With single game tickets going on sale Monday for CSU's 2009-2010 men's basketball season — they have West Virginia and the ESPNU Bracketbuster game at home this year, as well as Butler, of course — Cleveland State officially launched the season with Viking Madness at Woodling Gymnasium Saturday afternoon. Coming off the school's strongest season since the days of Kevin Mackey, the Vikings look to build on their appearance in the second round of the NCAA tourney. Problem? They lost a bunch of seniors, including stalwarts J'Nathan Bullock and Cedric Jackson, among others. In fact, the Vikings have zero seniors on the roster this year. Returning juniors Norris Cole and D'Aundray Brown are co-captains this year.
Anyway, on to the Viking Madness photo gallery and recap.
As you can see in the photo above, foam viking hats bear the phrase, "I Like Vike" were given out to attendees, which included this young fan.
Signs decorated the gym. You probably recognize this depiction of the Viking.
Of course, CSU is all about equality, so we got a black Viking also.
The dance team in full force.
Really no better edible accompaniment to a festive day than the most festive of foods: cotton candy.
He might look intimidating, but seriously, it was hard to be scared after watching him dance — badly, I might add — for an hour.
The dance team served as impromptu rebounders for the free throw contest.
Don't care how good you are. After watching the women scrimmage, you wouldn't stand a chance. These ladies can ball.
The crowd. Nice turnout.
After a short video, some chatter from each coach, the Vikes ran through some drills. Afterward there was a 3-point competition (won by Jeremy Montgomery) and a dunk contest (won in impressive fashion by Nigel Ajere, who managed a right-hand-to-left between-the-legs number followed by a soaring dunk over three teammates).
Finally, the homecoming awards. Norris Cole was in the running, but Guy Turner, a member of the dance team, won the men's crown instead.