Updated Wed, Mar 21, 2012 8:51 am
Andrew Stout’s work day couldn't get any better than when the Ohio University men's basketball team unexpectedly walked into the College Book Store in Athens Monday.
Stout is the shop’s license products buyer and has been looking out for new t-shirts since the Bobcats started the NCAA tournament.
One of the shirts says “Brackets Busted.” On the back it says: “Hoops, we did it again.”
Another shirt says “MichiGONE,” referring to the team’s victory over Michigan last week.
Sophomore guard Nick Kellogg seemed to like it. “We’re going to get one of those,” said Kellogg.
Ohio University’s success in the NCAA has led to booming business at the College Book Store, says Stout.
“We had so many customers hit our website,” Stout says. “Each time we won an NCAA game, it crashed our server for a while.”
But despite the crowdedness in the store, the streets of Athens are relatively empty: most students have left town for spring break.
Where will Ohio University’s students watch the Bobcats play?
OU student Lexy Nessenger plays in the university’s pep band and says she will attend the Sweet Sixteen in St. Louis, where the game will take place on Friday.
Nessenger says a lot of people have left town for Spring Break.
“Everyone’s kind of heartbroken that it‘s Spring Break time,” says Nessenger. “Because when we last won, I think Court Street was packed - from the pictures that I have seen. I think everyone would like to be watching it here in Athens but eventually they’re still going to catch the game at home.”
But Tim Binegar, Director of Development Patton College of Education at OU, says he thinks some students will come back to Athens on Friday.
“Just because it will be fun and exciting for them to watch the game here on campus,” says Binegar. “Hopefully, though, the alumni, faculty and students will go to St. Louis.”
“I’m guessing a lot of those kids are going to want to come back early,” Stout says, “so that they can watch the game on the campus with their friends and be a part of the celebration if they win.”
But even if the Bobcats journey ends at the Sweet Sixteen, Stout is already happy that they’ve gotten this far. He says he hopes the Bobcats will give North Carolina “one heck of a game.”
“I’d love to get to win,” Stout says. “But I feel like we’ve already won… I’m thrilled.”