Auburn Hills — Michigan State and Michigan were both using the Pistons locker room, and that fact was not lost on the players.
"I followed the Pistons, especially when they won the championship," Detroit native Keith Appling said. "It's a special feeling to be able to play here in the NCAA Tournament and have all my family and close friends be able to come watch us play."
A baby for an assistant
Michigan State assistant Dane Fife knew he would get very little sleep this time of year. It's just the nature of coaching in the NCAA Tournament.
But on Tuesday morning, Fife and his wife, Blair , welcomed their second daughter, Reagan , who was born at 10:45 a.m.
"There is no greater rush than when your child is born," said Fife, a native of Clarkston.
Fife is in his second year as an assistant at Michigan State after six seasons as coach at Fort Wayne. It was on a game day at Fort Wayne his oldest daughter, Quinnly , was born.
Tickets? Not for everyone
Tickets are not easy to come by at The Palace this week, even if you're a player.
For Derrick Nix , it has been eye-opening how much his phone has been buzzing, though he has weeded out fair-weather friends.
"You got people that never call you, but now that you're at The Palace they got your number some mysterious way," Nix said. "I feel like if you haven't talked to me my whole college career and now you want to hit me up for tickets? I tell them to get lost."