BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — With preparations underway for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, fans recently got a chance to see their favorite teams practice.

A shoot-around was held inside Legacy Arena for fans to watch practice Wednesday.

It was West Virginia University student David Nottingham’s first time attending the NCAA tournament. He’s a member of West Virginia’s marching band and tells me he’s enjoying his time in Birmingham.

“It’s been great, it’s been super nice. The southern hospitality thing isn’t a lie, it’s real,” Nottingham said. “We checked out Buc-ee’s, and we loved that, and so far, we’re just ready to explore.”

For West Virginia fans John and Catherine Hach, attending the tournament was a pit stop on their way home to Fort Wayne, Indiana.

“We’re on our way home from Florida, and this was right on the route, so we’re looking forward to the game, and we’re glad they made the tournament,” Hach said.

Other fans like Phillip Bowman hope his teams will also have a deep tournament run. Coming to the tournament is a homecoming for him, as he lives in Austin, Texas but is from Pell City, Alabama.

“I’m excited for the city of Birmingham, the state of Alabama, and this is a beautiful arena the way they have remodeled it,” Bowman said. “It’s so much excitement, so many new restaurants, the people and fans are back, and it’s just a great environment.”