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SportsCenter visits Hoopfest, Cougs crash the party

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If there are ESPN cameras present, you know Ol' Crimson will be nearby.

ESPN visited one of the not-well-known-but-totally-freaking-awesome sporting celebrations in the country this weekend, broadcasting SportsCenter live Sunday morning from Spokane's Hoopfest as part of a summer tour.

The network was hoping for a College GameDay-like atmosphere at the set, and, well ... WSU fans were all too happy to oblige (sorry lonely Gonzaga bro):

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ESPN?src=hash">#ESPN</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/SportsCenter">@SportsCenter</a> now live from <a href="https://twitter.com/SpokaneHoopfest">@SpokaneHoopfest</a> w/ <a href="https://twitter.com/jaymee">@jaymee</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/MattBarrieESPN">@MattBarrieESPN</a> <a href="http://t.co/ytguOVQVEx">pic.twitter.com/ytguOVQVEx</a></p>&mdash; Andy Hall (@AndyHallESPN) <a href="https://twitter.com/AndyHallESPN/status/615158725511241728">June 28, 2015</a></blockquote>

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Part of what makes this even more fun is that one of the SportsCenter hosts, Jaymee Sire, is a Coug herself:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">WOW. <a href="https://twitter.com/Cougar_Cruiser">@Cougar_Cruiser</a> Hooked. It. Up. So excited to decorate my cube at work. Especially appreciate the red solo cup. <a href="http://t.co/iUz6pY3Anz">pic.twitter.com/iUz6pY3Anz</a></p>&mdash; Jaymee Sire (@jaymee) <a href="https://twitter.com/jaymee/status/615209848087576576">June 28, 2015</a></blockquote>

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With more than 200,000 people and 7,000 teams hanging out around downtown Spokane, WSU used the opportunity to promote the brand.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Come see us at Hoopfest! We&#39;re at WSU Connections downtown! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoCougs?src=hash">#GoCougs</a> <a href="http://t.co/nE0c5p1SE1">pic.twitter.com/nE0c5p1SE1</a></p>&mdash; WSUCougFootball (@wsucougfb) <a href="https://twitter.com/wsucougfb/status/614886719872086016">June 27, 2015</a></blockquote>

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">The Crimson Girls at Nike Center Court! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoCougs?src=hash">#GoCougs</a> <a href="http://t.co/0fPQJrY8yR">pic.twitter.com/0fPQJrY8yR</a></p>&mdash; WSU Cougars (@WSUCougars) <a href="https://twitter.com/WSUCougars/status/614882121971277825">June 27, 2015</a></blockquote>

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Air conditioning? A great game on TV? Thanks, WSU Connections:

AC, comfy chairs and a pretty awesome game replay on Pac-12 Networks. Doing #hoopfest right. #GoCougs

A photo posted by WSU Cougars (@wsucougars_com) on

There also were at least a few former WSU players participating in the tournament:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Look who showed up to <a href="https://twitter.com/SpokaneHoopfest">@SpokaneHoopfest</a>!! <a href="https://twitter.com/brockm12">@brockm12</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/Patty_Ice44">@patty_ice44</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/KeatonHayenga">@KeatonHayenga</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TheSquad?src=hash">#TheSquad</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoCougs?src=hash">#GoCougs</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Hoopfest2015?src=hash">#Hoopfest2015</a> <a href="http://t.co/FOeP3UG100">pic.twitter.com/FOeP3UG100</a></p>&mdash; ZZU CRU (@ZZUCRU) <a href="https://twitter.com/ZZUCRU/status/614862238449471488">June 27, 2015</a></blockquote>

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It doesn't appear Brock Motum played in the tournament, but Patrick Simon and Keaton Hayenga did; Simon's team, Totalfit Spokane, finished third in the Elite Division #2 tournament, while Hayenga's team, Doughy Torsos (which also included Charlie Enquist), lost its first game before coming back through the loser's bracket to take fourth in the Elite Division #1 tournament.

I've never been to Hoopfest, but it's on my bucket list. It's completely and totally awesome to see this event -- and WSU -- get some national recognition.