UPDATE: As the Cougars have advanced to the Elite Eight, fans are invited to another watch party for the showdown against Villanova at 5 pm Saturday, March 26 at Avenida Houston. Register for tickets here.
As local hoops fans know, March Madness is back and University of Houston Cougars have clinched the American Athletic Conference Championship and now face the University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers on Friday, March 18.
To celebrate the No. 5-seeded Coogs as they take on UAB in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, UH and Houston First Corp. are hosting a free, downtown March Madness watch party at Avenida Houston on Friday, starting at 8 pm. Fans are encouraged to don their best UH gear or red and scream for the team.
Expect a massive 24-foot viewing screen, music, drinks, games, prizes, appearances by UH mascots Shasta and Sasha, and performances from the university’s dance, cheer, and band, per an announcement.
Those interested can register for party tickets by visiting www.uhcougars.com/tickets. Doors open 90 minutes before tip-off.
Similar watch parties happened last year, as the Coogs made it to the Final Four for the first time in nearly 40 years. The team was eventually bested by Baylor University in March 2021 in a wrenching, 78-59 loss.
Stopping the No. 12-ranked Blazers’ explosive offense won’t be easy. However, under prolific coach Kelvin Sampson — who has taken the team to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances and has skillfully instilled a winning culture — the Coogs once again boast one of the best defenses in the nation.
As our sister site SportsMap points out, the Coogs are an 8.5 point favorite to win this matchup and have proven they can make a deep run.
Coogs fans can look forward to these Avenida watch parties as the team advances through the tourney and — fingers crossed — back to the Final Four.