Filed by Mallory Carra
NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. New York City, my hometown, is freezing cold, and I hear theres some snow and ice on the ground again, reminding me of a reason why I left: I hate the cold. Snow is fun until it shows up in April when its supposed to be spring or you slip on it when youre trying to cross a busy Manhattan street.
Its 80 degrees and sunny here another reason its nice to be in Charleston for the SoCon tourney. There are palm trees, and I hear the beach isnt far from here. College of Charleston students walk around their campus in shorts and flip-flops. What more could you ask for during the first week of March?
Students at The Citadel a few blocks away have a military dress code on campus, so no flip flops there, but no doubt they do enjoy the weather.
McAlister Fieldhouse on The Citadels campus, where the womens teams played their first two days of the tournament, is strikingly smaller than North Charleston Coliseum. After all, McAlister is a college gym.
Its a brightly lit with a dome ceiling. Theres only seating on one side, and it holds roughly 25 percent of the amount of seating available in the coliseum. You walk through the front doors and a few steps later, you hit the basketball court. Need the bathroom? Its located about 15 feet away from the court. And youve reached the end of the building.
At the womens games, I didnt feel like I was watching a conference tournament; it felt more like a regular-season college basketball game. Sometimes that kind of setting can feel more personal, but it doesnt give you the feeling that the game is a big deal.
The North Charleston Coliseum is the real deal. Of course, its no Madison Square Garden, but compared to McAlister, the coliseum is close. There is pink-ish maroon seating surrounding the entire court. Its actually possible to get lost here; I got lost just trying to find the bathroom.
There may be few things McAlister and the Coliseum have in common: neither were filled to capacity so far this weekend and theres sunshine, not snow, outside both. Ill enjoy it the coliseum and the weather while I can.
E-mail Mallory Carra at firstname.lastname@example.org.