Hoyas fans, the wait is over.
For the first time since the heartbreaking loss to NC State in the NCAA Tournament, your Georgetown fighting Hoyas will all be on the court at the same time tonight, at Midnight Madness in hallowed McDonough Gymnasium.
The event, snippets of which will be shown tonight on ESPNU's coverage of Madness across the country, will feature the introduction of both the men's and women's teams, a number of performances by various Georgetown dance groups and a concert by hip-hop legend Doug E. Fresh. In addition to all that jazz, the Hoya Hoop Club will unveil the new slogan for this season's We Are Georgetown t-shirt, to be chosen among the below:
Heroes Get Remembered, Legends Never Die
The Father, the Son, and the Hoya Spirit
We Don't Rebuild, We Reload
When the Weak Give In, We Stand Strong
One For All, All For III
Faith from the Beginning, Fight to the Finish
The event will also feature the debut of Georgetown's mascot-in-training, Jack Jr. Junior, currently a precious 10-month old puppy, will be attending his first Midnight Madness and showing off his developing box eating skills (pause).
From GU Hoyas:
All of the festivities from Midnight Madness will be streamed live for free at GUHoyas.com beginning at 8:30 p.m., on Friday evening. The live stream can be viewed by clicking HERE.
Wristband distribution for students for the event will begin at 6:30 p.m. Outdoor activities include a Domino's Pizza pop-a-shot, Powerade ball toss, a cookout from the Georgetown University Grilling Society (GUGS) and free Domino's pizza.
Giveaways will include an exclusive Jordan Brand Georgetown Basketball T-shirt and a lighted thunderstick.
Doors to the arena open at 8 p.m. There will be performances by the GU Step Team, GU Jawani and Groove Theory beginning at 8:30 p.m. In addition, the men's and women's players will be pairing up with students in a number of shooting games.
The Georgetown Pep Band and cheerleaders will take the floor at 9:15 p.m., and the women's basketball team will be introduced at 9:20 p.m., followed by an address from Head Coach Keith Brown.
The Hoyas men's basketball team and Head Coach John Thompson III will be introduced at approximately 9:45 p.m. followed by a dunk showcase and a series of drills.
On a personal note, my first Madness at Georgetown was in 1995 (OH MY GOD I AM SO OLD MY LIFE HAS NO MEANING HELP ME), which may have been the first Madness in Georgetown's history. For us freshmen on campus it was our first glimpse at the entire squad outside of random individual appearances at pick-up games at Yates or standing behind them in line to use the bathroom in the ICC. It was our first chance to see the team that for many of us, was the reason we decided to attend Georgetown to begin with.
Before the Hoyas' magical run to the Final Four in 2007, 1995 represented our last real chance at glory, and the experience of Midnight Madness stayed with us all season. In fact, I can still remember it clearly as I write this, and that says a lot given all the stuff I have decided to wreck my body and mind with since then. It was exciting to be at McDonough for which many of us was the first time, especially so late at night when it seemed like it was against the rules. It was standing room only, and after the gimmick 'you can tryout to be a walk-on!' was over (which was great since we all started cheering for this one obese kid who couldn't run but couldn't miss from behind the arc), the players, led by Allen Iverson, Othella Harrington, Jerome Williams, Jahidi White, Boubacar Aw, and the legendary Victor Page came out to that Mariah Carey and ODB song as the lights went out in McDonough and put on an epic dunking display much to the delight of the students who expected nothing less. The momentum of Madness carried over into the season as that rush that we all experienced as students that night was the reason we thought it was a good idea to drink a bunch of Natty Ice before boarding a school bus to Landover, Maryland.
For us freshman, Midnight Madness started it all. Now Midnight Madness has become a tradition at Georgetown, and the University smartly uses the event as a springboard to seduce recruits. Indeed, it is alleged that after seeing Patrick Ewing, Jr. teach Jerry Rice the Soulja Boy dance, Greg Monroe told Duke to shove it and started seeking out the more casual apartments in Copley. Indeed, tonight takes on a similar importance, as it is rumored the Hoyas may host prized recruit Roddy Peters, among others.
But the best part of Madness is that it truly marks one of the only times where the team is allowed to celebrate with the students before the season starts. Members of the team are encouraged to show off their best dance moves (mostly to disastrous and hilarious results), and even JT3 gets in on it.
So for students who still are lucky enough to live on campus and experience the awesome optimism that comes with the dawning of each college hoops season, get your ass to McDonough. This is your chance to let the players know in October how loud you'll be for them when the games start to really matter in late December through March and hopefully April. This is your chance to show the team that even in the midst of Natitude, Georgetown matters.
Georgetown basketball is back.