Orange Watch: Eastern path to the Final Four for Syracuse?

Item: The Verizon Center in D.C. selected by the NCAA to host the 2013 NCAA East Regional.

Good news for SU hoop fans as the Orange will be eligible to play in the East Regional next March.

The NCAA finally got around to naming a site almost 10 months before the event. With Georgetown’s home venue chosen over the Dome, which would have taken the Orange out of the East bracket, and Brooklyn’s soon-to-open Barclays Center to stage the games after Madison Square Garden, the NCAA’s first choice, was ruled out due to conflicting dates.

» More Orange Watch with Brad Bierman: A geography lesson for the NCAA

The university has submitted a bid to stage the 2015 East Regional in the Dome and it just played host in 2010. The NCAA didn’t feel comfortable going into the new building in Brooklyn without any experience of hosting a college basketball game, let alone the NCAA Tournament, leading to the surprise choice of the Verizon Center.

This year’s geographically-friendly path of Pittsburgh/Boston made it easier for northeast alumni and central New Yorkers to get to the games. Next year could be even easier with a potential for an I-95 jaunt of Philadelphia (second/third rounds) and Washington (regional), as the early stops on a potential road to the Final Four in Atlanta.

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About Brad Bierman 843 Articles
Now in his sixth decade of covering SU sports, Brad was sports director of WSYR radio for eight years into the early 1990s, then wrote the Orange Watch column for The Big Orange/The Juice print publication for 18 years. A Syracuse University graduate, Brad currently runs his own media consulting business in the Philadelphia suburbs. Follow him on Twitter @BradBierman.