Big Ten Tournament: Champs!

When I got into my car to go to an assignment Monday afternoon and glanced over at the photographer passes from the Big Ten Tournament title game sitting on my passenger seat, I felt like I was living a double life. Big time, big deal photographer on weekends, small town newspaper guy during the week. It almost didn’t seem real, it was that awesome, and that far from my normal comings and goings.

The finger doesn’t lie.

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Big Ten Tournament: Michigan

I try and stay jaded, I really do. But after the epic Buckeye Bash at Champps on Saturday, I was ready to go. I was ready to go kick some photographic arse.

My trip to the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis came about over lunch, and within a few days I was giddy for my first big time basketball game. I have never even been to an NBA game, and the biggest basketball game I had been to at that point was an Ohio High School state final four.

And this, my friends, blows that away.

How awesome it was going to be I had no clue. But by the time I was out of the Buckeye Bash, I knew it was going to be pretty darn cool. The bash started slowly, but built to the point it was standing room only, with cheering and cheerleaders, the band, Brutus, and a handful of Buckeye legends. It was hot and loud, and everything a pep rally should be. I was pumped.

Of course there was a slight letdown after, since there was almost 2 hours before game time when I got to Conseco Fieldhouse. I went to have a look at the court, and then set about finding a high vantage point to take an overview photo of the empty building.

I told the media elevator operator lady to take me to the highest point I could go. So up we went, and she let me out in what looked like a closet. She said around the corner was a catwalk. So I went around the corner, passing boxes labeled Christmas decorations and an empty gum ball dispenser. I found a set of stairs and took them, and before I knew it (well, after ducking under a huge pipe) I was on a catwalk overlooking the court. Waaay up there.

Waaaay up.

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