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|| News Item: Posted 1999-08-30

Early Madness
By Porter Binks, Sports Illustrated

The weather is hot and college basketball is the furthest thing from your mind. So please accept this gentle reminder to the newspapers in the twelve cities that will host the 2000 NCAA first and second rounds and the regional finals: you need to think about three things regarding the tournament:

1. Have you read and do you understand the rules for the use of strobes during the NCAA tournament? (Would you like to read the rules? Go to

2. Does your newspaper have a permanent set of strobes in the arena where the NCAA's will be played?

3. If the answer is yes, do you want to make that set available for the newspaper pool? If the answer is no, do you want to install a set and offer it for use as the newspaper pool? (If you install, you can recoup some expenses with a fee from others in the pool.)

Don't know if your city is a tourney site? Here they are:

2000 FIRST/SECOND ROUNDS EAST: Marine Midland Arena, Buffalo (March 17 &19) Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Winston-Salem, NC (March 17 &19) SOUTH: Nashville Arena (March 17 & 19) Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center (March 17 & 19) MIDWEST: Cleveland State University Convocation Center (March 16 & 18) Hubert Humphrey Metrodome, Minneapolis (March 16 & 18) WEST: Jon M. Huntsman Center, Salt Lake City, Utah (March 16 & 18) McKale Center, Tucson, AZ (March 16 & 18)

REGIONAL FINALS EAST: Carrier Dome, Syracuse, NY (March 24 & 26) SOUTH: Frank Erwin Center, Austin, TX (Mach 24 & 26) MIDWEST: The Palace at Auburn Hills, MI (March 23 & 25) WEST: University Arena (The Pit) Albuquerque, NM (March 23 & 25)

FINAL FOUR: RCA Dome, Indianapolis (SI installs all three sets) April 1 & 3. WOMEN"S FINAL FOUR: Core States Center, Philadelphia (March 26 & 28)

I would like to hear from photo directors, photo editors or photographers via e-mail ( who will be making arrangements for NCAA coverage, about you plans for strobes. I have experience working with papers in some of these cities because the tourney has been there before, but I'd love to at least get an email telling me your email, phone number, what kind of lights (if any) you have up? Are they hard wired or on a radio? Is the arena union? How's the available light for film & digital?

Just getting some preliminary info about strobes early will help me plan better. I purposely left my voice phone off because 1) it's took early for freelancers to start soliciting me to put up lights and 2) It hasn't been all that long ago I talked to everyone one in America about this topic, so email gives me a summer/fall break.

(Porter Binks is a picture editor at Sports Illustrated and also the strobe pool coordinator for the NCAA Tournament.)

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Porter Binks:

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