.

“It’s always exciting to see who you get. Everybody waits. I found out like everybody else did by watching the 6 o’clock news. The fact that we got West Virginia as our most local group, that means the place will be hopping for sure,” Roberts said.

“It’s fun stuff for some people in the company. We get to travel to the tournaments for the NCAA. My first stop is here, get this set up, get ready, then my next stop is Kingston, R.I. for the girl’s Eastern Regional,” Mike Kruse from Spaulding Sporting Goods said.

It takes an awful lot of people to transform the venue to make it ready for hoops.

Not all the jobs are as high-flying as covering advertiser logos in the upper deck. NCAA rules also require every ad on every cup-holder in the arena to be covered by a black sticker.

Once the work is all done, the people of Pittsburgh will know that college hoops has come to our hometown.


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