DETROIT (WWJ) – March Madness is underway – and on the eve of their opening-round contest, Michigan State University held an open practice Thursday afternoon in Detroit.

Spartan fans watching MSU men’s basketball practice a day ahead of NCAA Tournament play at Little Caesars Arena. (WWJ/Sandra McNeill)

Terry Hamilton is a big Spartan fan and says it was a great chance to look around the arena and see his team.

“I think it’s fantastic — I was going to buy tickets but this free thing fits me just perfect,” laughed Hamilton.

Bill Hagan took his five kids out of class — his ‘starting five’ — to get a taste of the NCAA tournament experience:

“They are all right here, this is our starting five here,” he told WWJ’s Sandra McNeill. “We have all five of our kids here today and my wife.”

He and his wife grew up in East Lansing and went to MSU and see this as a memorable day for his family.

“You don’t get this experience very often and to have it so close and have Michigan State be so good this year.”

His son chimed in as if on cue saying it was the best birthday ever for him.

With the Spartans getting a chance to play in front of a home crowd — fans could experience some the excitement of the tournament — without having to pay tournament prices — or any fee for that case — as event was open to the public.

Dee Morris, a Spartan grad, said she was “really glad we got a chance to come down here to watch them practice ’cause we could not afford to come down here tomorrow night – so this is really exciting for the boys.”

Tickets to Friday night’s game start at $300 at Little Caesars Arena. WWJ will have live coverage as the Michigan Wolverines take on Montana tonight starting at 9:15 p.m.


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