MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The Marquette Golden Eagles boarded a bus for Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, March 26th. There, they will take on the University of Miami on Thursday -- hoping to advance to the Elite 8 in March Madness NCAA Tournament play.
A crowd saw the team off on Tuesday afternoon -- and Marquette officials say you cannot buy this kind of recognition for the school -- especially this time of year, when high school seniors are about to make their college decisions.
"It kinda cuts through the clutter a little bit sometimes too that students and parents are just kinda bombarded with information and this allows them to kind of focus a little bit on us," Marquette Dean of Admissions Roby Blust said.
As Golden Eagles fans watch players make magic on the basketball court, some will head to the internet to see what Marquette University is all about.
"We have actually seen some increases in some of our markets that are a little farther away from Milwaukee," Dean Blust said.
The tournament excitement can also affect alumni giving. It was a big boost to the funding of the Al McGuire Center in 2004.
"In the midst of our Final Four run, we were finalizing the fundraising for the building. And we got the final $4 million in a matter of a couple of weeks during that run. It`s such a good example of the impact it can have," Marquette University Director of University Communications Andy Brodzeller said.
Brodzeller added this is a very exciting time for both the team, and the university. There are 110,000 living Marquette alumni, and there will be 55 viewing parties across the country and the world Thursday when the team plays.