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When the men’s basketball team takes to the floor at Saturday’s NCAA semifinals in St. Louis, many of their fans will be cheering for them from the Tar Heels’ home court at the Smith Center.
The UNC Department of Athletics, Division of Student Affairs and the Rams Club are sponsoring a 15- by 20-foot screen and will open 15,000 seats in the Smith Center for free viewing of Final Four festivities. Large televisions in lounges of the Frank Porter Graham Student Union also will show the games.
At the Smith Center, Carolina students, faculty and staff with University IDs will be admitted first, at 5 p.m. Saturday. Doors will open to everyone else at 5:30 p.m.
Saturday’s first semifinal, matching Illinois and Louisville, begins at 6:07 p.m. Carolina will play Michigan State in the second game, set to tip 40 minutes after the conclusion of the first game.
Fans are asked to enter the Smith Center’s entrance A. Once inside, they are encouraged to remain; there will not be reentry for anyone leaving the building.
Should the Heels advance to the national championship game at 9:18 p.m. Monday, big-screen viewing at the Smith Center again will be offered. Students, faculty and staff with University IDs will be admitted at 8 p.m. and everyone else at 8:30 p.m.
Concessions will be sold. Alcohol, however, is not sold at the Smith Center, nor may patrons bring alcoholic beverages with them to the arena. Other prohibited items include: backpacks, duffel bags, backpack-style or otherwise large purses, computer cases, bottles, food, thermoses, coolers, drugs, chains, fireworks, explosives, weapons, knives (of any size), noise makers, signs, flags, banners, laser pointers, video equipment and any other items deemed inappropriate by personnel.
Free parking will be available at the Smith Center off Bowles Drive and in the nearby Kenan-Flagler Business School deck.