Great times for Aggie fans. I missed that game (had to work...listen on the radio) but after the win, two friends and I decided hightailed it to Phoenix for round two and the game against SW Louisiana. I was a broke college student back then so we drove late night to Phoenix the night before the game. It took us most of the night (after midnight) to finally find a vacant hotel room. Living in the Phoenix metro now, I occasionally drive by that hotel. The Aggie/ASU game this season was the first time I set foot in the Well Fargo Arena since that Sweet Sixteen year.
Was there for both games traveling with the team. Upon returning to Las Cruces the vans carrying the unsuspecting players drove down the ramp of Pan Am where several thousand fans had gathered to welcome the players back. It was awesome.
I was there as a fan .. the wife and two friends drove there, got a cheap hotel south of downtown Phoenix and enjoyed a Friday/Sunday of basketball and a little drinking.
I was pissed I couldn't get tickets to the Sweet 16 in Albuquerque. The Aggie athletic department whiffed at ticket distribution IMHO .. gave them to the highest bidders (donors and special people) without any regard to regular season tickets holders getting opportunities to purchase.
NMSU utilized the same method as other schools in the distribution of tickets, but 1,000 tickets (NMSU's allotment) didn't go very far. Because the game was in ABQ, the demand was extremely high. The band had to have tickets, the coaches got tickets, player families, the Prez, Faculty Rep, Regents, the AD & limited key staff, and yes, major boosters, and there were many, were given first consideration (if you gave $5,000 per year would you want special consideration?).
Even if all 1,000 tickets had been made available to season ticket holders, only 500 persons (2 tickets each), would have been able to purchase the tickets.
The problem was exacerbated when the Director of Special Events announced shortly after the completion of the Sunday game, and without the Athletic Department's authority or knowledge, that all 1,000 tickets would be on sale Monday morning. The result was overnight camping and a long line waiting for the Monday 10 a.m. opening of the ticket office. When the remaining tickets quickly sold out there was a near riot.