It’s March Madness – and Sweet Sixteen – Time! Doug Hennes '77 March 11, 2009 How do I know when spring is nearing? It’s March Madness time!During the long, cold winters living in North Dakota and Minnesota, basketball carried me through! From my old playing days at the University of North Dakota, practice, weights and games made the seemingly long winter season go by fast. It’s hard to believe those days were nearly a decade ago. Time flies! My playing days are long past, but basketball is still how I make it through the winters, whether it be watching St. Thomas men’s and women’s basketball, Gopher basketball or any college basketball games, for that matter. The excitement and energy in a basketball arena make my winter blues go away.Basketball always has played a significant role in my life. March was something I looked forward to every year. March flies by with all the great games on TV, which is probably good considering we just had more snow this week. I’m ready for spring! I love the Cinderella stories and big upsets, but I also enjoy the teams that played consistently well throughout the season – like our very own Tommies.It has been fun to watch (and cheer on) the UST men’s team throughout the year. As we well know, our Tommies are an astounding 29-0 going into Friday’s NCAA Sweet Sixteen game against Puget Sound after winning their fourth MIAC regular season and playoff titles in a row. Wow! As an ex-basketball player, I understand how challenging it is to go undefeated during the regular season, but this Tommie team has remained focused and poised. Outstanding!There has been a buzz around campus and a certain level of excitement that one can attribute to the madness of March. I see how much the students, staff, faculty and alumni have a great sense of pride in our institution and our team. I want to wish Coach Steve Fritz and the team the best of luck as they pursue their goals. Although I will not be able to be at the tournament this weekend, I will be on pins and needles to hear how they do!A special note to the seniors (Brett, B.J., Lonnie and Alex): Congratulations on an amazing season! As my dad would say, “Leave it all out on the court.” Good luck. And let the madness of March begin! Go Tommies!