The Southern Jaguars are living the dream of playing in the NCAA Tournament once again.
"Last night we're coming back in town and all of a sudden we're going to the watch party and the bus stops! So it's completely back to normalcy, you know because a lot of stuff is being going on for us this year," said Southern head coach and acting Athletic Director Roman Banks before heading back on the road again.
The Jaguars loaded up the bus once more Monday afternoon for the quick turnaround, taking off for Dayton so they could arrive before Tuesday's official practice and news conference at the arena. Only senior guard Christopher Hyder was around for the Jaguars' near upset of No. 1 Gonzaga back in 2013.
Banks said there's not much time to prepare for a team that plays a drastically different style from what his team is used to seeing.
"We're two different style of teams. They're a Princeton style of offense," said Banks. "They like to play pressing style offense. They like to go for backdoors. They like to fade screen and back screen. So, that's a different type of element than we've seen in a long time. So, they're going to test us and you have to have a little bit more discipline on defense."
Holy Cross (10-19) was a 9-seed in the Patriot League tournament and needed four wins to claim its conference tournament and advance to the tournament, but they were spread over nine days. Holy Cross has been done since last Wednesday, allowing the team to rest for almost a week, while Southern's three conference tournament wins in less than 72 hours just wrapped up Saturday night.
"It's what you want when you come to college is basketball, and right now it's just basketball, basketball and basketball. That's what you want. If you're tired we've just got to suck it up and get some rest. This is our rest day and be ready to play on Wednesday."
WAFB's Damon Cutno is on the road with the Jags and will have the latest from Tuesday's news conferences and practice ahead of Wednesday's 5:40 p.m. tipoff on TruTV. With a win Wednesday, Southern would head to Spokane to face No. 1 Oregon Friday.
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