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10 slammin' spots to catch the University of Houston Cougars and March Madness action

10 slammin' spots to catch the UH Cougars and March Madness action

University of Houston UH Cougars men's basketball team celebrating
The UH Cougars are ready for the big dance. Here's where to watch them run.  UH Cougars/Facebook

The roars are echoing across the Bayou City as the University of Houston Cougars men's basketball team has earned a No. 3 seed in the Midwest Region and will take on No. 14 seed Georgia State at 6:20 pm Friday, March 22 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

It's a tremendous time for the Coogs, who're riding a wave of momentum thanks to billionaire benefactor Tilman Fertitta, a visit from ESPN's College GameDay, and a March Madness hoops buzz not seen since the glory days of Akeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler, and the cast of Phi Slama Jama in the '80s. 

Plenty of adventurous Coogs will make the trip to Tulsa, but fortunately for those who can't, there are plenty of local spots to pounce on for a good view of the game and good brew.

(Pro tip: We humbly suggest hitting Twin Peaks, as a star-studded list of ESPN 97.5 FM hosts will broadcast live during the day.)

So whether you bleed Cougar red or are rooting for the other Texas teams in the tourney (we hear you, Abilene Christian, Texas Tech, Baylor, and Prairie View A&M), here's where to take in the madness. 

Avenida Plaza
Of course, this is the big one. Several different screens will be tuned into the game, including one large display at 100-plus inches and multiple ones at 80 inches. We also got appearances from the University of Houston Cheerleaders, Dance Team, members of the Cougar Marching Band, and UH mascot Sasha! 5-9 pm.

Finn Hall
The food hall, filled with 10 independently operated eating establishments and two bars, will be playing March Madness games (including this one) through April 8. And don't forget about the "Buckets for Buckets" specials, where you can mix-and-match buckets of beer cans, during the games. 11 am to 11 pm.

Fuego's Saloon 
Billed online as a "rustic-chic sports bar with eclectic pub grub, lots of beers, and an indoor/outdoor dog-friendly patio," this isn't a bad place to watch the game. Not only will people get to see the game live on TV, but they'll also be playing the radio commentary from a live broadcast. 6-9 pm.

Little Woodrow's Bellaire 
Over at the Bellaire location of this watering-hole franchise, happy hour is always extended to 9 pm on Fridays. So you can get $3 house wine, $4 Fireballs, and $5 margaritas while you watch the game. There will also be $4 select Houston drafts and can beers. 4 pm.

Lucky's Pub
It's known as a premier sports bar and pub, so why not watch the game there? Cheer the Coogs on while dining on such pub grub as boneless buffalo wings, spicy fried pickles, and something called WonTacos or Juan Tons (crispy wonton taco shells filled with ginger chicken, cabbage, carrot, mushroom, red pepper, and cilantro). 5-10 pm.

The Phoenix on Westheimer
Oh sure, you can show up, watch the game, and have a good-ass time. But we need to talk about the special this joint has every Friday, which is $8 fish and chips. That sounds just beautiful as hell. They also have $4 Phoenix brews — but it's the fish and chips we only care about! 6:20-9:20 pm.

Pitch 25 Beer Park
This ale haven will be playing this game and every game during March Madness. Happy hour will be from 3 to 6 pm, with wine and frozen cocktails half off and select regular beers for $3. And, if you get bored and feel a bit athletic, they got a soccer pitch in there! 3 pm to 2 am.

Revelry on Richmond
This spot has got a big screen ready to play the big game. Friday is also the day the happy hour is extended, from 3 to 9 pm, with Cougar Doll shots (whatever the hell that is) flowing all day long. And, remember, get 10 percent off regular-priced items when you bring your dog! 6-9 pm.

Twin Peaks
Along with showing all the games during March Madness, ESPN 97.5 FM programs The Charlie Pallilo Show, The Usual Suspects, and The Blitz will be broadcasting from the Kirby location during the day. (Full disclosure: These shows generally broadcast on the same floor where this site is located.) 11 am to midnight.

Vara's Sports Bar
This recently saved-from-extinction dive bar will be playing two games on its TV screens: UH vs. GSU and the Rockets vs. the Spurs. Since the UH game starts at 6:20 pm and the Rockets game starts at 7 pm, you will certainly have a couple of good hours to get properly liquored up beforehand. 4 pm to 2 am.

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