George Mason goes ‘Back to the RAC’

Maryland’s loss in Tuesday night’s NIT semifinals means there’s just one D.C. area team remaining in the college basketball postseason. That would be the George Mason Patriots, who will host Santa Clara in Game 2 of the best-of-three CBI finals Wednesday night at the RAC.

What’s that, you ask?

“Encompassing 120,000 square feet, the Recreation and Athletic Complex (RAC) boasts three gymnasiums, racquetball courts, squash courts, and a two story fitness gallery,” the school’s site notes. “Recently renovated and re-opened in 2009, The RAC serves as the home for Mason Recreation programs, three intercollegiate sports (tennis, volleyball, and wrestling), ROTC Offices, as well as a classroom and offices for the School of Recreation, Health and Tourism.”

There’s also a cardio gallery, a martial arts/dance room, a yoga/pilates room, a Freshens smoothie bar, and a “1,500-seat multipurpose venue for men’s and women’s varsity volleyball and wrestling” and, when needed, postseason men’s basketball games.

“I’m still trying to gather as to whether this could be really cool, because the RAC will be packed to capacity with 1,500 fans, or if this is just plain embarrassing for the program,” wrote the George Mason hoops blog.

“Will this be kind of cool to see a college game in such a venue or just kind of embarrassing for the Atlantic 10′s newest member and the CBI?” another blog asked this week.

Put another way, do you think this would be sort of cool, or just a bit embarrassing? Marginally cool, or virtually embarrassing? A lil’ cool, or a gosh-darn load of embarrassing?

In any case, based on venue size, the school is apparently warning ticket buyers of the potential for extreme noise levels, according to the Examiner. The Examiner’s Kevin Dunleavy also reported that this will be the first Mason game at the RAC in 28 years.

I did go to a swell session of Jim Larranaga’s youth camp there once, though. They were using National Geographic world-globe basketballs. Should trot those out tonight.

Also, much respect to Mason for using this as occasion to use a Back to the Future themed splash page. And also this video.

(Images via and @masonathletics and @gmuhoops.)

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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