Tar Heels fans arriving in Houston for Final Four

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UNC and other fans flock to the Final Four.

The clouds parted over Houston on Thursday afternoon just as fans started pouring into the city.

More than 70,000 people are expected to pack into downtown this weekend ahead of the Final Four.

Whitney Zyko traveled from Connecticut to attend his 25th Final Four in 30 years.

"The energy, the electricity, the people, the excitement, it's just my favorite sporting event," he said.

Watch UNC Chasing the Championship Friday at 7:30 p.m. on ABC11.

Fans are ready to see their favorite teams in action, including basketball coach Steve Brannan.

This year he is counting on North Carolina to go all the way.

"It's special with the Tar Heels being here because our daughter got her undergrad degree at Carolina. They should help me out in my pool, too," Brannan joked.


The top-seeded Tar Heels take the court Saturday night, vying for a shot at the NCAA championship, and the competition is heating up.

Former basketball coach Todd James was decked out in Michael Jordan gear when we met him at NRG Stadium.

"This has been my lifelong wish is to come to the Final Four," James said.

He's been keeping up with the Tar Heels during March Madness from overseas.

"I say God is good because we get ESPN in Ireland," James said.

And then there were the homegrown fans, such as Matt Horan, who just flew in from Raleigh.

"I've been a Carolina fan my whole life," Horan said.

He got his tickets a year ago, long before anyone knew which four teams would be in Houston.

"We just got the luck of the draw that Carolina made," Horan said.

Keith Wade arrived in Houston on crutches determined to see Syracuse win it all.

"I think Syracuse has got something up their sleeve," he said with a smile. "We're going to do it all. Luckily we lucked up, our hotel is right across the street so we're going to turn them loose so I don't have to chase them on my crutches."

There is one thing fans can agree on.

No matter who they are cheering for, the Final Four is the place to be.

"I've been to a Super Bowl. I've been to a World Series, but this, as far as I'm concerned, is the cream of the crop," Zyko said.

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