SILOAM SPRINGS (KFSM) - There was never really any doubt that John Brown University would make the D1 men's basketball NAIA tournament. It just took a little longer than expected for the Golden Eagles to have their name called.
"We haven't made it in my four years here," senior Jake Caudle, a Bentonville graduate said. "We've been talking about it every year and now to actually see our name on that board, like I said, it's an awesome feeling."
"I have three seniors, all from Arkansas. And [it's amazing] to be able to realize the goal," head coach Jason Beschta said.
The JBU community gathered at the Walker Student Center to watch the selection show. The Golden Eagles were the 27th out of 32 teams revelead on the bracket.
"Didn't see our name in the first quadrant, but we knew there was three more. Second quadrant, we started turning towards each other," Caudle explained. "Third quadrant, we figured we had to be in that region. No name. By the fourth quadrant we were sweating a little, but then it came about halfway."
"I knew we would make it," Beschta. "Based on the final rankings, we were gonna be 15 or 16. So I was pretty comfortable. But it's still so exciting to see our name up there."
John Brown has made the tournament eight times in its history, including the famous 2005 National Championship run.
The Golden Eagles open up the Round of 32 with the first game at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday March 20 against Bethel University (Tennessee).
The tournament runs from March 20-26 in Kansas City. You can view the entire bracket here.