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UH Cougars Get Ready For March Madness

Along with Texas Southern University, the University of Houston represents the Bayou City in the NCAA basketball tournament

  • Coach Kelvin Sampson oversees the Cougars' last practice at home before their trip to Wichita, Kansas, where they will play San Diego State in the first round of the NCAA tournament (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    Coach Kelvin Sampson oversees the Cougars' last practice at home before their trip to Wichita, Kansas, where they will play San Diego State in the first round of the NCAA tournament (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • Nineteen NCAA tournament banners hang at the wall at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility. There will soon be a 20th. (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    Nineteen NCAA tournament banners hang at the wall at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility. There will soon be a 20th. (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • UH head coach Kelvin Sampson (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    UH head coach Kelvin Sampson (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • The UH Cougars practice at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    The UH Cougars practice at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • Guard Corey Davis Jr. practices free-throws at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility on the University of Houston campus (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    Guard Corey Davis Jr. practices free-throws at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility on the University of Houston campus (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • Forward Nura Zanna practices free-throws at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility on the University of Houston campus (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    Forward Nura Zanna practices free-throws at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility on the University of Houston campus (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
  • Galen Robinson Jr., point guard, University of Houston (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)
    Galen Robinson Jr., point guard, University of Houston (Photo Credit: Florian Martin)

Two Houston teams are in the NCAA basketball tournament – better known as March Madness.

Texas Southern University will meet North Carolina Central Wednesday (5:40 p.m., TruTV) and the University of Houston will play San Diego State on Thursday (6:20 p.m., TBS).

A day before their flight to Wichita, Kansas, the Cougars were practicing at the Guy V. Lewis Development Facility on the UH campus.

Nineteen banners adorn the gym wall – each for one NCAA tournament appearance since 1956.

Soon, there will be a 20th; it's the first in eight years.

Coach Kelvin Sampson said it's special, not just for the team but for the university.

"It is hard to make this tournament. It really is," he said. "And our school made it. So if you're an alumnus, a booster, fan of the University of Houston, it's a source of pride. It's a big deal."

Point guard Galen Robinson agreed.

"‘Big' isn't the word," he said. "That's extraordinary. That's more realistic. It's huge for our program and it'll be big if we can win and advance."

How far will they go? Coach Sampson said he has no idea.

"If I knew that, I wouldn't play the game."

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