An Inside Look

March 11, 2005

Over the next 48 hours, the spotlight that’s shining so brightly on hardwood across the country will focus squarely on the selection committee for the 2005 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament and its chairman, UI Director of Athletics Bob Bowlsby.

Sports Illustrated’s Luke Winn offers interested college basketball junkies a look “inside the bunker” in Indianapolis.

“On Wednesday night, inside an Indianapolis Italian restaurant named Iaria’s — a 72-year-old joint with an exterior of bricks and neon-signage — the work of the 2005 NCAA tournament selection committee will begin,” writes Winn.

“The evening, however, is not spent marking up tourney brackets with bubble teams and bolognese-sauce thumbprints. Greg Shaheen, the NCAA’s vice president of Division I men’s basketball, says the committee goes to Iaria’s, which bills its spaghetti as famous, to `carbo-load.’

“It’s a nutritional strategy — wolfing down a belly-full of pasta — employed by distance runners on the eve of a race, and although Shaheen uses the term somewhat in jest, the selection committee members are in fact gearing up for a grueling, four-day mental marathon. Wednesday is their last supper before hunkering down in a suite on the 15th floor of The Westin Indianapolis and emerging Sunday, with the much-awaited — and, once revealed, much-scrutinized — tournament bracket.”

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