Cody Cousino / Photo editor
I was wearing four layers with a rain jacket, three pairs of pants, wool socks, a beanie and snow boots. No, I was not in the Arctic Circle, I was standing in line outside of the Schottenstein Center waiting for my chance to see Thad Matta’s Buckeyes take on college basketball’s winningest coach, Mike Krzyzewski and the Duke Blue Devils.
It all started just before noon when I got a text from my friend Kurt telling me to get to the stadium as soon as possible because they were handing out yellow wristbands that were required for entry.
I politely excused myself (a little early) from class and ran like I was being chased to the corner of Lane Avenue and Olentangy River Road where I too got my star-covered yellow wristband and hopped in line with my three friends.
It was cold but bearable. The slight drizzle was accompanied by uncomfortable gusts of wind, which made pitching a tent impossible. We jumped up and down and walked in circles, anything to keep warm.
Sophomore stars, Jared Sullinger and Deshaun Thomas tried their best to warm up the fans as they walked past the line snapping pictures with students (but not Duke fans).
At four, all tents were ordered to be taken down and we were organized in a single file line along the stadium’s south wall.
With only four hours left until the doors opened, we did anything to try to pass the time. We played cards, but the awkward size of our gloves hindered our ability to pick up and put down cards. We told riddles, but it was too cold to think. We tried to read, but the wind kept blowing the pages.
It was a productive person’s nightmare.
I’m sure every person at one point in time was thinking it wasn’t worth it — even me. But just after 6 p.m., I felt a burst of energy as the side door of the stadium pushed at my back. Out of nowhere, coach Thad Matta appeared, but was only seen by a few.
“I’ve got a cold, but I can’t even imagine what you guys are going to have tomorrow,” he said. “Thanks for coming out.”
He smiled and pointed at me through the Block “O” window and like that, he was gone.
Before I knew it, it was 8 o’clock and the doors flew open. We got our fourth row center court seats and de-layered.
It was game time. Nearly 10 hours of waiting for this, and the game didn’t disappoint. We yelled until our voices gave out. We jumped until our legs gave out. And we whirled our towels until our arms gave out.
Just about everyone I know said we were crazy. But I would disagree.
We aren’t crazy, “we’re nuts.”