FORT MYERS, Fla. - Local FGCU Eagles fans are still moving into place for Friday night's game. This includes students who will suffer through a long bus ride and some fortunate fans who caught a flight out of Dunk City.
By bus or by plane, FGCU fans are ready to paint the Lone Star State blue and green.
"I don't even care that this bus ride is like 20 hours," senior Richa Srivasta said. "I'm so pumped to be going to Texas right now."
Students piled into buses thursday afternoon. $350 gets them to Dallas, a hotel room, a ticket to the game and the experience of a lifetime.
"It's really something special to see this kids do what they are doing
and to be there, actually be there, is going to be really cool," senior Jason Grant said.
Over at Southwest Florida International Airport, it was easy to spot fans. They were all decked out in Eagles gear as they boarded the plane to Dallas.
"We couldn't make it last weekend and we said if we win, we are
definitely going this weekend," FGCU booster Duane Davis said. "I'm hoping we don't come back until Monday."
Despite hopes for an extended stay, most packed light.
"Just Eagles clothes," FGCU booster Dean Schreiner said. "That's it."
Perhaps a coincidence, they checked in at American Eagle ticket counter. Some booked tickets Sunday
"Even though they had a nice lead, I waited until the buzzer, and booked
the tickets," Schreiner said.
For others, it was a little more spur of the moment.
"Yesterday at 4:00," season ticket holder Ed Lantz said.
After a few fans practiced their FGCU Chicken Dance, they all posed for a
picture at the gate, excited to show Texans what the letters FGCU really stand for.
"We've been boosters for the Eagles since 2005 so we've been really
excited seeing the changes through all the divisions," Schreiner said. "Then, going
Division I was just incredible. I never thought we'd get there this fast
to the Sweet Sixteen."
If the Eagles win Friday night, students who rode on the bus will stay to watch the Eagles play sunday night in the Elite Eight.