There’s a storm brewing on basketball courts across the NCAA

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Cheers and Jeers,Sports,Craig Stouffer,Georgetown University

College basketball's winter storm warning has extended well into March.

For a moment earlier in the year, it appeared that court-storming might only be reserved for Duke road losses. Then it turned into the Harlem Shake.

Still, it hardly made sense to extend to No. 5 Georgetown's distinctly-not-an-upset win over then-No. 17 Syracuse at Verizon Center. Would it stop with the remainder of the season's games moving to the neutral conference tournament sites? James Madison's contingent in Richmond for the CAA finals made sure it didn't.

Make no mistake, exhilaration and euphoria are part of what makes the sport so compelling, and college kids are going do college things.

But not only were reporters and tables toppled in a tsunami of Hoyas last weekend, the combination of students and folding chairs nearly smashed the ankles and legs of Georgetown's own women's varsity soccer players -- part of the school's game-day staff -- in a blind rush to celebrate the men's basketball team's Big East regular season title.

That's at least as serious a concern as Mike Krzyzewski's worries for his own players' safety. And while heroic, it's absurd that N.C. State's C.J. Leslie should have to lift a fellow student back into his wheelchair during a midcourt melee.

Ultimately, it's up to security, or the lack thereof at Verizon Center, to anticipate and prepare for a surge of humanity.

Putting rules in place should be a crucial topic of concern when home courts are back in business next fall. But at this rate, it's a wonder whether Georgia Dome will be safe during the Final Four.

- Craig Stouffer

cstouffer@washingtonexaminer.com

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